The Kansas City Chiefs win by double-digits on Sunday, but fail to impress against a Los Angeles Rams team missing a ton of offensive personnel.
Throughout the 2022 regular season, the Kansas City Chiefs have been the best team in the league in offensive red zone situations. Sunday afternoon would prove a very different story.
In six red zone trips, the Chiefs came away with just one touchdown. Harrison Butker had a busy day making four field goals (three of which came inside of the Rams’ 10-yard line). The offensive playcalling left a ton to be desired in goal-to-go situations. This is obviously something the Chiefs will need to clean up before a matchup with the Cincinnati Bengals next Sunday.
Defensively, the Chiefs had the day you’d expect. They surrendered just 10 points to third-year man Bryce Perkins. The Rams had one impressive touchdown drive that began late in the third quarter. Perkins converted a 3rd-and-1 and a pair of 4th-and-2 plays. He would go on to hit wide receiver Van Jefferson from 7 yards out to bring LA within 10 points. Overall, they posted fewer than 200 total yards of offense and had just 13 first downs. It was a solid performance, but one you have to take with a grain of salt given an opponent missing several key weapons.
The worst part of Sunday’s game was another couple of mistakes by Dave Toub’s special teams. In another head-scratching decision, Toub relied upon rookie receiver Skyy Moore despite two muffed punts thus far in 2022. Moore would respond by muffing a third early in the first quarter. With six minutes to go in the first half, punter Riley Dixon converted a 4th-and-5 play with a six-yard completion to tight end Jacob Harris. At this stage, Andy Reid might want to give serious consideration to moving on from Toub in the offseason. Special teams have been a liability for the Chiefs this season.
The Chiefs managed to cover, but it’s not the inspiring performance you’d expect the Chiefs to have over an inferior opponent in late November. Fortunately for them, they maintain a one-game lead over the field in the conference and a three-game lead in the AFC West.
Next Sunday, they’ll face their biggest challenge of their final six games. The Cincinnati Bengals are winners of three straight and are likely to get star receiver Ja’Marr Chase back after a month-long hiatus. Kansas City is likely to be out for blood having fallen to the Bengals in the AFC Championship game in January. They’ll need a better performance to hold the pole position in the race for the No. 1 seed.