Will Chiefs make the 2015 playoffs?

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- There seems to be plenty of optimism among their fans about the Kansas City Chiefs' chances of reaching the playoffs next year. That’s no doubt the result of the Chiefs beating both of this year’s Super Bowl participants during the 2014 regular season.

Not to spoil your party or anything but Mike Sando has a post that isn’t going to be particularly popular with Chiefs fans. Sando predicts the playoff teams for next season and the Chiefs aren’t among them.

My thought is that it’s probably too early to make any kind of accurate predictions about what kind of shape the Chiefs will be in to make a playoff push. Let’s see what the Chiefs do with veterans on their roster (Dwayne Bowe, Tamba Hali, and Justin Houston, among others), what moves they make in free agency and how they do in the draft before we make a more educated guess.

I’ve already written that the coaching upheaval in Denver opens up the AFC West race to the other teams for the first time since Manning joined the Broncos in 2012. The Chiefs could be as well positioned as any of the other three teams to take advantage.

I also don’t think the Chiefs will make the bold moves in free agency that will make them any kind of clear-cut favorite to win the division or even reach the playoffs as a wild-card entrant. Without gutting their roster they won’t have the financial wiggle room for that. Even if they did, it’s not the nature of their owner and general manager to go all-in on one season at the likely expense of several others in the future.

But the Chiefs aren’t far off. Their wins over the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks remind us of that. But their corresponding losses to miserable teams in the Tennessee Titans and Oakland Raiders also remind us they still have work to do.