“From Lovable Underdogs to Hated Dynasty”: How Kansas City Chiefs Became NFL’s Houston Astros

Published 01/29/2024, 8:30 AM EST

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Remember the days when the Kansas City Chiefs Kingdom was synonymous with underdog magic? Coach Andy Reid’s slinging trick plays with a ragtag bunch, defying expectations with every Patrick Mahomes scramble and Tyreek Hill juke. Yeah, those days are gone, baby—replaced by an era of Lombardi dominance that’s drawn comparisons to the most underestimated team in MLB: the Houston Astros.

Hear me out. 2017–2023 for the Astros? Seven ALCS appearances, four World Series appearances, and two titles. 2019–2024 for the Chiefs? Six AFC championship games, four Super Bowls, and two Lombardi trophies (with a potential third looming). Both teams, once darlings of the neutral fan, have transformed into juggernauts, their success breeding a potent cocktail of admiration and, well, let’s just say it—envy.

From Arrowhead Affection to Enemy Territory: The parallels between the Kansas City and the Houston Astros are undeniable


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Just like the Astros’ rumored buzzers, the Kansas City Chiefs’ offensive wizardry feels unfair at times. Mahomes, the magician behind the curtain, conjures plays that defy logic and physics, leaving opposing defenses bewildered and fans screaming at their screens. And then there’s the Hill factor, the Tyreek Cheetah, who used to leave defensive backs in his dust, a human highlight reel who, like José Altuve’s bat, seemed to defy the laws of the game. But the similarities go beyond on-field brilliance. 


Both teams have faced accusations of pushing the envelope and flirting with the edge of fair play. Remember the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal? The Chiefs’ aggressive salary cap maneuvers and questionable late-game tactics haven’t exactly endeared them to the rest of the league either. And then there’s the fan factor.

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Kansas City Chiefs Kingdom, once known for its passionate devotion and infectious enthusiasm, has developed a swagger—a sense of entitlement that grates on some. Just like the Astros’ “earned, not given” mantra, the Chiefs’ relentless winning has bred a certain… arrogance, an elitist vibe that leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of neutral observers. Same playbook, and similar haughtiness. What gives?


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Chiefs and Astros: Champs or Chokers?

Both teams have been dominating pennants and championship games recently, but repeated playoff losses raise questions amongst the fanbase, as was keenly observed by SportsMap Houston two years ago. Are they dynasties in waiting or destined for Atlanta Braves/Buffalo Bills’ failed prodigy territory? Pros?

Both have recent championships, consistent playoff appearances, and superstar talents like Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce to helm the Chiefs’ offense, as Yordan Álvarez and Kyle Tucker do for the Astros. Cons? No repeat titles for consecutive years, key offseason losses, and mounting pressure to deliver with a salary cap ranging above $200 million. This season, the Chiefs are tasting glory, but the clock is ticking. Can they silence the doubters and secure a legacy, or fade back into the “what if” territory?


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Read More: NFL Superstar Patrick Mahomes Gets Blown Away by the Houston Astros’ Clutch Walk-Off Victory to Begin Their 2022 Postseason on a High Note

So, are the Chiefs the NFL’s Astros? The jury’s still out. But it is undeniable that they’ve traveled past the point of no return and traded in their underdog jerseys for dynasty robes. And with their talent, swagger, and Mahomes magic, they’re showing no signs of slowing down. Love them or hate them, you cannot help but wonder at the reality: the NFL landscape is shifting, and the Kansas City Chiefs, the new Astros of the gridiron, are right at the epicenter.


Written by:

Shrabana Sengupta


One take at a time

"Those who gaze outward dream, but those who turn inward awaken." A pro-writer for MLB EssentiallySports, I’ve been a fan of the New York Yankees since my school days. In my adolescent years, I was introduced to the iconic franchise through one of my beloved Friends characters, Joey.
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Edited by:

Deepanshi Bajaj