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xxedge72x
09-06-2005, 06:33 PM
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www.espn.com

Why To Watch
For the Chiefs, the offseason was all about upgrading a defense that has ranked among the league's worst the last two seasons and finished next-to-last overall last season. Coordinator Gunther Cunningham couldn't make the necessary upgrades without improved personnel last season, which spawned the acquisitions of OLB Kendrell Bell, DC Patrick Surtain and SS Sammy Knight. The should-be improved unit will be put to the test against a balanced Jets' attack led by RB Curtis Martin, a healthy QB Chad Pennington and the return of WR Laveranues Coles.
The Chiefs did nothing to upgrade their offense, but RB Priest Holmes, QB Trent Green, TE Tony Gonzalez and WR Eddie Kennison should continue to play starring roles in a balanced and explosive attack. This unit also will be put to the test right away against a Jets defense that should only be improved thanks to the addition of DC Ty Law.


When the Jets have the ball
Rushing: The Jets will look to take more vertical shots down the field with Mike Heimerdinger as the new offensive coordinator, but the one thing that will not change is the run-first focus.

RB Martin is coming off a career-year in 2004, when he rushed for a league-high 1,697 yards on 371 carries. He ran harder last season, while also showing more burst and explosiveness, than he had in the previous three seasons. The Chiefs' run defense projects to be better than the one that surrendered 114.6 yards per game last season, but the Jets will make Kansas City prove it.

The Chiefs have the same personnel along their front four, with DTs Ryan Sims and Lionel Dalton teaming with DEs Jared Allen and Eric Hicks. However, they have greater depth at both spots thanks to the addition of DE Carlos Hall, as well as the maturation of 2004 second-round pick DT Junior Siavii. The hope is that a larger "wave" will result in fresher and more productive personnel.

Furthermore, the linebacker corps projects to be much more active and physical than a year ago, as youngsters Keyaron Fox (LOLB) and Kawika Mitchell (MLB) team up with newcomer Kendrell Bell (ROLB). Bell is a proven commodity when healthy, and Fox has shown flashes of brilliance during the preseason.

While most of the Jets offensive unit returns intact, there has to be some concern about the losses of ROT Kareem McKenzie (Giants) and TE Anthony Becht (Bucs). Adrian Jones is an athletic replacement at right tackle, but he is much smaller and far less experienced. While the Jets get a potential upgrade in terms of pass-catching at tight end, neither Chris Baker nor Doug Jolley is the blocker Becht was. Against a beefed up, deeper and improved Chiefs run defense, this matchup will serve as a litmus test for what was one of the premier running attacks in 2004.

Passing: Pennington does his best work off of play-action, because he does an outstanding job of selling play-fakes and freezing linebackers and safeties. The Jets do not have the personnel to spread things out and spray the ball around the field, but they can be very effective throwing the ball as a complement to the running attack.

Pennington is reunited with his favorite target in WR Coles, and Heimerdinger certainly will look to get this pitch-and-catch combo off to a quick start, especially because of the mismatch Coles will have against Chiefs RDC Dexter McCleon. If the Chiefs leave McCleon on an island, look for Pennington to work his magic off the play-action. Pennington doesn't have the arm strength to consistently exploit this matchup vertically, but he has good timing and will find ways to get the explosive Coles the ball with room to run after the catch once he gains separation from McCleon.

The Chiefs should be improved in terms of their overall pass defense thanks to the additions of Surtain (LDC) and Knight (SS). Knight should be able to hold up against TEs Jolley or Baker when asked to match up one-on-one. Surtain also will give Cunningham some flexibility because of his ability to keep WR Justin McCareins in check on an island. However, the Chiefs must get more pressure from their interior than they got a year ago, and they also need LBs Mitchell and Fox to play with discipline, as Pennington will exploit the youngsters if they get caught peeking in the backfield.

When the Chiefs have the ball
Rushing: The skill players garner most of the attention on the Chiefs' offense, but the success of this unit all starts up front with arguably the league's premier offensive line.

In what promises to be one of the best trench matchups of Week 1, the Chiefs' front-five will look to keep the Jets hybrid 3-4/4-3 front in check. The Jets will miss the presence of NT Jason Ferguson (Cowboys), but they still are loaded with talent in their front-seven.

John Abraham returns as the hybrid DE/OLB on the right side, but he will split time with the emerging Bryan Thomas. When the team is in its base 4-3 alignment on first and second downs, don't be surprised to see Thomas starting at the RDE position opposite LDE Shaun Ellis. That gives the Jets their biggest personnel in order to stop the run, and it also allows Abraham to stay fresh as a pass rusher on third downs and later in the game.

The most important matchup will come in the middle, where NTs James Reed and Lance Legree will rotate versus OC Casey Wiegmann. As one of the toughest and most consistent centers in the league, Wiegmann should be able to handle the one-two punch without double-team help. If that's the case, it will free up LOG Brian Waters to help pick up stunts and blitzes. At times we also could see Waters shift over after the snap and work against the NT, which would free up Wiegmann to provide double-team help against standout DT Dewayne Robertson.

If the Chiefs' front-five can handle the Jets defensive front-four consistently, RBs Holmes and Larry Johnson should have running room, because FB Tony Richardson will do a good job of reaching the second-level and getting a body on MLB Jonathan Vilma.

