There is really no way to sugarcoat it, the Chiefs got their butts kicked on Sunday by the Miami Dolphins.
In a loss like the Chiefs suffered yesterday, it can be hard to pick out individual failures simply because the entire team played so poorly it is almost unfair to single any one thing out.
Then again, it wasn’t exactly fair that we all had to spend our afternoon watching that sorry excuse for football so I’m going to do it anyway.
Join me Addicts and let’s wash away the bitter with a little blame placing.
1 No pass rush
It is actually insulting to the term “pass rush” to say that the Kansas City Chiefs pass rush is bad. It isn’t bad. It is non-existent. It has been all year.
I am actually amazed that Tamba Hali somehow has six sacks. He might as well be out there all by himself.
The Chiefs were so bad yesterday that even when they blitzed they couldn’t get to Matt Moore. It was shades of Herm’s 2008 team that set a record for pass rushing futility.
The Chiefs tried to address the problem by taking Justin Houston in the third round of the draft. Unfortunately, thus far, Houston has shown only potential. That, combined with Wallace Gilberry’s sudden drop off in production has really hurt KC.
Don’t underestimate how the loss of Eric Berry has affected KC’s pass rush either. Berry could not only get after the QB himself, but simply having him in the game made blitzing much less risky for Romeo Crennel.
But when Sabby Piscitelli is your strong safety, you’re taking your own life in your hands when you blitz.
2 “Shabby” Piscitelli and Donald Washington
Good grief these two are bad. They’re like wisdom teeth. You don’t need them, they aren’t good for anything and they only end up causing you unnecessary pain.
Piscitelli is absolutely terrible and I’ve never understood why he was on the team in the first place. Keep in mind that he was the primary backup when Eric Berry first went down. If that doesn’t give you nightmares I don’t know what will.
The only reason Washington still appears to be on the team is because the alternative is freaking Sabby Piscitelli!
At some point yesterday the Chiefs gave up on Piscitelli (again) and put in Reshard Langford. I’m not sure Langford is any better but he’s not Shabby and for now, that is good enough for me.
Jon McGraw is more valuable than we ever could have imagined. I wish him a very speedy recovery.
Count on both Piscitelli and Washington being gone next season.
3 The Chiefs got out-coached
I think Kansas City has one of the best coaching staffs in the league. You don’t win four games in a row after the start the Chiefs had and with the personnel the Chiefs have without some damn fine game planning. That being said, Todd Haley and Romeo Crennel got their clipboards handed to them yesterday by Tony Sporano.
Hey, it happens. The Broncos came out with an absolutely brilliant game plan around this time last year and totally humiliated the Chiefs.
I mentioned this on our post game show last night but I think Romeo Crennel is both a blessing and a curse at times. He is so good at making up for deficiencies but he often has to sell his players out to do so. Early in 2010, the scouting report on the Chiefs that you could ram the ball down their throats. Crennel knew it and the Chiefs sold out to stop the run early in the year. And it worked. Until the Broncos figured our what they were doing and came out firing. The Chiefs weren’t ready and by the time they knew what hit them, they were toast.
I think the same thing happened yesterday. The Dolphins figured out that the Chiefs couldn’t rush the passer. They knew the Chiefs were in sorry shape at safety. They knew the Chiefs would probably bet on them trying to get Reggie Bush going. So they came out can ran the ball only four times in the first half.
The Chiefs weren’t ready and it showed.
4 No pass protection
The Dolphins blitzed the crap out of the Chiefs’ offensive line and Matt Cassel never had a chance. I don’t know what was happening down field but I doubt the Dolphins secondary was good enough to shut down Bowe, Breaston and Baldwin. I just think the blitzing was so effective that the KC receivers couldn’t finish their routes.
Matt Cassel got skittish early. Had he not ran for his life a few times he probably would have gotten sacked ten times.
The Chiefs have kept teams off Cassel’s back by continuing to run the ball even when it wasn’t working. Yesterday they weren’t able to do that because they fell too far behind.
When you’re 0-7, your have nothing to lose. You can take a lot more risks with your game planning and it seems the Dolphins used that to their advantage Sunday.
5 General lack of focus
I don’t know if the Chiefs came into the game unfocused or they lose their focus during the game. Whatever happened, when the going got tough the Chiefs crumbled like a house of cards in a hurricane.
The lack of focus showed all over the place. The Chiefs were missing blocks, missing tackles, messing up kicks and dropping passes.
In the end, the Chiefs just didn’t have it Sunday. The good news is, they can easily bounce back next week. They are prone to mental lapses but they’ve also proved to us that they can play well and win football games.
The trick is just getting them do the latter more than the former.