Chiefs vs. Bills Recap: What The Stats Say About Kansas City’s Win

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs are 9-0 after beating the Buffalo Bills 23-13 at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Once again, the Chiefs had rely on their defense and special teams to win.

It wasn’t necessarily a thing of beauty, especially on offense, but the Chiefs found a way to get it done on the road, and now they head into the bye week undefeated.

Stats aren’t everything in sports—and it’s not even close—but they can give you a good birds eye view of the trends of a game. Let’s say somebody you know didn’t watch the game and just checked out the box score. What would it tell them?

Let’s take a look at the numbers from this Week 9 clash and find out.

 

Alex Smith: 19-of-29 for 124 yards, 0 touchdowns and 0 interceptions

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

On one hand, it’s good to see that Smith didn’t throw the ball away. This offense is predicated on ball control and security, so anytime Smith can accomplish that, the Chiefs have a good chance to win. With that said, throwing only 124 yards and no touchdowns may fly against the Bills and their third string quarterback, but it’s simply not going to be good enough in the second half of the season.

Peyton Manning can throw for 124 yards in one quarter, let alone during the course of a whole game.

Smith needs to get better and this offense needs to go back to the drawing board during the bye week.

 

Jamaal Charles: 17 Carries, 90 yards, 5.3 yards per carry. Six receptions for six yards. 0 Touchdowns

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Jamaal Charles is the Chiefs best offensive weapon, and when he scores, good things happen for Kansas City. 5.3 yards per carry is excellent, so Charles should get high marks in regard to the running game.

Just six yards through the air is well below his normal production though. Charles really adds an extra element to the passing game coming out of the backfield, and he does a great job of moving the sticks so far. Obviously he couldn’t get it going today.

That leads us to the next stat…

 

First Downs: 15

The Chiefs were only able to notch 15 first downs, compared to 25 from Buffalo. Eight of those first downs came on passing plays, and the rest with the run.

 

Total Offensive Yards: 210

This is not going to get it done in the future. For reference, the Bills put up 470 offensive yards with a first time starting quarterback at the helm.

 

Ryan Succop, 3-for-3, 11 points

Ryan Succop continues to be consistently consistent for the Chiefs. Specials teams can change and win games, and Succop has done that for Kansas City this season.

Dontari Poe: 9 Tackles, 5 Solo Tackles

These are incredible stats for a player who should theoretically be getting double-teamed on every snap. Poe is becoming one of the best defensive tackles in the NFL, and stats like these go a long way towards proving that statement.

 

Sean Smith: 1 Interception returned for a 100 (101) yard touchdown.

When Smith got this pick-six, the Chiefs were down 10-3 and the Bills were knocking on the door of another score. The importance of his interception and score can’t be overstated.

 

Tamba Hali: 4 Tackles, 1 Fumble Recovery, 1 TD

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Tamba Hali’s fumble recovery for a touchdown put the Chiefs up 20-13 in the fourth quarter. The Bills couldn’t recover, and once again, Kansas City’s defense came up big.

 

Chiefs’ Defense:  3 Turnovers, 14 points scored

Kansas City’s defense has single-handedly given them a chance to win every game this season, and the Chiefs have taken advantage of those chances to the tune of a 9-0 start.

 

Conclusion:

I’ve learned two things during my time covering and coaching football.

1. It doesn’t matter how you win. A win is a win, and you should never apologize for winning.

2. There are three facets to the game. Offense, defense and special teams. If you can be dominant in two of the three facets, you will have a chance to win any game you’re in.

Those two points just about sum it up for the Chiefs.

It hasn’t been pretty, but they’re 9-0. The Chiefs have a lot to work on during this bye week, and they will have to step things up during the second half of the season, but Kansas City has nothing to apologize for.

Topics: Alex Smith, Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs, Tamba Hali

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  • sidibeke

    I’m worried about the pass rush, not getting much pressure on two, lesser QBs. Is it Sutton’s game-specific scheming or should I be concerned? If we don’t get to Manning, the Donkeys will eat us alive.

