This week's Sunday Night Football slate sees the Kansas City Chiefs play host to the Denver Broncos in what's shaping up to be a pivotal AFC West contest. The division is one of the more crowded ones in all of football, and both teams desperately need to win. For the Chiefs, a win allows them to maintain sole possession of first place. For the Broncos, a victory keeps them in a solid position to be in the driver's seat for the AFC West crown. The importance of this game cannot be understated.
Ahead of this Week 13 matchup, the Chiefs' list of inactive players has been released:
As far as the Chiefs are concerned, there aren't any major surprises here. Heading into the game, offensive lineman Lucas Niang and cornerback Rashad Fenton were both already ruled out. Niang practiced in a limited capacity on Wednesday, although he didn't practice on Thursday or Friday. Fenton, who suffered a sprained knee a couple of weeks ago, was held out of practice all week.
On the offensive side of the ball, an early Sunday morning report revealed that running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire was expected to be active. The 2020 first-round pick missed Friday's practice because of illness, but he's good to go for Kansas City on Sunday night. Veteran offensive lineman Kyle Long participated fully in practice all week after returning from the Physically Unable to Perform list, but he'll miss at least this game before being activated for game day.
The Broncos' inactives have also been released:
Not having running back Melvin Gordon III is a big loss for Denver, although rookie Javonte Williams is a dynamic player who very well could make the most of the opportunity to see a huge workload. Seven members of the Broncos were listed as questionable coming into the game, which is a staggering number. Fortunately for them, all seven players will be active.
The Broncos are getting left tackle Garett Bolles back after missing several weeks due to an ankle injury. Also returning into the fold is right tackle Bobby Massie, who was dealing with an ankle ailment of his own. The Chiefs' front four is more formidable now than it was earlier in the season and seems to be rounding into shape, which makes the additions of Bolles and Massie key for the Broncos on offense. Mike Purcell being inactive is the lone surprise on the list.