The 4-3 Kansas City Chiefs should beat the visiting 1-7 New York Jets on Sunday. The Chiefs’ #1 ranked passing defense should swarm all over the Jets’ 32nd ranked passing offense. Kansas City should take care of business against the Jets who have won a total of four road games in the last two years, while the Chiefs own one of the best home field advantages in the NFL courtesy of the world-record breaking fans of Arrowhead stadium. Momentum? The Chiefs have won four of their last five while the Jets have tanked seven straight games in a row. Yes, the Chiefs should beat the Jets on Sunday.
All of those… disadvantages for the Jets are reason enough to say, this is a dangerous game for the Chiefs.
What? You think I’m confused? That perhaps my Halloween punch got spiked by some wascally wabid Waider fan (of course you know all Waider fans are wascally, wight)?
No. There are just several anxious aspects about this youthful collection of Chiefs going up against a Rex Ryan-led team that can play so poorly one week but not so poorly the next. While the matchups look good against the Jets at first glance, digging deeper reveals other matchups that should give anyone pause.
Does Jets head coach Rex Ryan know Chiefs DC Bob Sutton better or… does Sutton know Ryan better? Chiefs defensive coordinator Bob Sutton spent four seasons, immediately before he came to the Chiefs, working on Ryan’s defensive coaching staff.
Jets OG Willie Colon says he sees the likenesses between the Jets defense and Bob Sutton’s defense in Kansas City,
"“…the Chiefs defense is similar to the Jets defense because KC defensive coordinator Bob Sutton spent many years as a defensive coach with the Jets. Facing a similar defense in practice every day… can be beneficial to the offense. It’s a lot like Rex’s defense: the pressure, the overload, the rush ends and good linebackers….”"
All ideas, I’m sure, that the Chiefs current ILB Josh Mauga can confirm, having been plucked from the Jets’ pumpkin patch of linebackers from 2009 to 2013. For the Jets offense, facing the Chiefs defense, may be a lot like an extended practice session for the them. Since the part of this game that many Chiefs fans have been taking for granted is the Chiefs defense vs. the Jets offense, the notion that this game would be a lot like an extended “practice” for the Jets, should make Chiefs fans as unhappy as Allen Iverson.
If there’s one strength the Jets do have this year, it’s their run defense. They currently rank fifth in the NFL in rushing yards given up per game, allowing only 85.4 yards per. If the Jets can contain — or shut down — the Chiefs rushing attack, then the outcome of this contest will fall squarely upon QB Alex Smith’s shoulders (and his shoulder, the important one, was listed on the Chiefs Injury Report this week).
I tell you, this is a dangerous game.
As a player you’re always trying to measure your opponent and if any of the banged-up Chiefs are thinking, “Oh good, this is a bad team we’re playing and it’ll give me a chance to rest a bit” then this game will be in jeopardy from the outset.
The Jets have lost one game this year by less than a field goal and three other games by a mere touchdown.
Fans must also be aware by now that Michael Vick is going to be the Jets’ starting QB on Sunday. Vick came to the Jets in the offseason with the idea that he’d be there to tutor the young Geno Smith who’s only in his second season. However, many in the Jets community feel that Vick has always been the better option.
As a writer who made a push for the Chiefs to draft Geno Smith in the first-round last year I want to announce: crow has officially been served. Now, I recognize that Geno Smith is not even an average QB, and he may be on the market this coming offseason. Not that I want the Chiefs to sign him, because I don’t.
If head coach Rex Ryan is shown the door when this season comes to a close, as many suspect, the new coach will most certainly want a new QB, his own hand-picked field general to groom. Thus, Geno would be history in NYC. Since the Jets will likely be drafting high, there’s a good possibility they’ll be players in the chase for one of the top three QBs: Marcus Mariota (Oregon), Jameis Winston (Florida State) or Connor Cook (Michigan State), along with Tampa Bay. Especially since the Raiders have their QB of the future in place and Jacksonville appears to remain committed to Blake Bortles.
However, you can be fairly sure that Rex Ryan does not want to go out with a whimper… nor go out period. You can also be certain Rex plans to win on Sunday at Arrowhead. Remember, it was only 12 years and two days ago that Herman Edwards, then-head coach of the Jets, who said, “You PLAY to WIN the GAME!” Yes, Rex is preparing his team to play to win the game on Sunday.
Another adage is repeated with such frequency that it could be called a rule: “On any given Sunday.”
If the young Chiefs haven’t learned that by now, then they will learn it the hard way tomorrow.
The Jets WR tandem of Percy Harvin and Eric Decker is formidable and with Michael Vick slinging the rock, speed could be a factor in this game. Jace Amaro is a rising star at TE and RB Chris Ivory is not an easy out, averaging 4.9 yards per carry during his four-year career. And no one should ever take Jets RB Chris Johnson lightly.
A dangerous game, I tell you.
The Chiefs will have to play a “contain” defense and attempt to corral Vick instead of going for the kill-shot-sack, because he knows how to make people miss and use his legs to move the chains. Yes, Vicks’ legs and penchant to run, is what usually gets him hurt or in trouble. However, Vick being older and wiser and this being his first game back as a starter following his bad game in relief off the bench means he may well have a good game coming up.
Now, that does not bode well for the Chiefs.
Andy Reid is well aware of Michael Vick’s speed and versatility too. “He’s going to be 50 years old and still be the fastest guy on the field and the best arm on the field,” said Reid earlier this week.
Who should know what Vick is capable of better than Andy Reid, who brought him to Philadelphia following his incarceration for dog fighting? Vick remains the all-time yardage leader in rushing yards for QBs. So, Reid knows his flare for being footloose and fancy free with the football in his hands. That can also be Vick’s weakness but when he reins in his need to run and allows his arm to do the talking, he’s excellent. In the past three seasons, Vick has a half dozen 300-yard games and two, 400-yard games, showing that he can be as formidable as any quarterback in the history of the game. In spots.
In other words, Michael Vick is dangerous, which makes this a dangerous game for the Chiefs.
On the other hand, when Vick implodes, he’s more dangerous to his own team than anyone else. He has 86 INTs and 95 fumbles in 136 games and so with Vick it’s always beast or famine, often resulting in an extended vacation on the IR.
Although Vick committed three turnovers in a sub role last week against the Buffalo Bills, he’s also aware of his limitations. From an interview with Newsday this week, he said of his performance in that game, “I got greedy. I was trying to play like 24-year-old Mike Vick. You have to play with some type of control.”
Since Vick is such an up-and-down player in terms of his performances then you have to hope, if you’re a Chiefs fan, that this Sunday is not an “up” week.
The New York Times doesn’t share my concern for the Chiefs facing the Jets. They point out that, “The Jets have allowed the most points in the N.F.L., 228. They have the worst turnover ratio, minus-15.”
That equates to the Jets allowing 28.5 points per game. If you’re wondering where the Chiefs rank in total points scored per game, they’re ranked #11 at 25.1 points per. Turnover ratio? The Chiefs are currently ranked #23 in the league at -2.
A loss could be ruinous to the Chiefs’ playoff hopes. If the Chiefs go to 4-4 because they overlooked the Jets, then 9-7 would probably be the best season-ending record that could be hoped for. It’s that time of year when every game seems like it counts double. In a sense, it does because if they’re not putting a “W” in the win column then another “L” is going up in the loss column. A win here and the Chiefs can possibly get to 6-3 next weekend against to Bills but a loss drops them right back to mediocre with little hope of digging out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves.
What will it be, Addict fans? Do you think this is a dangerous game? Or is your confidence overflowing?