    • KCMikeG

      I am too but I keep hearing that Sutton is holding back and reading these QB’s that the don’t have much or any film on before he unleashes the hounds. He has also had Houston or DJ or Berry being a spy on the mobile young ones we have been playing. We went 3 quarters vs the Texans before he unleashed the hounds for 5 sacks in the 4th. We have one sack over the last two weeks but tons of pressures which have allowed our defense to pick off passes or shut down drives allow only 12 points a game. I think it will serve us well as the season progresses to have had the defense win using different approaches to stopping our opponent. That way we will be accustomed to making adjustments during the game and defeating the different offensive approaches we will face. I would still love to see a 8-10 sack bonanza though!

      • sidibeke

        I definitely agree that while we didn’t rack up the sacks against Campbell, we did get pretty good pressure. Good thing about Manning, we don’t have to worry about him taking off. :) And 2 weeks to prep.

        • KCMikeG

          People say we have been lucky having faced so many “backup” QB’s but all of them are playing well still. Keenum, Pryor & Campbell all are looking good and Teul won’t get another shot with EJ coming back. Here’s what I’m excited about. Six of our next seven games are against really bad defenses. Five of our games are against pocket passers with little to no mobility. Sutton must unleash the hounds! What a fantastic run this is by our Chiefs!

    • Tanner Cobb

      Better QBs hold on longer trying to make plays, which leads to sacks.
      The 2nd and 3rd stringers we’ve been seeing are more focused on not getting sacked or hit, which has led to more turnovers.

  • Millwright86

    We will get to manning….

  • Cody McCool

    i believe we got 17 points off turnovers unless i am mistaken.

    • sidibeke

      14 directly and then a FG after an interception. So, yes; we turned all of our turnovers into points.

  • Mark Bustamante

    Win by 1 or win by 1000. I don’t care a win is a win. I do agree that our offense needs to KICK IT UP A NOTCHE. Nice to see Bowe finally get some touches. AS11 needs to hit the open man better. Also Run DMc ran before he had a sure TD. Ouch that hurt

    • sidibeke

      I just hate to see the dropped passes, mental mistakes (penalties), off-target passes. Seems the O is just a bit out of sync.

  • Chris Tarrants

    I have a fealing that Reid has a large chunk of his play book that is being saved for Denver. You don’t coach as long as he has and only have the few plays that we have witnessed thus far. Does Alex Smith suck this bad or is part of this by design?

    • jacati

      Can’t lay all of it at Alex’s feet. McCluster and Bowe dropped some HUGE passes today. Both drops were on nice drives and AS hit both of them on the money. Instead of focusing on catching the ball they were looking for running room.

      • Danny W

        McCluster needs to be fined 5 grand for dropping that pass today. It hit him right in the chest and he may have scored. Bowes drop wasn’t as bad and I would only fine him 500.

        • jacati

          If I remember correctly one of the balls Bowe dropped was in the red zone. If he would have caught that particular ball he had a chunk of open territory between him and the end zone

          • Danny W

            I remember he having some two crucial first down drops. I can’t recall any in the red zone though.

    • KCMikeG

      I believe this to be true too. As the OL gels and can provide more time for plays to develop Reid will bring forth aspects previously unseen. Why lay all your cards on the table when you don’t have to to win. Can’t wait to see the Aces up his sleeve!

      • toperspective

        I can’t believe the Chiefs are purposely almost losing games so they can hide their “dynamic” offense. If they are, it’s a first in the history of the NFL.

        • KCMikeG

          I don’t think they are “hiding” their offense at the risk of losing games but there are forces at play here that has allowed Reid to not show his entire hand. We have only had three games where we were fighting to win at the wire. We have won all of the other games by two scores or more.
          The defense/ST’s have been so aggressive they have scored enough for us to win and the offense has responded with 80-90 yard time consuming scoring drives when needed without turning the ball over.
          The learning curve with a new system and 30 new players has impacted the launch of Reid’s WCO and the injuries at TE and OL have limited what Reid can call so yes, I believe there are aspects of his strategy that he hasn’t been able to implement – yet.
          We have so much more to enjoy as the cards are played.

