Chiefs First Quarter Report: What We’ve Learned
The Kansas City Chiefs have finished the first quarter of the NFL season with a 3-1 record and they stand atop the AFC West standings.
Let’s take a look at what we have learned so far:
1 The defense is for real
The Kansas City Chiefs defense is definitely for real. What Romeo Crennel is doing isn’t smoke and mirrors. The Chiefs are benefiting from improved play on the defensive line, at linebacker and in the secondary.
The Chiefs are only near the bottom of the league in passing yards allowed because they are among the best in the league in stopping the run. Teams are being forced to throw because they can’t run. They are getting yards but they aren’t scoring. The Chiefs are allowing just over 14 points a game. Thus far they have given up 14, 14, 10 and 19 points and one touchdown was in garbage time against the Chiefs’ backups. Take that away and KC is only giving up 12.5 points a game with it’s starters on the field. That is playoff caliber defense.
2 The Chiefs have the best rookie class in the league
Prove me wrong. 7 draft picks, 1 on IR, 5 making significant contributions and 1 is a solid backup at guard and that is only because he is sitting behind Brian Waters and Ryan Lilja. Asamoah could probably start on other teams.
3 Tony Moeaki and Kendrick Lewis were the steals of the draft
Lewis isn’t starting at FS but he is playing about 60% of the snaps. He is only yielding snaps to McGraw because McGraw brings an important veteran presence to the young secondary.
Moeaki is leading the team in receiving. Enough said.
4 Todd Haley is the early favorite for Coach of the Year
If the Chiefs finish 10-6 and make the playoffs I can’t think of anyone else who would deserve it more. He has 7 games to go.
5 Dexter McCluster needs to get the ball more but must improve as a receiver
McCluster is electric but he isn’t performing very well as a receiver. Most of his plays were dump off screens with him coming out of the backfield. I’m not sure if he isn’t getting open down field or if Cassel just isn’t getting him the ball but the Chiefs need more of a down field threat. Bowe and Chambers aren’t burning anyone and McCluster is the next best option.
6 It is time for the Chiefs to see what they have in Jeremy Horne
Horne is playing mostly on special teams but the Chiefs need to get him in the game and see if he can get open down field. Even if it is only a few times a game, the Chiefs are too weak at WR not to give Horne a couple of shots. Horne showed speed and the ability to get separation in the preseason. For the Chiefs to continue to be able to run the ball they need to stretch the field vertically. Right now I don’t think teams are worried about Bowe or Chambers beating them deep. It is time to see what Horne has got.
7 Matt Cassel needs to play better
With the lack of depth the Chiefs are showing at the WR position, Matt Cassel needs to do better. He can’t afford to continue to miss open receivers. His margin for error is small. It may not be fair but he has to step up and get his completion percentage above 59%.
8 Tamba Hali and Brandon Flowers are going to the Pro Bowl
If they continue their current level of play there is no question Hali and Flowers will be going to the Pro Bowl.
Alright Addicts. Those are some of the things I’ve learned about the Chiefs through the first quarter of the season. What have you learned?