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OutKick Monday NFL Perspectives: It Never Gets Old For The Chiefs; Eagles Flying Late In Season; Brother Brawl; Plus This And That

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Another division title was never the goal for the Kansas City Chiefs but it was a goal. And reaching that on Sunday with a convincing 36-10 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers marked a milestone for the franchise.

The Chiefs have now won the AFC West six consecutive years and, yes, they’ve clinched a playoff berth for the seventh time under coach Andy Reid.

And it doesn’t get old.

“We don’t take any of those experiences for granted at all,” Reid said. “I know we get a free t-shirt and a hat, but there’s a lot of sweat that goes into this — the effort, pushing through things that you normally don’t have to push through to get to work, both mentally and physically.

“So, I’m proud of our guys for how they handled it and I’m proud of the coaches for how they handled it. It’s a great honor.”

It wasn’t that long ago the media told you the Chiefs were considered yesterday’s team. They were 3-4. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes had been figured out by defensive coordinators. The defense was bad.

(Well, not all the media said that.)

Two months later the Chiefs are the only AFC team that has clinched a playoff berth.

And this year’s accomplishment might be more impressive than past years because the competition within the AFC West is better.

“If you look at the AFC West, I mean every team is battling for a playoff spot,” Mahomes said. “It’s a tough division that you have to go in with the mindset of we have to win the AFC West divisional games to get where we want to be at.

“To be able to win the AFC West, to be able to get that first goal – obviously like you said we have more goals that we want to go after, but this was the first one. To take this step, you got to build that momentum into the playoffs and try to make a run at it.”

Eagles Making A Playoff Run

The Philadelphia Eagles in the playoffs? Really?

Well, yes, it is definitely looking like that way because the Eagles have won five of six games, including three in a row, and are currently the No. 7 seed in the NFC with two games to play.

Regardless of whether the team makes the postseason or not, the late rally has been a clear sign first-year coach Nick Sirianni is building something because the season began with three consecutive losses and five in the first six games — so the exact opposite of the streak the team is currently on.

And not only are the Eagles winning but they’re having fun doing it. Take Sunday’s 34-10 trashing of the New York Giants as evidence in that Eagles scored their final offensive touchdown on a 5-yard pass to offensive tackle Lane Johnson.

The name of the play is East Texas.

“Some of those gadgety ones, you don’t try to name everything because it’s hard to name it all,” Sirianni said. “So, you kind of come up with a specialized name and Lane’s from East Texas, so that’s what we called it.”

The game was tied 3-3 which suggested neither offense showed up in the first half but the Eagles burst through in the second half with 24 consecutive points after halftime.

“Just, hey, good teams win games however they need to win games,” Sirianni said. “If we have to grind this out and be grimy and let the defense carry the weight the whole time, we’ll do it that way. But, hey, just have that next-play mentality of forget the first half.

“Have that next-play mentality and come out ready to go. They definitely did a good job of coming out and just forgetting — they did exactly that, forgot the first half and they executed in the second half.”

The Eagles control their own destiny in that if they beat Washington on Sunday followed by the Cowboys (who may be resting players) the final week of the season, they’re in the playoffs.

Brother Fight on Washington Sideline

A Sunday night national television audience saw Washington defensive tackles Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen get into a heated exchange that was physical for a moment and Sunday Night Football analyst Cris Collinsworth said it was a significant issue for the team going forward.

Typically when one guys pokes a finger into another head and the response is a roundhouse punch, yes, that’s an issue.

Well, neither player agreed with that afterward.

“When things are going bad like they are, things get heated,” Allen said after the Cowboys completed their 56-14 pummeling of Washington. “I think everybody saw what happened. I think the important thing is to move forward from it. [S–t] happens. Brothers fight.”

Payne gave a similar explanation.

“You got brothers?” he asked reporters. “Y’all fight, don’t you?”

Coach Ron Rivera said the whole issue comes from a season gone sideways the last three weeks. In that time Washington went from 6-6 to 6-9 after three consecutive losses to NFC East opponents.

“Yeah, frustration,” Rivera. “Wanting to win. Having an opportunity for the last few weeks and not being able to get it done. Not being able to have all the pieces in place that you need to go out there and play together.

“That’s what that is. It’s guys wanting to compete, wanting to win more than anything else.”

This And That

— The 5-10 Seattle Seahawks were officially eliminated from the playoffs and a lot of time the final two weeks of the season will be spent getting clues from quarterback Russell Wilson on where his head and heart are at about next year. Will he agree to remain with the team that clearly needs upgrading and perhaps rebuilding? Or will he ask for a trade? Uncertain times in Seattle.

— Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott threw a touchdown pass to Ezekiel Elliott, Amari Cooper, Dalton Schultz and Terence Steele Sunday night. So he became the first QB in NFL history to throw a touchdown pass to a running back, wide receiver, tight end and offensive lineman in the same game.

— Here’s the list of all the NFL players to ever throw 100 touchdown passes and score 20 rushing touchdowns: Josh Allen.

— Cowboys cornerback Trevon Diggs picked off another pass on Sunday and he now has 11 for the season. That’s the most by any player since 1981 and three short of the all-time record for one season.

Follow on Twitter: @ArmandoSalguero

Written by Armando Salguero

Armando Salguero has covered the NFL since 1990 for the Palm Beach Post, Miami Herald and ESPN. He was a 2016 Associated Press Sports Editors Top 10 columnist. He is a Pro Football Hall of Fame selector and AP All-Pro team voter.

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