    • Danny W

      I’ve never in my life ever heard of an NFL coach saving aspects for the offense until the tenth week of the season. Maybe a play or two you haven’t seen I can get behind that, but a whole new play book? What are you looking for? Deep passes all of the sudden? I’m really asking what are you expecting to be new about the offense that we haven’t seen yet? Maybe he throws Bray in there? What wouldn’t you show till week ten?

      • Chris Tarrants

        I believe he knew Denver would be the hardest team to beat and I would put money on it that they throw a few plays in that nobody has seen them run yet. I’m not talking about a whole play book but hopefully a page or two just to throw them donkeys off guard

      • Auburn78

        Holding back? No. But I do believe there are a lot of plays in Reids book that he is unwilling to call. Oline can’t hold blocks long enough for a good chunk of calls to be safely made. My personal opinion is Reid would love to open offense but until they can start getting them right in practice he won’t be using them in a game. Our run blocking had been ok….not elite but ok. Pass block makes mecringe at least 10-15 times a game

        • Danny W

          I disagree to an extent. Andy Reid has more plays than what he is calling yes. I don’t think you can put all of our offensive woe’s on the line though. Smith has time to complete some passes. I think if Andy Reid had Nick Foles he would be calling some more plays and opening his play book more yes. I don’t put all of our offensive limitations on the line. If you can’t see that Alex Smith can use some improvement or replaced with something better when we get the opportunity then your not watching the same game as me.

  • Metalcamra

    Some good parts, some bad parts. Really, all I’m thinking is I’m tired of hearing, “This isn’t going to get it done in the future.” Writers have been saying this since week 5 @Tenn – yet we continue to win.

    • stevekozak

      Amen!! I think that if the Chiefs won the Superbowl, all the media would say is “that ain’t gonna get it done next year” and “Alex Smith needs to do more.” Gotta win better, apparently……. :):):)

      • KCMikeG

        Bahahahahahahahaha!! So true!

    • KCMikeG

      Amen brother! 9-0 is getting it done better than anyone else – Period. The seachickens have struggled vs the lambs and bucs the last two weeks – where are the attacks and discounting? Wilson & Luck’s stats aren’t much better than AS11′s but you don’t hear anyone tearing them down. Some people just aren’t happy unless they are finding fault with others – usually in an attempt to hide their own insecurities.

  • KCMikeG

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY TAMBA! I thought we were supposed to be the ones giving you a gift but it looks like the Bills beat us to it ;-)
    I love the way this defense just refuses to be denied!! We have played two top 7 defenses and 5 of the top 18 and our offense has done what we have needed it to do. Wait until our offense gets to play the soft defenses of the donkeys and the dolts and the faiders who are down 21 in the first half at home. Our defense may give up a few more points vs. these high power offenses but our offense will be able to produce more points too. We are scoring 10 more points a game than we are allowing and this top 5 in every category defense is still warming up. Special Teams keep contributing because we have great coaching and well selected players. We have weathered storms, come from behind three times and watched the team become a family while struggling though injuries. It develops confidence to be in the “make the play or lose the game situations”. Our team knows they can over come whatever happens. We won by 10 points and our offense didn’t even score! Winning and great coaching has bonded this team and we are witness to the birth of a dynasty. We have not seen the best of our Chiefs yet.

  • Danny W

    Good reporting here. Solid and objective. The offense is an absolute weakness right now. The defense played against a fifth string quarterback and didn’t get to him once. That said the defense came through in the clutch and won us the game. Next week it’s high powered offense against the leagues best defense in a dog fight for football’s SOUL!!! Stole that last part from fb post Paddy Allen posted. Can’t wait till Denver.

  • jacati

    completely off the subject but is there any way to remove old comments off of disqus?

    • Danny W

      Yes just keep scrolling down.

      • jacati

        and then what?

        • Danny W

          Just scrolling down and then loading more. Once you’ve seen them on your screen they should disappear from your notification window. You may have to go back a long long ways. I did.

          • jacati

            lol…ok thanks

    • Jim Harper

      You can edit and rewrite something different, but you can’t back it all out without putting something back or the whole thing will come back

  • Stacy D. Smith

    The bye week comes at a great time for this team. Time to dial it up a notch in every phase of the game. This offense needs to get better in a hurry. Sutton needs to figure out what the problem has been with defending the run and with fewer sacks the past few weeks. We have a date with Denver, gentlemen!

