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Old 10-16-2013, 10:05 AM  
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Andy blames himself, not Alex, for Chiefs' sputtering offense

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- When you're 6-0 and coming off a 2-14 season, there really shouldn't be any complaining.

There can't be a football fan or scout or executive anywhere on the planet who could have forecast the amazing turnaround general manager John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid have conducted with the Chiefs -- certainly not to the extent of a 6-0 start.

But -- and isn't there always a but? -- there is one small area of concern that even Reid himself continues to address: a sluggish offense.

The Chiefs are 25th in the NFL in offense, chugging along at just 326 yards per game, a remarkably low figure for a team unbeaten this far into the season.

No one is more aware of the offense's struggles than Reid. The offense is his baby.

"Listen, I'm never going to make excuses," Reid said Monday. "That's not how we roll here. But the reality of it is we're a little young, but we have to get better.

"I see some phases we're getting better at. But I've got to do a better job of getting these guys in the right position to succeed. We've all got a little piece of the pie to get things right. We're learning on the fly, but we're going to get better."

The Chiefs likely will have to. Fans in this area have seen this script before. They've seen the Chiefs' teams of the 1990s soar through the regular season on the strength of their overpowering defenses and elite special teams.

Then those fans saw the same teams misfire in the postseason, mainly because the offense couldn't step up and contribute when it had to.

To avoid revisiting that script, the Chiefs must get more production out of quarterback Alex Smith, whose numbers keep sinking.

Smith is 26th in the league in passing yards at just 221.7 per game. He's also 20th in the league with a passer rating of 79.8.

But if you're looking for Reid to point any fingers toward Smith, you'll have a long wait.

Reid knows what kind of team he has. He knows, outside of Jamaal Charles and at times Dwayne Bowe, he doesn't have an explosive offense.

Reid also knows you can win in this league simply by not messing up, and letting the opponent beat itself. The Chiefs are No. 1 in the league in turnover ratio at plus-12, and don't have the appearance of a team that will beat itself anytime soon.

"Not turning the ball over is very important to us," Reid said, "especially when you have a solid defense like we have and the kicking game we have, both from our punter and our kicker."

In that respect, Smith is giving Reid all he needs, even if the offense has that familiar conservative look of the '90s. After all, there is a fine line between wanting more offensive production, and opening the offense up so much that more turnovers occur. Reid isn't likely to stand for that.

"You want to always start off by protecting the ball," Reid said. "There's no fine line there for me. ...

"Alex is doing that. And we need to point out the way Alex continues to manage this offense."

And that is the key in Reid's mind: He simply wants Smith to manage the game, which also includes managing the different personalities in the huddle.

"We've got a guy at quarterback, this kid, he's a stud," Reid said. "The things he does for this team is unbelievable. He's making people around him better. He takes the blame for things -- that's what good leaders do.

"At the same time, he's able to teach and explain to other guys with a clear head. Those are valuable things for us as coaches to see. I'm very pleased with the job (Smith) is doing."

In Reid's mind, let the other quarterbacks around the league possess the pretty passing numbers; Reid will take the ultimate one that counts. That is, for now, 6-0.

Still, Reid also has been around long enough to know that his offense will have to improve as the season wears on, even if it's just incrementally.

And that will be up to Reid himself as the play-caller and architect of the offense, something Reid has mentioned almost every week.

"I think we have done some good things, but we have plenty to work on," Reid said. "I don't think I've done a very good job of putting guys in position to make plays. That has been obvious at times. I have to do a better job."



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Old 10-17-2013, 07:45 AM   #226
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:49 AM   #227
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Originally Posted by KC_Connection View Post
Why sustain drives when you can just go three and out, punt, then force a turnover on defense, though?

Smith knows how to win.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:54 AM   #228
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Originally Posted by Pam Oliver's Forehead View Post
And the people who are impressed by that are the same people who praised Cassel in 2010. The guy had 4 INTs in the first 15 weeks of play. He was being compared to Tom Brady.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:56 AM   #229
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pam Oliver's Forehead View Post
Yes there is.

In 2010 Matt Cassel did a great job of protecting the ball.

He also could not throw down the field to save his life, the same as Alex.

It is almost exactly the same situation now, except Cassel was actually a more productive passer than Alex Smith that year.

Through six weeks that year, Cassel was:



The Chiefs were averaging 21.5 OPPG (I took out defensive/special teams scores).

This year, through six weeks, Alex is:



The Chiefs are averaging 19.5 OPPG this year.

Sure, the Chiefs were 4-2 that year. Why?

1. They lost to Peyton Manning.
2. They lost a game to a team that scored 35 points.

We're going to lose in the same situations with Alex as we did with Cassel in 2010. I guarantee you.
HUGE upgrade... what about the intangible stats? I'm sure Smith is way ahead in those.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:01 AM   #230
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Originally Posted by keg in kc View Post
Not having explosive players does not preclude an offense from being either efficient or productive.


