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Old 09-20-2013, 02:55 PM  
DaFace DaFace is offline
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A Broncos blogger's take on the Chiefs

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Beware the Kansas City Chiefs
Ted Bartlett Sep 20, 2013 3:30 PM

Happy Friday, friends. I still havenít had the four hours or so necessary to watch the All-22 of the Broncos-Giants game, and then write an article on it. Iím planning to do that tomorrow, so check the site on a Saturday. (I know you all have the capability.) I actually planned to watch the film last night, but I got caught up watching the Chiefs-Eagles game instead.

Youíre not going to like this, but I thought it was time that we all came to the realization that the Chiefs are legitimate. Briefly, today, Iíll share some thoughts on this most regrettable of topics.

For Kansas City, it all starts with their ability to play defense, specifically man-to-man coverage on defense. They have two above-average man corners in Brandon Flowers and Sean Smith, and they also have safety Eric Berry, whoís proving to be very capable at covering TEs man-to-man.

When you can play man coverage (like the Broncos can, as well), you get more options tactically than youíd have if your guys could only hold up in zone. If you can play 5-on-5, with one high safety, youíre left with a free guy, to either use as an extra rusher, or as a robber type of player in coverage.

Whatís maybe even more impressive about the Chiefs is that theyíre getting dominant play off both edges (Justin Houston and Tamba Hali) and on the nose, with the vastly improved Dontari Poe. This Chiefs team can really generate some pressure on the QB, and that dovetails nicely with being able to lock down good receivers outside.

I saw some comments in the Lard today saying that the Chiefs looked like an average team. I donít agree with that. As I watched them, I thought they looked a good deal like the 2011 49ers, and that team probably should have been in the Super Bowl.

Alex Smith has been doing an excellent job of managing the game, and the Chiefs have zero turnovers through three games. At this point, nobody can say that Smith is a fluke when it comes to protecting the football. In 2011, his interception rate was 1.1%, which led the NFL. In 2012, it was 2.3%, which tied with Matt Ryan for tenth. This year, obviously, itís zero. He is good at not throwing the ball to the other team.

Smith isnít really a big play guy, but with the defense Kansas City has, he doesnít have to be. He can matriculate the ball down the field, and do well enough by getting the ball to the open guy short. Heís also added 115 rushing yards in three games, which is a good amount for a QB.

Thereís a way to win in the NFL, by playing good defense (particularly against the pass), and by winning the turnover battle. Thatís what the 49ers did the last couple years, and thatís what this yearís Chiefs team is doing.

I said in an email to the other IAOFM guys yesterday that the Chiefs were probably destined to regress to the mean on turnovers, but the more I think about it, the less I think they will. Smith is huge in that regard, as mentioned, but itís notable that the team has only even fumbled the ball once in three games. (That was credited to Smith.)

Recovering fumbles is random, and highly dependent on luck, but not fumbling the ball isnít random. Itís a skill, and a discipline, and a coaching priority. So far, it looks like this is another skill that the Chiefs have going for them.


I know what some of you are thinking - they haven't played anybody yet! How do you know? Is it fully clear yet who is a good team and who's a bad team? I'll grant you that Jacksonville is in rough shape this year. Dallas, though, has the talent to compete with anybody in the NFL. The fact that KC's corners mostly won against Dallas's WRs is compelling evidence of the quality of the Chiefs defense. As for Philadelphia, they have pretty good offensive talent too, and their scheme makes that talent a step better. (Admittedly, their defense isn't good.)

I donít necessarily think that the Chiefs are ready to win a Super Bowl this year, but I do think theyíll give anybody they play a hard time on any given Sunday. To beat their defense, you have to run the ball well, and beat up on their nickel CB with good play from the slot. Philly got them for 260 yards rushing, and 9.3 yards per carry, and it's clear that the Chiefs can still be run on.

To beat their offense, itís helpful to bottle up the running game, and to keep Smith in long yardage situations. If you let him get to 3rd-and-4 very often, heís going to beat you. Over the long run of a game, Smith makes up for not being great at drilling the 20-yard deep out by almost always finding the right receiver on 3rd-and-4, and almost always putting the short throw right where it needs to be.

I would say that the Chiefs are probably the second-most impressive team Iíve seen in the AFC so far this season. Itís a credit to Andy Reid, and the smart moves they made, like keeping LT Branden Albert, signing Sean Smith and DE Mike DeVito, trading for Alex Smith, and picking up Donnie Avery (who has skills) off the scrap heap. I think they may have erred in taking RT Eric Fisher first overall (I thought the best players in the class were DT Star Lotulelei and OLB Jarvis Jones), but Fisher is still likely going to be a good player.

Itís early, but we should watch out for the Chiefs. If they can beat Houston at home in Week 7, thereís a pretty good chance we could see 8-0 Kansas City visiting Denver on November 17th (coming off a bye) to play a 9-0 Broncos team. How exciting would that be?
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Old 09-20-2013, 03:54 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaFace View Post
Yep. As the article kind of alludes to, we're in good shape to beat up on average teams and win a lot of games. However, at some point, you do have to put up some points.