    • Danny W

      You think them missing John Fox is going to be detrimental at all?

      • Stacy D. Smith

        Nope. Peyton’s like a coach on the field. If anything, not having Fox around might galvanize the team and give them an emotional lift.

        • Danny W

          I agree but hope that’s an inaccurate assessment. We go 10-0 and I might lose my mind.

  • Auburn78

    Offense was straight up inept. Reid is going to have to run more early down the stretch. Now most people are still harping on Smith not throwing the deep ball. …but damn his receivers can barely get 10 yards downfield before he has someone in his face. Chiefs Oline is flat out bad right now. Getting bullied and pushed around week in week out. If that doesn’t change then yes. … you can expect to a few losses coming. Oline is by far the biggest weakness on this team.

    • sidibeke

      I’m glad Miami was too cheap to trade for Albert. Then where would we be?

    • toperspective

      Yep, the stats say the offense is inept. Lots of blame to go around but this isn’t going to get it done in the playoffs. 3 FG’s versus the Bills is pitiful. Teams have learned that the Chiefs rarely go for big plays or throw the ball down the field so the short routes are being taken away. That’s why the offense has gotten worse over the course of the season instead of better as everyone was predicting.

  • Stan Colbert

    Another key stat Buffalo started drives avg. their 20. KC their 30.

  • Andy

    Wow, we got beat every which way but the score. Good teams do that. Our rub D missed a lot of tackles….but this has to be the best RB tandem in the NFL. We were flat footed on the deep routes not expecting a first time starter to throw. CB Smith is a hero on paper but a goat in the film room. Bottom line, this D makes the adjustments in the second half. We are tough to score on.

  • Dee Micks

    Chris Tarrants I think so too. Bowe has yet to have a breakout game, and you don’t give a receiver a big contract to be as a place holder, Bowe has dominated Champ Bailey, watch for a breakout offensive performance

  • erocks49ers

    I honestly think this game was more a preparation for Denver then anything else. Things I think will need to improve are:

    Over throws by AS. I think that can be remedied easily enough. At the beginning of the season he had bad timing with Bowe now its much better so…

    Dropped passes. Way to many 3rd down dropped passes. I don’t care if it low or high. You get payed a bundle. My coach used to say “If it hits your hands you better catch it” That goes triple if your in the NFL.

    Penaltys by the offensive line. This has gotta stop. The chains will be moving nicley then “illegal motion”. BANG 3rd and long.

    And Blocking. Gotta do something period.

  • jacati

    Let’s not forget about Marcus Cooper. That guy went flat out into beast mode.He shut down everything that came his way.You can’t really put that 59 yd score on him either. He was supposed to have safety help over the top which never materialized. I think the game coming up in Denver is going to be a straight up dog fight. The broncos this year remind me of our 2003 team. All offense and no defense. Remember how that worked out? I could be wrong but I think it’s going to be a low scoring game regardless of how ” great ” Manning is. It’s kind of funny in a way, the Chiefs are 9-0 and all people can talk about is how crappy our offense is and how we’re one dimensional. But when I look at other teams ( Broncos for one ) I see the same thing but in reverse. The teams I’m talking about are all offense and no defense yet nobody has a word to say about that. They are sooo in love with the high octane, fun to watch passing games that there is no discussion about their weaknesses at all. Our team may not be ” fun ” to watch but as a ” team ” they find ways to get it done. Manning’s going to get his but I hope we give him an extra helping of that which he didn’t ask for..Can’t wait for the next game. Bring it

  • Brian H

    I heard a quote on a sports talk show this morning saying something to the effect of “It’s time to stop asking if the Chiefs can keep up in a shoot out with the Broncos and start asking if the Broncos will be able to grind it out in a 13-21 point ballgame.”

    While I don’t have any delusions that we will hold the Donkeys to as low as 13 points (please let me be wrong), I think this quote is right on the money. It’s time to start asking if they can play our kind of football as much as can we play their type of football.

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