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NFL: Chiefs and Bills exit with stats high

The Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills, despite missing out on Super Bowl LVI, are ranked as the teams to beat next season in early futures betting.

The Chiefs, who held an early 18-point advantage before going down in overtime to the Cincinnati Bengals in Sunday's AFC title game, are at 13/2 to win Super Bowl LVII - as are the Bills team they defeated in an epic Divisional Round shoot-out.

Chiefs set for change

Kansas City won't be able to keep all of their key players on the roster, with two dozen contributors scheduled to become unrestricted free agents this coming offseason - in addition to some more as exclusive rights and restricted free agents.

All-pro safety Tyrann Mathieu has made it clear that he wants to stay with the Chiefs, but his contract extension will only be affordable if Kansas City can bring their salary cap position down in other areas.

The Chiefs are reported to be considering using the franchise tag to keep Orlando Brown Jr, after trading multiple draft picks, including last year's first-rounder, to acquire the former Baltimore Ravens left tackle last April.

Defensive end Melvin Ingram, defensive tackle Jarran Reed and cornerback Charvarius Ward are all players head coach Andy Reid would like to keep, but some difficult decisions lie ahead in the weeks preceding March's free agency period.

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Free agents hold keys

Likewise, the Bills are expected to prioritise re-signing their own impending free agents with stars Levi Wallace and Harrison Phillips set to hit the open market as things stand.

Wide receivers Emmanuel Sanders and Isaiah McKenzie also have contracts that expire soon, which could force them to find help in that area.

"We'll still have to make some moves but I wouldn't see us being like big spenders or anything like that," general manager Brandon Beane told the media last week, via the Bills' YouTube channel.

"But we'll definitely look to fill some spots from the outside as well as retain some of our guys."

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