I hate to say it, but we're kind of seeing a form of Martyball. If it's a stepping stone to respectability and being competitive, I'm all for it. I do hope that a boring, ball control offense isn't our MO long-term though.
The offense is going to come around as the playcalling improves, the oline improves and the Chiefs get some sort of resolution at tight end.
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Old 09-20-2013, 03:55 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Mavericks Ace View Post
Geeeeee.


Ill get crushed for beating my chest here, and im not really, but that's the exact thing that I said that bringing in Sutton, and Alex Smith was going to do for the chiefs. They were shaping up to be exactly like them.

And they are. id even wager at this point of the season, this defense looks a HELL of a lot better than sf's at that same point.
Thanks Mecca.
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Old 09-20-2013, 03:58 PM   #18
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Thanks Mecca.
Awww, now im a know it all because I explained how things were shaping up to work out by the moves that were made, and people trashed thrashed and degraded me?

Now, im not allowed to point out that I was actually NOT trolling, and was trying to be informative?

Cool.

I didn't know that with as much shit as I took for trying to be positive about the Chiefs, that when it all blew back and hit those same dudes in the faces, that I wasn't allowed to say shit about it.

My bad......
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:00 PM   #19
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Exactly this. Made worse by the injuried TE's.
truth right here

alex smith desperately needs the TE to not look very much like matt cassel. Why we did not use the fb shermon earlier in the game kept pissing me off. that seems like a natural adjustment from our use of TEs to use fb/hb patterns.

oh, and dexter needs to sit firmly on the bench. he is doing nothing for this offense!!! not doing anything for STs either.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:00 PM   #20
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That was a well reasoned piece, if things keep up like this our rivalry will have teeth again.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:00 PM   #21
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"I'm not trying to pound my chest, but let me pound my chest."

GTFO.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:01 PM   #22
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Great news.


The AFC West is getting back to where they belong.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:08 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Ceej View Post
"I'm not trying to pound my chest, but let me pound my chest."

GTFO.
lots of dudes were beating their chest about how WRONG I was going to be.

Did you tell them to GTFO as well?

Yeahhhhh........No you didn't. That's why I don't really pay you any attention. no one was there with my back telling them to stop beating their chests......
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:08 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by notorious View Post
Great news.


The AFC West is getting back to where they belong.
The Broncos Chiefs games this year, are going to be Classics.....
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:09 PM   #25
DaFace DaFace is offline
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Originally Posted by Mavericks Ace View Post
The Broncos Chiefs games this year, are going to be Classics.....
I'm still pretty doubtful we'll be able to hang with them, but it's definitely going to be closer than I would have predicted before the season started.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:10 PM   #26
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Heh. I like the homage to Hank Stram. Good write-up from a donk.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:11 PM   #27
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Heh. I like the homage to Hank Stram. Good write-up from a donk.
I noticed that as well. My coworker (Bronco fan) who sent this to me didn't even realize there was any significance to the phrase.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:11 PM   #28
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They seemed to sell out on hitting Vick and disrupting his rhythm in the passing game. They can do the same thing with Peyton, and he's not any threat to break out on long runs. The risk there is the receiver core, but as fast as Hali, Houston and Poe (and DJ and Berry and the DBs) can get into the backfield, that could be a challenge, too.

What can't happen is Manning standing like a statue behind a wall of blockers scanning the field for 5 seconds without so much as a blade of grass staining his jersey.

The flip side is that their defense is also very good, and so far this season our offense doesn't look very reliable. Our defense stopping Denver likely still results in them scoring 24+ points. Their defense stopping us probably means 10 at this point.
Where the Broncos blow the Eagles off the map is in the WR corps.

It's barely even the same sport if you're trying to compare the two. Thomas is a much much tougher matchup for Flowers (much like Bryant in terms of size/speed); Decker is a bigger, stronger, better route running version of Cooper and Welker is a quicker version of Avant (though Avant has better hands).

We won't be able to go with the single-high safety look against those guys; way too much talent.

Trying to extrapolate yesterdays defense to the Broncos is an exercise in futility - the Broncos are a much much different creature.

That said - watch the D vs. the Giants closely. Nicks, Cruz, Randle, Myers is equal to or better than Thomas, Decker, Welker, Thomas. How the Chiefs are able to match up with the Giants pass-catchers will tell us a lot about how they'll do against the Broncos.

Truth be told, both matchups scare the hell out of me.
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:11 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mavericks Ace View Post
lots of dudes were beating their chest about how WRONG I was going to be.

Did you tell them to GTFO as well?

Yeahhhhh........No you didn't. That's why I don't really pay you any attention. no one was there with my back telling them to stop beating their chests......
All of this bullshit is irrelevant to me.

You preface posts by saying you're not beating your chest, and do it in the next sentence.

I don't know you - nor would I like to. But, in general I dislike people who try to build themselves up on an internet message board. Like, you're trying to impress a bunch of ****ing strangers.

"Guys, see? See!! I was right."
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:12 PM   #30
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I'm still pretty doubtful we'll be able to hang with them, but it's definitely going to be closer than I would have predicted before the season started.
I think the game plan, will be very similar to how they approached the Eagles. You cant try to shoot it out with them. They are too strong with the pass game. But you can grind them. Will be a great chess match.
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