Chiefs vs. Falcons: Inside The Enemy Camp
Josh D. Weiss-US PRESSWIRE
Arrowhead Addict is not a standalone Kansas City Chiefs site. We are part of a huge network of awesome team sites that cover just about every sports team out there. That network is called FanSided. Since we have experts covering all the NFL teams on a daily basis, we like to do a Q & A with the editor who covers KC’s next opponent, to get their point of view on the upcoming contest.
We call it Inside The Enemy Camp.
This week, I sat down with our Falcons editor Greg Huseth of Blogging Dirty. He’s done a great job turning BD into one of FanSided’s best sites.
Now let’s go Inside The Enemy Camp with Blogging Dirty!
Tony Gonzalez is very near and dear to the hearts of Chiefs fans. Have Atlanta fans come to embrace Gonzo during his short stay with the Falcons?
Tony Gonzalez is absolutely a fan favorite. How could a tight end as reliable, and as good a red-zone target/touchdown machine as he is not be a fan favorite? He has been with the Falcons for long enough where I think some fans have begun to forget he even used to be a Chief. I think Atlanta fans know he doesn’t stretch the field vertically anymore, but his ability to outsmart defenders has been tremendous. His route running is still elite, especially when he runs the ‘jerk route’. I think Falcons fans favorite thing is how important he has been in the development of Matt Ryan. The presence of Gonzalez has allowed Ryan a good target while they build this franchise around him. Long story short, everyone in Atlanta loves Tony G.
Who are some of the younger Falcons that KC fans may not have heard of yet but should keep an eye on Sunday afternoon?
Julio Jones. No, everyone has heard of him, but he is someone it seems media can’t keep their eyes off. Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon has gotten a good amount of national attention, and I think it is deserved; he is a very athletic defender, is very good in pass coverage, and can even get after the passer. He led the Falcons last season with tackles-for-loss. He’s going to be entering his third season, and will be taking on the defensive play-calling roles traditionally held by a team’s middle linebacker. The Falcons are asking him to be a featured part of this defense while providing leadership. Keep an eye on this guy.
From an outside perspective, looking at the Chiefs, what aspect of KC’s team worries you the most heading into this game?
Dexter McCluster. I know Dwayne Bowe is a great receiver and consistently requires more attention than the average receiver. I also know Jon Baldwin hasn’t reached full potential, but can be productive. Jamaal Charles is a weapon in the backfield. But the real matchup problem I think comes with McCluster. He wears a running back number, but splits out at wide receiver a lot. He is too fast. I am worried that when McCluster lines up in the backfield, the Falcons will match with a linebacker, then the Chiefs will split #22 out wide. That would be a huge mis-match. He’s just one of the weapons, but I’m most concerned about this one.
What would you say is Atlanta’s biggest weakness that the Chiefs might be able to exploit?
At middle linebacker the Falcons will be starting a second year player, Akeem Dent. Unfortunately, he didn’t get any starting time on defense last year except for on special teams where he was extraordinary. Dent is more athletic and a harder hitter than former MLB Curtis Lofton, but whether he can handle the role from day 1 as an NFL starter remains to be seen. There will be growing pains for sure. But he will be tested right off the bat with the Chiefs running backs in power runner Peyton Hillis and all-around fantastic/speed back Jamaal Charles. Dent will have to be pretty close to perfect from the time he takes the field. Otherwise the Falcons defense could be very subject to play-action passes or getting gashed in the run game.
If you could take one player from the Chiefs and put him on the Falcons, who would it be?
I would love to have Dwayne Bowe, or someone like Albert to help solidify our offensive line, but I’d have to go with one of the defensive players. Eric Berry has to be the guy I’d like. He is just so versatile, reads routes well, and creates interceptions. Add the fact that he is only 23, who wouldn’t love to have him on your team? Every team needs to create more turnovers, and Berry would be a great way of accomplishing that.
Bonus: Your prediction for Sunday’s game?
I think the Falcons have a difficult time scoring big in Arrowhead, but also do a good job of limiting Cassel in the passing game. Falcons 20, Chiefs 17.