Chiefs vs. Eagles: Offensive Players Kansas City’s Defense Must Stop

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

It may only be week three of the 2013 NFL season, but Thursday Night Football will feature a huge early season game between the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles.

Simply put, there’s a lot on the line.

For the Chiefs, a possible 3-0 start is at stake, as is the respect that comes with it. Considering this is an organization that only won two games total last season, starting the season with three straight wins would be huge.

Oh, new head coach Andy Reid also spent 14 years as coach of the Eagles before this season, so there’s that as well.

If Kansas City wants to win, it’s going to come down to stopping the high-powered Chip Kelly orchestrated offense, so without further ado, here are three Eagles the Chiefs’ defense must shut down this Thursday night.

 

1. DeSean Jackson, WR

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Make no mistake about it, DeSean Jackson will spread the field for Philadelphia’s offense. The Eagles have been going to him early and often, and he’s responded by catching 16 passes for 297 yards and two touchdowns.

Jackson has big play ability, so the Chiefs may want to consider utilizing bracket coverage on him. Basically that means a corner will have him on underneath routes, with a safety playing over top. The only issue with that is that bracket coverage will open up the field for another wideout in Philly’s offense.

Still, Jackson is averaging 18.6 yards per catch, so he’ll need to be the main focus of Kansas City’s defense.

 

2. LeSean McCoy, RB

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

LeSean McCoy is a dynamic weapon out of the backfield for Philadelphia.  The Eagles are ranked No. 2 in the NFL rushing the ball, per ESPN, and much of that has to do with McCoy. In two games, he’s put up 237 yards and a touchdown on 42 carries. That includes an 184 yard performance against Washington in Week 1.

McCoy can also be utilized as a pass-catcher out of the backfield, and so far he’s notched six receptions for 119 yards for the Eagles.

Stopping McCoy on the ground will be a must for Kansas City, as it will make the Eagles one-dimensional, but the Chiefs must also pay attention to him leaking out of the backfield.

 

3. Michael Vick, QB

Jeffrey G. Pittenger-USA TODAY Sports

Kelly could not have asked for a better quarterback to run his offense than Michael Vick. While not the explosive and dynamic superstar he once was, Vick is still one of the most athletic quarterbacks in the NFL. Plus, he’s getting it done with his arm.

In two games this season, Vick has thrown for 631 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions. Yes, you read that right—zero interceptions.

He’s also rushed for 77 yards and two touchdowns, fumbling twice and losing one fumble, though.

For Kansas City to win, the Chiefs will have to force Vick into mistakes, and that often times means getting him to scramble. It’s a catch-22, because on one-hand, he’s a dangerous runner. On the other, he also struggles with ball-security.

The Chiefs’ secondary has also been opportunistic, so look for them to be aggressive to try to bring out shades of the old, inconsistent Vick.

 

Topics: DeSean Jackson, Kansas City Chiefs, LeSean McCoy, Michael Vick

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  • Blake Molina

    If Flowers can’t go, hopefully the much larger Sean Smith can play Jackson physically, jam him, and disrupt his routes.

    With “Shady” McCoy, the LB’s have to break down and wrap up. Gotta have 11 red helmets to the ball.

    I almost don’t want Poe shooting gaps and flushing Vick out of the pocket. Poe scoots for being almost 350, but he won’t catch Vick, and we all know Mike is deadly at extending plays

    • Chuck Burrell

      Yeah let’s just not rush the qb at all….. dumb

      • Blake Molina

        No I said Poe come straight up the middle. Of course I want Bob Sutton to unleash EVERY week. But I’d rather keep Vick in the pocket than flush him out and let him run.

        • Spencer

          Vick he has been sacked 277 times in his 12 yr career for a reason, (technically 111 games). He gets sacked basically 2.5 times a game because of his scrambling. You make it sound like he can just run around everyone like he is a god. He has fumbled that ball twice this year already in 2 games, 7 the yr before in 10 games. 9 fumbles in the last 12 games. 9 fumbles on a total of 77 attempts. He fumbles the ball every 8.5 times he runs, I almost want him to run a lot with those #s. No you pressure the hell out of this guy, and if Poe can get up the middle Vick isn’t just going to be able to run around Houston and Hali as if they are just giving Vick wide open lanes to scramble throu. Sure he might break 1 or 2, but seriously, I like those odds in favor of us.

          Edit 4 of those fumbles were lost, but every time he drops the damn thing he gives us a nice juicy chance to take it from him.

          • Andrew Kulha

            I personally wouldn’t mind flushing Vick out and letting him run because of one reason: fumbles.

          • cd3382

            Exactly!

      • PunjabiPete

        I thought you were being serious, and for a second was going to agree with you. The best thing we can do is contain Vick and make him win on his arm. If we flush the pocket and get him out in open space, he’s gone. I think it would be good to tell the DL to stay home and get their hands up, wave them around in the air… possibly waving them like they just didn’t care…

        I think if we can do that and keep Smith/ Flowers dry humping Jackson into the ground every play, we can limit what they are able to accomplish. I wouldn’t be shocked if that wasn’t the strategy for tomorrow.

        • Chuck Burrell

          To keep contain, does not mean to “call off the dogs” and not rush Vick. NFL OLBs and DEs should be disciplined enough to be able to rush from the edge and still complete their assignment of not losing contain. The key is to keep Vick guessing as to when we will be bringing pressure and when we will drop 8+ so he will remain uncomfortable. Uncomfortable Vick = turnovers for the red team. You have underestimated the hunger and playmaking ability of our defense, my friend. Spencer and Andrew have it right; Even if he breaks free for a couple runs, he’ll eventually cough up the rock.

          • PunjabiPete

            I hope I have, I would love seeing Poe crushing Vick… in a sportsmanlike way, of course. I’m already excited for the game!

    • Stacy D. Smith

      I said the same thing earlier. Poe’s pocket collapsing will flush Vick out of the pocket.

  • Stacy D. Smith

    McCoy and Vick are the two biggest offensive concerns.
    If we can keep Vick in the barn and not allow McCoy to run all over us, I like our chances.

  • Conman23

    Chiefs will have a HUGE game tomorrow! Mark my words:
    1. Vick will be sacked 7 times—J. Houston 3, T. Hali, 3, Poe 1—(losing one for a fumble) and throw 3 interceptions.
    2. Jamaal Charles will accumulate over 200 total yards (140 rushing, 60 receiving)
    3. Alex Smith will have a breakout game with 3 TDs plus an extra TD on a rush.
    4. Chiefs win on the national stage 38-17

  • BlindChow

    “He’s also rushed for 77 yards and two touchdowns, fumbling twice and losing one fumble, though.”

    To be fair, the one lost fumble was an uncaught ball that was ruled a lateral, not a typical strip during a run.

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