John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Chiefs Look To Regain Focus Before San Diego

It became blatantly obvious through the course of Sunday’s 23-7 loss to the Indianapolis Colts that the Chiefs were lacking focus–something that can’t happen against a playoff bound team.

Whether it was an Alex Smith under-thrown interception in the end zone, or a Knile Davis kickoff return fumble; this wasn’t the same Kansas City Chiefs team Arrowhead was accustomed to seeing every Sunday. The players are well aware of it, also.

“I think we came out with a pretty good edge,” Donald Stephenson said following the loss to the Colts. “We just have to stay focused through the game. The turnovers, miscues here and there, a team like that will jump on it. That’s what they did today.”

Losing focus can be associated with penalties called, especially flags thrown for unsportsmanlike conduct. With a chance to get back in the game in the third quarter, the Chiefs defense forced a third down incompletion and appeared ready to get the ball back. But that would be for naught, due to a taunting  penalty from defensive tackle Dontari Poe.

“It was trash talk, and they called a penalty,” Poe said.

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

The taunting penalty resulted in 15 yards and an automatic first down. The Colts capitalized later on the drive when kicker Adam Vinatieri drilled a 30 yard field goal to make the score 23-7.

Aside from the penalties, seven of which resulted in 65 yards, the Chiefs couldn’t keep a handle on the football–an anomaly for a team that’s been consistently positive in the turnover category.

The Chiefs turned the ball over four times, including two interceptions from Smith.

“It’s not Chiefs football right there,” rookie tackle Eric Fisher said about the offensive performance. “That’s not the identity we’ve had all year.”

With the loss, and a Denver Broncos 37-13 victory over the Houston Texans, the Chiefs have no shot at taking the AFC West title. However, that doesn’t mean there is nothing to play for against a playoff-minded San Diego Chargers team.

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At 8-7, the Chargers still have an outside shot at clinching a wild-card berth with a win in the final week. Knowing this, the Chiefs will be getting San Diego’s full effort. Instead of taking the week 17 matchup lightly, the Chiefs should use this as a building block for the postseason.

We have to approach every week the same,” Fisher said. “We just need to make the most out of next week, go out there, play football like we know how to play football. We need to bounce back and come back next week.”

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Tags: Alex Smtih Donald Stephenson Eric Fisher Kansas City Chiefs Knile Davis

  • Davé

    disagree, the Chiefs should rest the starters this week. They have nothing to gain from playing other than potentially losing and going into the playoffs on a streak of losses. Or losing a key person: see Von Miller. I feel they took week 16 lightly and its not surprising they lost as a result. I saw a pretty basic fundamental football game played, which live I mistook for Alex not taking chances and regressing back to his early season performance. As a result of week 16, the Colts will believe they just need to repeat what they did to win. They will practice as if they have the key to limiting JC and Alex Smith. They will believe we are incapable of beating any team that is not below 500. We will walk in there losing two straight to end the year. Then we will smash them to bits.

    • tm1946

      If the Chiefs were capable of smashing the Colts to bits, shouldn’t we have seen some sign of it last Sunday?
      Ending the season with 2 loses seems to me to be a weakness not a strength for the team. As in one and done.

      • Davé

        I saw plenty of signs prior to that meaningless game. The chances of a team that has averaged over 40 points against much better defenses putting up just 7 are just a great as the same team purposefully playing down to get an edge in the playoffs.

    • Jarad

      Completely disagree! You dont take a game lightly when you still have a chance for the #1 seed. They got owned on Sunday! No need to search for excuses. The starters sucked, so why sit them week 17 ? Let that piss pour performance be the last performance before a playoff game!?!? I dont know any team/player that wants to sit around after getting embarrassed. Let them play, get some good football going and roll into the playoffs on a high. Not the lowest of lows for the season. Of course you can “limit” certain players, but sitting multiple starters would be a mistake in my opinion.

      • Davé

        Only a moronic fan would assume they had a chance at the 1 seed, knowing who Denver was to face the last two weeks. Any given Sunday is a fan statement, a statement for the movies. It is not a statement for Texans v Denver. I rewatched the game, as no doubt you did not and I saw an offense that was really playing much differently than they did the previous weeks. Alex took only four chances at a deep pass and none of them were plays like we have been seeing as of late. We were not in that game to win it and I could really care less. Fumbles and interceptions? Is that the norm of this team?

        Albert and Houston were held out though everyone was convinced Houston was ready to go. If we really needed to win this game why keep Houston out?

        The starters sucked? What for one game and previous to that against the Chargers, Denver, Raiders and Redskins they were awesome? Do you think we left the screen game out of it because we felt it would not work? Or is it more likely we didn’t want to show them the bread and butter of the offense.

        Embarrassed? You think they really give a shit as players today what they did on Sunday? They all came out saying this and that like they never have previously after a loss. Statements like “we got our butt kicked” or I “I think we didn’t coach very well” were abound after the loss. I don’t remember ever reading so much as far as player frustration before. To me its all gimmicky.

        You can play them Sunday and risk injury for the sake of getting a meaningless win? Do you think there is such a thing as momentum that carries you from the end of the season and into the playoffs. That is a laugh.

        Truth is this team like the screen game. We average astounding punt and kickoff return yardage. We do not fumble often, nor do we often get intercepted. We have averaged a ton of points since the bye (but mysteriously we only came up with 7 Sunday).

        I might be wrong but it sure looked like we intended to lose that game. Many people said as much in the live game thread.

        Andy Reid is a smart guy. I am just saying we are not the team that we saw on Sunday. And that is not the team that will show up in Indy.

        • Jarad

          I was at the game dude!! Youre the moronic one. Saying the Chiefs intended to lose that game or dont care if they get embarrassed on the field is tge DUMBEST thing ive ever seen on this site. The Chiefs arent even assured to play Indy again!!! Cincy loses to Balt and Indy wins vs Jax and KC plays Cincy. So get a clue! Your whole comment is plin laughable! Good luck with all that. Ha

        • Jarad

          And the success of the screen game was just as much Oakland’s play as much as it was KCs. They talked all week about the screen beating Oakland and how KC would thrive using it against them. Not every opponent is Oakland. And Indy got lots of pressure on Alex, so of course theyre not going to call plays deep or take chances. He didnt have the time that he had in previous weeks. Maybe you need to watch the game again on your TV and look at those previous games too, because i saw the game AT ARROWHEAD and you are sounding like a blinded homer that thinks there is a magical Play Well switch for the playoffs

          • Davé

            yea you sure explained why we didn’t attempt it against Indy………… I am about as far from a homer as there is which you wouldn’t know because you are noob to this site. Further more being at Arrowhead (no need to capitalize, makes you look like a douche) means you saw the game from an even worse vantage point than I. That does nothing to back up your argument actually.

  • Tristian Shelley

    Agreed Dave. Andy I think has the advantage of having seen them already. Just like Denver who would be the likely second round opponent. Defensively though where is the pass rush? Is it a matter of not being creative enough or what? Concerning to say the least but its possible in the playoffs the rush could heat up. We need that pass rush to win a game or several games if we wanna go anywhere in January

    • Davé

      I saw few blitzes even when they were needed. No question without Houston the pressure is minimal with them allowed to just hold Hali all day. Houston will be back week one of the playoffs. The pressure is coming.

  • Bosco Cletus

    The penalty on Poe was garbage. They were both talking.

    • Davé

      the penalty on Derrick Johnson was too, as was the numerous uncalled Holds against Hali.