Five things the KC Chiefs must do to beat the Philadelphia Eagles

Heading into the Week 11 clash against the Philadelphia Eagles, what must the KC Chiefs do in order to climb to 8-2?

Nov 5, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver A.J. Brown (11)
Nov 5, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver A.J. Brown (11) / Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
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5. Take away A.J. Brown

Perhaps the best overall player on the Philadelphia Eagles is wide receiver A.J. Brown. He recently set the NFL for most consecutive games with at least 125 receiving yards at six. He's a threat to beat defenses at all three levels and is also a nightmare at contested catches.

There is very little doubt that Browns is Jalen Hurts' number one option. Through Philadelphia's first nine games, he is their most-targeted pass-catcher by 30 targets. He's also their leading receiver by almost 500 yards.

The Eagles are also extremely dependent on their top three receivers. A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, and Dallas Goedert account for 83% of their team's receiving yards. For context, the Chiefs' top seven receivers account for 83.9% of their receiving yards. As flawed as Kansas City's receivers are, their passing is undoubtedly more balanced than Philadelphia's.

The problem for the Eagles is that Dallas Goedert is not playing in this game. After Brown and Smith, the next leading receiver for them is D'Andre Swift at 166 yards and their next leading wide receiver or tight end is Olamide Zaccheaus at just 87 yards in nine games. Yes, they have Julio Jones, but he's not a significant needle-mover at this point in his career.

Though Devonta Smith is healthy for this game, his 1.51 yards/route run is by far the lowest of his career. He was at 2.00 last year and 1.73 in his rookie season, per PFF ($). For reference, Rashee Rice (2.28) and Justin Watson (1.61) are both ahead of him. Even though Smith is a great player overall, he's not playing as well as he did last year.

I say all of this to explain that limiting A.J. Brown is critically important for the Chiefs' defense. If Brown isn't producing, the Eagles offense will likely struggle to throw the football against one of the best defenses in the NFL. The Chiefs already have one of the best secondaries in the NFL and it's a positive sign for them that they may only have one serious weapon to worry about.

The Chiefs have fared very well against top-tier receivers this season. Against Justin Jefferson in Week 5 (before he left with an injury in the fourth quarter), K.C. limited him to three catches on six targets for 28 yards. Versus Tyreek Hill in Week 9, he only managed to record eight catches and 62 yards. Kansas City is capable of limiting elite wide receivers and that trend needs to continue tonight.

In my opinion, Steve Spagnuolo should double A.J. Brown and go man-coverage across the board. They have the secondary to make that work. Without Goedert, Brown and DeVonta Smith are Philadelphia's only hopes in the passing game. If both of them can be contained or made into a non-factor, the Eagles will not move the ball through the air and turn them one-dimensional, which is never a good thing when playing the Chiefs.

If A.J. Brown can be successfully limited in this game, do not expect the Chiefs to allow a lot of points in this game. If they allow him to go off, tonight could get sketchy for the Chiefs.

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