The Chiefs failed to learn much from their previous losses to the Steelers

CARSON, CA - SEPTEMBER 24: Head coach Andy Reid of the Kansas City Chiefs is seen before the game against the Los Angeles Chargers at the StubHub Center on September 24, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
CARSON, CA - SEPTEMBER 24: Head coach Andy Reid of the Kansas City Chiefs is seen before the game against the Los Angeles Chargers at the StubHub Center on September 24, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images) /

Usually, these are about what we learned from Chiefs games, but this is more what the Chiefs didn’t learn.

The Kansas City Chiefs hosted the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday afternoon in what many feel was a rematch for the playoff game in January earlier this year. With the Chiefs on a roll and looking almost unbeatable and the Steelers struggling to get much of anything going, it seemed that K.C. came into this game ready to right the wrongs from last January.

Unfortunately, Chiefs head coach Andy Reid completely abandoned the run, the offensive line struggled, quarterback Alex Smith missed multiple deep wide open targets, and the defense couldn’t find a way to stop Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell. The only thing really different about it was that the Chiefs didn’t lose to the Steelers kicker this time.

There were moments that I really felt like they were playing a joke on me and just replaying the 2016 playoff game until I would see Chiefs rookie running back Kareem Hunt get the ball. Which wasn’t all that many times considering he only had nine carries on the day. Just like the playoff game, Andy Reid gave up on the run game and tried to win with the passing game.

If you remember the playoff game against the Steelers, the Chiefs running backs were pretty banged up. Running back Spencer Ware was playing with a rib injury but was still in there. Reid gave up way too early on the run game in both of these unlike last week against Houston when the run game was getting shut down, he kept at it.

More from Arrowhead Addict

The Steelers defense seemed like they knew every play that was coming at them before the snap of the ball. Every screen play that Reid tried to be cute with got blown up the second the ball was snapped. The offensive line struggled all game to stop the Steelers pass rush.

This wasn’t the first time that Smith has been under a great deal of pressure though. Just about every game this season he has seen pressure most of the game but he found ways to escape and make some plays. While we saw a little of that from Smith, it came too late toward the end of the game.

Smith missed numerous wide open receivers deep down the field throughout the first three quarters including one in the end zone. Second-year receiver Demarcus Robinson was wide open twice which could have both been touchdowns. I’m not blaming this whole game on Smith, as I think that late in the game he was who kept us in it, but if you don’t think that Smith had something significant to do with it then you are wearing blinders when it comes to him.

The defense had a pretty similar day although they gave up more to the passing game this time around. The secondary seemed to be playing off their receivers and giving them plenty of room to make a play instead of up on their guy and trying to make a play on the ball themselves. It was the definition of a bend don’t break scheme.

The defense also failed to give Bell much of a problem running the ball. Bell ended the day with 32 carries and 179 yards. Just about every time Bell got the ball it seemed like it was a first down. Last year we blamed a lot of that on not having star middle linebacker Derrick Johnson, but that can’t be said for this game.

The Chiefs defense was playing with six defensive backs and not having that thumper middle linebacker showed how much it can hurt this team. I think this was a good case for why they are trying to give new addition linebacker Reggie Ragland more playing time.

The defense came out and looked a lot better in the second half and making plays in key situations but it wasn’t enough to hold the Steelers offense under twenty points once again. While the defense did their share to earn this loss, I still think that not being able to put up 20 points is more of an issue.

While every team has bad games throughout the season and in no way was I expecting the Chiefs to go 16-0, it was a very disappointing loss. To see the team lose the exact same way that they did in the playoffs as if they didn’t learn anything from that loss was really troubling. I’m not sure why the team has gone back to old ways especially in playcalling twice now this season as they played the 2016 conservative way against the Los Angeles Chargers in week 3 as well.

All that we can hope for is that they take this game to heart and really hand it to the Oakland Raiders this Thursday night. It seems that when the Chiefs lose a game as miserable as this one they tend to come back next game looking like a whole different team. This is the perfect time to beat the now 2-4 Raiders who desperately need a win here to keep their season alive.