4 overreactions to the Chiefs' pitiful loss to the Broncos in Week 8

The streak has ended. But, like The Undertaker, will the Kansas City Chiefs rise from this loss? Or did the Denver Broncos break their proverbial backs?
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2. The linebacker corps went from a position of strength to weakness

The Chiefs linebacking group, under the leadership of Nick Bolton, had a case for being the best and deepest in football not long ago. Drue Tranquill looked like a free-agent steal. Willie Gay flew around the field. Even Leo Chenal, who has plenty of room for improvement, was a positive contributor.

All those pieces put together did not show up well against the Denver Broncos. Injuries had a big part to play in it, with Gay and Tranquill leaving the field at different times with injuries. When neither were on the field, that left Jack Cochrane, Cam Jones, and Chenal as the only three linebackers—a scary moment.

Bolton is known for his run defense and sure tackling in any situation. The Chiefs defense sorely missed that, as they allowed 153 yards on the ground. That is the most Kansas City has surrendered in a regular-season game since an overtime win against the Tennessee Titans on November 6, 2022. That was the first game with Bolton on IR.

The linebackers looked good in individual moments. Chenal had a career day with 11 combined tackles and a sack. Tranquill matched that production as well while wearing the green dot. Gay was flying around the field and made some good tackles by shooting the right gaps. But those were individual moments. The unit played poorly as a whole and sorely missed Bolton.

It is not their top trade priority, but if Bolton is possibly out until the playoffs, the Chiefs need to evaluate adding another thumping linebacker. Watching this same unit against the Miami Dolphins and Philadelphia Eagles—both top-five rushing teams—could get ugly very quickly.