Passing: The Chiefs' offense matches up a lot better on the ground than it does in the air in this game. There is a good deal of diversity in the Chiefs' passing attack thanks to the versatility of Holmes and Gonzalez.

However, the Chiefs do not possess good playmaking potential at the wide receiver position. With Johnnie Morton gone, Eddie Kennison is really the Chiefs' only reliable target at wide receiver, and he is slowing with age. There also is very little proven talent outside of Kennison, as second-year pro Sammie Parker moves into the No. 2 WR spot, and Dante Hall is decent, at best, as the No. 3 WR.

The Jets should see the benefits of signing CB Law immediately, as his ability to lock up one-on-one versus Kennison will free up coordinator Donnie Henderson to be much more aggressive with his schemes. For starters, Henderson will frequently be able to cheat SS Oliver Celestin up into the box as an extra run supporter.

Furthermore, on obvious passing downs, Henderson will have more personnel freed up to blitz, or he can play more cover-2 looks with safeties Celestin and Erik Coleman in order to better protect the middle of the field against Gonzalez. If Abraham and Ellis can provide a consistent rush off the perimeter, and if Vilma can hold up one-on-one against Holmes out of the backfield, Green could be in for an unusually frustrating afternoon in the opener.

John_Wayne
09-06-2005, 06:40 PM
Furthermore, the linebacker corps projects to be much more active and physical than a year ago, as youngsters Keyaron Fox (LOLB) and Kawika Mitchell (MLB) team up with newcomer Kendrell Bell (ROLB). Bell is a proven commodity when healthy, and Fox has shown flashes of brilliance during the preseason.

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I guess Derrick Johnson isn't going to play. He's not much of a factor anyway, right?

xxedge72x
09-06-2005, 06:44 PM
Furthermore, the linebacker corps projects to be much more active and physical than a year ago, as youngsters Keyaron Fox (LOLB) and Kawika Mitchell (MLB) team up with newcomer Kendrell Bell (ROLB). Bell is a proven commodity when healthy, and Fox has shown flashes of brilliance during the preseason.

====================

I guess Derrick Johnson isn't going to play. He's not much of a factor anyway, right?

The article isn't totally accurate but the gist of it is pretty much right on. The Jets are starting Kerry Rhodes and not Oliver Celestin, just to point out another error.

NaptownChief
09-06-2005, 06:46 PM
"However, they have greater depth at both spots thanks to the addition of DE Carlos Hall, as well as the maturation of 2004 second-round pick DT Junior Siavii. The hope is that a larger "wave" will result in fresher and more productive personnel."

Depth coming from two guys that missed 95% of training camp and preseason? Not exactly something I am counting on.

whoman69
09-06-2005, 08:55 PM
"However, they have greater depth at both spots thanks to the addition of DE Carlos Hall, as well as the maturation of 2004 second-round pick DT Junior Siavii. The hope is that a larger "wave" will result in fresher and more productive personnel."

Depth coming from two guys that missed 95% of training camp and preseason? Not exactly something I am counting on.
That caught me as well. I'm just hoping that we dodge the bullet with our DTs like we did when Bartee went down and we started the season with only 3 CBs.

NewChief
09-06-2005, 09:04 PM
I agree with their assessment of Dante. I wish they'd stop trying to pretend that he's a true WR. There are only a few plays where's he's a viable target (some slants and the little hitch pass out to the side when he's on the line of scrimmage). Trying to lay it up over someone and hit him is nearly impossible unless the defender is completely beat.

morphius
09-06-2005, 09:10 PM
I have to wonder if Law can keep up with Parker or even Kennison if he doesn't get the bump. One would think at least once in the game pull Gonzo on a short route deeper then the LB's to pull the safety up and hit the super fast Parker on a post for an easy score.

Kind of the same thing we did to Champ last year, only Parker is faster then Kennison.

Iowanian
09-06-2005, 09:11 PM
I think they're a little off on the "no offensive upgrade"....as Parker is alot faster than Morton...and the addition of Wilson, who admittedly hasn't shown the coasters anything in a real game yet...yet.

nychief
09-06-2005, 09:14 PM
The season is over. sigh.


Oh wait, we are at home! (Although we were 4-4 at arrrowhead last season)

Oh wait! I live in New York and watched that sorry assed QB and aged running back - not win their division and beat a marty team in the playoffs (WOW!).

Seriously, this will be a tight game, ending in a chief W.

Oh wait, we are

Iowanian
09-06-2005, 09:20 PM
I'll be interested to see how Pennington plays in arrowhead, when he's been hit so hard he doesn't realize his helmet is on sideways by a blitzing OLB.

nychief
09-06-2005, 09:24 PM
I'll be interested to see how Pennington plays in arrowhead, when he's been hit so hard he doesn't realize his helmet is on sideways by a blitzing OLB.


what we disagree in politics... we agreed in in DEFENSE! :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Iowanian
09-06-2005, 09:26 PM
Apparently the problem with your politics, is that you've been hit by a blitzing KC LB.

Shout out, if you'd like the facemask turned back to the right...but I'm sure you know you're going to get hit alot, when Ted Kennedy and Denise are your Offensive Tackles.

Pennington is going to get beat like he stole money from Bell's grandma.

nychief
09-06-2005, 10:28 PM
Unlike the DC forum (and DC itself), football has rules and final scores: CHIEFS 35 JETS 24