Film Study: How the Chiefs can get a crucial road win over Broncos
By Grant Tuttle
Offensive Public Enemy #1:
Phillip Lindsay, RB
It seems odd that I would place a running back as the number one public enemy for the Chiefs defense, but it is completely warranted. With great speed, Lindsay has the ability to not only go for big gains on the ground, but also through the air. With either Eric Murray or Anthony Hitchens in coverage, this could be the Chiefs toughest matchup on Monday night.
Offensive Public Enemy #2:
Emmanuel Sanders, WR
Sanders has made several big plays already this season. Despite his injury problems of the past and aging, he looks very tough to defend. As I predicted immediately after Keenum’s signing, he is the favorite wide receiver target. I think that this has to do with his similarity to Viking’s receiver Stefon Diggs. Steven Nelson, Orlando Scandrick and Kendall Fuller will have a tough task keeping Sanders in check.
Offensive Public Enemy #3:
Demaryius Thomas, WR
This is likely Thomas’s last year in Denver. With Courtland Sutton as the up-and-coming wide receiver for the Broncos, Thomas knows he will be looking for a new job soon. This makes him incredibly dangerous. Thomas has great size which makes it difficult for any cornerback, especially in the red zone.
Defensive Public Enemy:
Von Miller, Bradley Chubb, and Derek Wolfe are a pass-rushing unit that can create nightmares for offensive linemen and quarterbacks alike. Between these three, sacks can come at any time in any manner. Miller has been a force for years and Mitchell Schwartz and Eric Fisher will get plenty of work in this game.
Offensive Scheming Player #1:
Travis Kelce, TE
With the Broncos struggle against tight ends, Travis Kelce is destined to have a big game. With Sammy Watkins and Tyreek Hill on the outside, the middle of the field should be wide open for Kelce. Both Kelce and Demetrius Harris should see opportunities against the linebackers and safeties of the enemy.
Offensive Scheming Player #2:
Tyreek Hill, WR
Hill has put up incredible numbers against Denver. The Chiefs will likely attack the middle of the field, but the moment safeties begin to creep up to defend Travis Kelce, Hill will be open deep down the sidelines. It would not at all be surprising to see multiple successful bubble screens going his way because of how soft the Broncos play in coverage against speedy receivers.
Offensive Scheming Player #3:
Kareem Hunt, RB
Kareem Hunt has been pretty quiet thus far, but when you have the best passing offense in football, your running back should be quiet. However, this could be the first time we see a big game from Hunt in 2018. If the Broncos play soft off of the line and worry too much about Kelce, Hunt may see a lot of space up the middle.
Defensive Player that needs to step up:
For the second straight week: ANY AND ALL SAFETIES
We did not sign Eric Reid. We have not traded for Earl Thomas. We have Eric Murray and Ron Parker patrolling the middle of the field and I’ve got to say, it makes me uncomfortable. The safeties and linebackers have been the weakest link of this abysmal defense. However, the linebackers have shown some improvement in various parts of the game. The safeties have not. They have simply looked awful. Eric Murray needs to be serviceable to avoid Sabby Piscetelli status. We are getting awfully close.
This game is incredibly important to how the rest of this season goes for both teams. However, it has bigger meaning for the Broncos who will either lose two straight and fall two games behind Kansas City or will tie at the top of the AFC West with them. After watching the tape, this is a terrible matchup for Denver. The offense is not great which may lead to more stops from the Chiefs defense and the defense is not good enough to slow down Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs. This game may end closer than many are predicting, but I believe it is just as likely that the Kansas City comes away with their biggest victory margin of the season.