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Tribal Warfare
08-16-2009, 04:05 PM
The Morning After (http://www.kcchiefs.com/news/2009/08/16/the_morning_after/)
Aug 16, 2009, 6:01:32 AM by Josh Looney


Too many mistakes at inopportune times; that’s what ultimately sunk the Chiefs in a swamp of a preseason opener at Arrowhead last night. The rain that came down in sheets throughout the majority of the evening was likely a key factor in causing the Chiefs two turnovers (both fumbles). But the rain wasn’t the cause of costly mental mistakes that seemed to keep the Chiefs from gaining much momentum.

“We didn’t get the result we wanted tonight,” Head coach Todd Haley said yesterday following the Chiefs 16-10 defeat vs. Houston. “I think we made too many mistakes to think we could have a chance to win a game. You can’t expect to win a game with the penalties we had in the situations that we had.”

Kansas City actually committed fewer fouls than the Texans (8 for 65 yards vs. Houston’s 11 for 68 yards), but the penalties that KC did commit were costly, either extending a Texans drive or putting the Chiefs in an undesirable situation. There is, however, no room for doom and gloom. There were positives to take from last night’s Chiefs debut and this is no time for Chiefs fans to panic.

This is a new team with new players, playing for new coaches who run new schemes. A learning curve is to be expected during the preseason. Mental mistakes are part of the game at this stage. They can be corrected and, judging by the accountability that Haley puts on his players, they will be corrected on the practice field.

“We’re back to work on Monday, and we’re back in pads,” Haley added.

Without further adieu, let’s visits some of the positives and negatives of last night’s exhibition opener.

Things to Cheer

* Short-field Defense – A very gutsy performance by the defense, in my opinion. They made the Texans settle for field goals after taking the field in less than desirable situations. Keeping teams out of the end zone after a sudden change keeps your team in a football game. It also boasts a defenses’ confidence. A confident defense is a dangerous defense.
* Brodie’s Return – QB Brodie Croyle returned to the field for the first time since suffering a season-ending knee injury vs. Tennessee last season. Croyle finished as the Chiefs leading passer (12-of-18 for 145 yards) and looked poised throughout the evening to post a 91.2 QB rating.
* Leggett’s Sack – CB Maurice Leggett came up with a big play blitzing out of his nickel position. What’s most exciting about the play is that it looked like a “confusion sack,” one that QB Matt Schaub didn’t see coming. Nice disguise and execution by Leggett.
* #14’s Crackback – WR Quinten Lawrence logged one of the biggest hits of the day when he laid a crushing block on a Texans defensive back attempting to tackle a scrambling QB Tyler Thigpen. Lawrence broke off his route when he saw Thigpen scramble and laid an ear-hole block downfield that sprung Thigpen for another seven yards near the goal line. These are the type of plays that Haley wants to see his receivers make.
* LB Corey Mays – Mays got an opportunity to start at middle linebacker and appeared to seize the moment. The real evaluation lies in the game tape, but it sure seemed like Mays had a nose for the football and excited his teammates.
* Succop’s Kick – We’ve seen Kansas City’s rookie kicker make longer kicks at camp, but his 48-yarder through a driving rain storm was still quite impressive. It also gave the Chiefs a much-needed boost going into the half.
* Bowe Off The Bench – WR Dwayne Bowe started the game in an unfamiliar position watching the first-team offense from the sidelines. But there was no sulking. Bowe got into the game and immediately made an impact with some tough catches. He finished as the Chiefs leading receiver (5-70).

Areas to Improve

* 3rd Down Conversions – The Chiefs were 3-of-13 on third down. “You can’t expect to win games converting 23% of your third downs.” – Todd Haley
* Mental Errors – We already touched on some of these, but a few big runs on the Texans 94-yard TD drive were also likely the result of multiple mental errors.
* P Matt Turk’s Wheels – What an odd play. The Chiefs were clearly setting up a return when P Matt Turk mishandled a snap and was forced to go on the run. WR Taurus Johnson was the only player in pursuit of Turk, while the rest of the return team had their backs to the football, setting up the return. Had the Chiefs sent the team on a block instead of setting up a return, Turk would have surely been taken down for a potentially game-changing turnover on downs. Instead, Turk took off untouched for seven yards and a first down. A bit of bad luck? Perhaps. But this will be one that the coaches won’t like in the film room.
* Early Disruptions – Although he did face some defensive pressure, Texans QB Matt Schaub was able to get in an early groove, completing all seven of his pass attempts before exiting the game. A collective defensive effort, it can be a long day during the regular season if a quarterback is able to get hot early.

Without question, Coach Haley and his staff will have things to work on during the next week of camp in River Falls, but there were also positives last night that this team can build on heading into their next preseason contest at Minnesota on Friday.

TEX
08-16-2009, 04:55 PM
Run defense wasn't good against the Texan's # 1's, especially when Brown came into teh game. The Chiefs # 1 offense looked Herm-like. YIKES!

Mr. Krab
08-16-2009, 04:56 PM
When is the last time we successfullly disguised a blitz?

Kerberos
08-16-2009, 05:05 PM
When is the last time we successfullly disguised a blitz?

I would think it had to be CBG


"Chiefs Before Gunther" and that would have been before 1995? 96? 97?

When the F*** did we bring in Goonther?