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Old 04-05-2013, 05:40 PM  
Tribal Warfare Tribal Warfare is offline
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Covitz: Chiefs defense plans to be greedy

Chiefs defense plans to be greedy
By RANDY COVITZ
The Kansas City Star
It was bad enough that the Chiefs gave the ball away a league-most 37 times on offense last year, but to compound their woes, the defense took it away a league-low 13 times.

If there’s one mandate for new defensive coordinator Bob Sutton, it’s finding a way to create turnovers.

The Chiefs’ seven interceptions were tied for fewest in the league. Their six fumble recoveries were tied for the sixth-fewest.

Though the Chiefs will continue to play the 3-4 scheme under Sutton, he plans to bring the aggressive, takeaway mentality that he taught as linebackers coach for the New York Jets under Rex Ryan.

“Coach Sutton is definitely going to bring an attack-style defense to our ball club,” said inside linebacker Derrick Johnson. “He’s already talked about it, about taking the ball away. One of my goals is to take the ball away … and score. That’s the name of the game. Of course the main objective is to win, but takeaways are going to be big for us this year.”

The Chiefs’ seven interceptions last year were the fewest in a season in club history, and that includes two strike-shortened seasons. In the 15-game strike season of 1987, the Chiefs set the previous franchise-low of 11 interceptions; and in the nine-game strike season of 1982, they had 12. The six fumble recoveries matched the franchise record-low performance set in 2011.

In fact, the Chiefs have not returned an interception for a touchdown in their last 26 games, or since safety Kendrick Lewis and cornerback Brandon Flowers each turned in a pick-six at Oakland on Oct. 23, 2011.

And the last fumble return for a touchdown by the defense was way back on Sept. 30, 2007 against San Diego when Johnson sacked and stripped Philip Rivers, and Tyron Brackenridge returned the fumble 50 yards for the score.

That’s a span of 92 games without a defensive return of a fumble for a touchdown, though the special teams have done it three times in that period, most recently by Edgar Jones last year.

So while the Chiefs defense might have sent Johnson, safety Eric Berry and outside linebackers Tamba Hali and Justin Houston to the Pro Bowl, none made game-changing plays in a 2-14 season.

“We’re going to put pressure on the quarterback this year,” Flowers said. “That’s what we’re going to do. We’re not going to let the quarterback sit back there and make decisions on his page. We’re going to try to force the ball out early. We’re bringing in guys that can make plays in the back end, so we can get the ball back to our offense.”

Indeed, two of the Chiefs’ key free-agent signings, cornerbacks Dunta Robinson and Sean Smith, could make a difference with coverage when Houston and Hali can’t get to the quarterback.

“We’ve got to be ballhawks,” said Robinson, who has 17 interceptions in his nine-year career with Houston and Atlanta. “I look at the talent in the secondary, and our goal is to be the top secondary in the league. We have the guys on the back end who can get that done. With Flowers, Berry … we have the pieces to be the best secondary in the league. We’re going to practice like it and on Sunday we’re going to line up and try to play like it.

“For me, it’s all about attitude, the way you carry yourself, the way you prepare leading into Sunday. Your study habits, all of those things make the difference, and they slow the game down. This is a game where it’s good against good, so you have to be prepared.”

It would have been easy for Sutton and new head coach Andy Reid to tear up the defense and return to a 4-3. But the Chiefs’ previous administration drafted players like Houston and nose tackle Dontari Poe specifically for this scheme, and others like Hali and Johnson adapted to it during the past three years.

“I’m excited about the defense staying in that 3-4 scheme, which I had pretty good success over the last two or three years in it,” Johnson said. “It’s changed my career completely around. To stay with it the older I get, it’s perfect.”

The presence of Houston, who had 10 sacks last year, and Hali, who had nine, as well as Johnson, Berry and Flowers, convinced Robinson to sign with Kansas City.

“I’ve never seen a team go 2-14 and have six Pro Bowlers,” Robinson said. “I knew that the talent was definitely there, a few pieces here, a few pieces there, I thought would make a big difference. Bringing in (quarterback) Alex Smith, bringing in corners, I think those were the biggest holes on this football team a year ago.

“I think they filled those holes in the offseason. We just have to be as advertised and as good as we think we are, and I think we’ll make a big difference for this football team.”
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Old 04-05-2013, 07:15 PM   #16
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Any defense in today's pass-happy NFL that sits back with no pressure is toast. Our defense sucked balls last year, not as bad as the offense, but we still sucked
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Old 04-05-2013, 07:16 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PGM View Post
Chiefs plan to outscore opposition next year
are they going to play to win the game and eliminate bad football.
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Old 04-05-2013, 07:33 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by OrtonsPiercedTaint View Post
Covitzing is bad.
I respect a lot of you guys, I really do. But, is there a sports writer / analyst out there that members of Chiefsplanet DON'T think is a dipshit? The spiel is getting pretty old.
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Old 04-05-2013, 07:52 PM   #19
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When the defense has been allowed to attack, they have flashed dominant ability.

I contend that the talent of our players was held back by Romeos outdated scheme...I mean really, These rushbackers shouldn't be in coverage most of the time.
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Old 04-05-2013, 07:52 PM
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Old 04-05-2013, 07:56 PM   #20
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All the more reason to expect a starter caliber SS in the draft to allow Berry to play his natural position and free up LB's to blitz the QB rather than drop back into coverage.
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:12 PM   #21
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"Chiefs QB plans to be needy".
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:14 PM   #22
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With all the fluff that has been jammed in our face for years, this kind of article makes me roll my eyes.


In other words, I will believe it when I see it.
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:22 PM   #23
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“I’ve never seen a team go 2-14 and have six Pro Bowlers,” Robinson said. “I knew that the talent was definitely there....
Ive never seen it either and it was mind boggling the fact that they did have six pro bowlers and such a sorry record. Something was definitely wrong somewhere.

The team does have talent, Im hopeful that the regime change produces better results.
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:24 PM   #24
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Offseason articles suck, doesn't matter who is writing them.

Honestly I don't even know why I read anything that doesn't have to do with a roster move or coaching staff change. Everything that happens on the field I see with my own eyes.
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:30 PM   #25
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Old 04-05-2013, 08:52 PM   #26
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We have the guys on the back end who can get that done. With Flowers, Berry … we have the pieces to be the best secondary in the league. We’re going to practice like it and on Sunday we’re going to line up and try to play like it.


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Old 04-05-2013, 09:01 PM   #27
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I can see Abdullah tearing shit up at SS. Big Hitter.
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Old 04-05-2013, 09:10 PM   #28
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I can see Abdullah tearing shit up at SS. Big Hitter.
Lets call him "the Llama"
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Old 04-05-2013, 09:16 PM   #29
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Will it be Robinson or Abdullah to play opposite of Berry?
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Old 04-05-2013, 09:17 PM   #30
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