Although, frankly, they do have explosive players. Avery certainly is. Christ, he's averaging 17 yards a catch. And he actually has been behind the defense a number of times, but Smith simply can't get the ball there. That has to be a major part of the problem at this point: when your QB physically can't throw a pass longer than about 30 yards, the defense doesn't have to work real hard to keep everything in front of them.

But I think the biggest problem right now, aside from the line play on the first three drives Sunday (which did clear up after that point) is that Smith has suddenly become wildly inaccurate. He's even missing on the short passes now.
Save the 40 yard bomb against Ten among a couple others
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:03 AM   #231
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He's had several INTs dropped, and the team as a whole has had several fumbles go out of bounds. Fortune has definitely been smiling down on us. Karmic balancing-out from last season's horrors.
EVERY QB has had "several INT's dropped"

JFC....you guys act like you have never watched other teams
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:05 AM   #232
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Originally Posted by Pam Oliver's Forehead View Post
Alex Smith has the good fortune of playing with the #1 defense.

He almost never has to play from behind.

If he did, I have a feeling we'd see a far more turnover prone QB. Right now he has the luxury of almost never having to fit the ball into a tight window when the team really needs it. He basically sat around with his thumb up his ass last game apart from one drive.

Shit, he's already had 6-7 INTs dropped this year. Those are going to be secured if he keeps it up.
And the #1 defense has the fortune of playing with a QB who doesn't turn the ball over and consistently put them in bad positions. It's all a cycle. One benfits from the other...thus it being called a team sport.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:08 AM   #233
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Alex Smith doesn't put the team in bad situations. That's really the only thing he's adding to the teams success. The offensive line isn't helping matters, but he's average at best. If Reid had a chance to trade for Romo he absolutely would. Jason Garrett and the Cowboys defense has more to do with their recent problems than Romo IMO. He's definately not good in the clutch, but I dont see how any Chief wouldn't drool at the thought of Reid working with a talent like that.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:32 AM   #234
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Alex Smith doesn't put the team in bad situations. That's really the only thing he's adding to the teams success. The offensive line isn't helping matters, but he's average at best. If Reid had a chance to trade for Romo he absolutely would. Jason Garrett and the Cowboys defense has more to do with their recent problems than Romo IMO. He's definately not good in the clutch, but I dont see how any Chief wouldn't drool at the thought of Reid working with a talent like that.
Hell, he better get Bryant and Witten while he's at it. Imagine the drooling that would happen with the thought of Reid working with talent like that.
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Old 10-17-2013, 09:56 AM   #235
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Originally Posted by Pam Oliver's Forehead View Post
Yes there is.

In 2010 Matt Cassel did a great job of protecting the ball.

He also could not throw down the field to save his life, the same as Alex.

It is almost exactly the same situation now, except Cassel was actually a more productive passer than Alex Smith that year.

Through six weeks that year, Cassel was:



The Chiefs were averaging 21.5 OPPG (I took out defensive/special teams scores).

This year, through six weeks, Alex is:



The Chiefs are averaging 19.5 OPPG this year.

Sure, the Chiefs were 4-2 that year. Why?

1. They lost to Peyton Manning.
2. They lost a game to a team that scored 35 points.

We're going to lose in the same situations with Alex as we did with Cassel in 2010. I guarantee you.
then we are going to lose to the texans this weekend. and we'll lose to the raiders twice. and the Colts will win too.

sure.
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:00 AM   #236
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then we are going to lose to the texans this weekend. and we'll lose to the raiders twice. and the Colts will win too.

sure.
Exactly, this year KC should only beat the same 2 teams they did last year.
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:04 AM   #237
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then we are going to lose to the texans this weekend. and we'll lose to the raiders twice. and the Colts will win too.

sure.
Yeah, that's what he meant.
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:05 AM   #238
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Originally Posted by petegz28 View Post
And the #1 defense has the fortune of playing with a QB who doesn't turn the ball over and consistently put them in bad positions. It's all a cycle. One benfits from the other...thus it being called a team sport.
I think your O is also pretty good in the time of possession battle, which your D would appreciate.
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:15 AM   #239
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I think your O is also pretty good in the time of possession battle, which your D would appreciate.
If they can go into the bye healthy and come out of it even healthier. They should have plenty of time to watch film and see how to put people in better position to be effective in the offense. Using that time wisely will only help this young offense become better. Look how they were able to implement Chad Hall in the Titans game. I can see more of that coming up with others players. They just need the time to get it together. If they come out of the bye and they are still struggling, then maybe it's fair to hit the panic button.
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:15 AM   #240
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Originally Posted by Pam Oliver's Forehead View Post

We're going to lose in the same situations with Alex as we did with Cassel in 2010. I guarantee you.
Equating outcomes in 2013 with outcomes in 2010, based solely on offense is crazy. Our D appears to be dominant now, it was only a little bit above average in 2010.

Sure, there's no doubt that right now, our offense is worse than it was in 2010, but I'd attribute that exclusively to how bad our O-line is playing. JC averaged 6.4 yards per carry in 2010. Simply unheard of. If JC averaged 6.4 yards this year, we'd be unbeatable. And he was not averaging 6.4 yards in 2010 because opposing Ds were scared of Matt Cassel.
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