Chiefs Blow it Big Time
An historic loss and I watched the whole thing live courtesy of Sky Sports. Happy Days. I almost wish I had had the flu and only had to read about it the next day!
But no – like the live-streaming of a train wreck – you just have to watch even when you know the outcome is going to be a disaster.
UGLY: What was that call?
Marcus Mariota fumbled the football on the play, which Justin Houston recovered, but it was ruled a stoppage of forward progress, which cannot be challenged. This was the first of two questionable forward progress calls on the evening.
The Titans kicked a field goal to get on the board."Anyway that aside, I have to say that these rules now a days are getting very complicated and they are starting to pull at the fabric of the game. The forward progress call where Mariota fumbled was egregious and atrocious. The quarterback was standing still - the impact of the hit jarred the football loose and the referee decided to call his forward progress stopped - even though he was standing still looking downfield - negating an obvious fumble. The definition of a sack fumble has now been called into question. Calls like this should never happen and yet are becoming routine and familiar. These calls are absurd and way overcomplicated. So I wanted to open a discussion and see what people think should be done to stop this lunacy of calls. Instead of a rant I thought it may be constructive to have a discussion about solutions to a problem rather than being pissed that we follow the biggest choke artists in sports. Hence this post.”
“The odd thing was – at half time with the score 21-3 and I was thinking that if we can get a touchdown on the next possession maybe we can rest some of the starters for next week’s encounter with the Steelers. (Talk about some rose-coloured lenses).
Then the wheels not only came off but went rolling off indifferent directions. The running the ball plan was abandoned (it wasn’t working anyway). The injuries piled up (two were extremely critical – Travis Kelce and Chris Jones). The defense began to show their true form (the Greeks have a word for it “pathos”). Finally, Alex Smith (in what will surely be his last game in red) began to look confused and shell-shocked, as if “surely this can’t happen again!” Oh, yes it can and it did, Alex.
At the end of the day the truth is the Chiefs lost because they did not make enough good plays on either offence or defence. This self-evident analysis is only useful going forward if it forms the basis for progress.
Let’s start with the offence: where, at least, there were some bright sparks.
Alex Smith has been a great servant to the franchise, but next year he is just trade bait. Patrick Mahomes will be the QB and the Chiefs cannot afford to have Alex as a back-up. He goes for either high draft picks or a quality player which fills a need. We have the rushing leader in Kareem Hunt. That should be enough! No, it is not. In he Titans game, he was generally ineffective, whilst a much leas talented back got the glory for the Titans by pounding the Chiefs D-line. We could use a real pounder as compliment to Hunt. At Tight end we have Travis Kelce and when he got injured the game was lost. Demetrius Harris and Orson Charles are poor, and very poor respectively substitutes. The much talked-about Chiefs three tight end offence was shown to be nonsense. We need another proven tight end via the draft or free agency. The O-line has been poor all season. Some good games have only masked the inadequacies. Upgrades are required across the board. You simply cannot have a rookie QB with a poor O-line and a one-dimensional running game. The core of the problem is the receiving corps. Alex has been hampered all season by a lack of quality receivers to throw to. Mahomes will need proven NFL receivers and some top draft picks to come in and challenge for starting spots. The Chiefs have been making do with Tyreek Hill – who is not really a wide-receiver at all! Getting in some real big-bodied wide-outs who can catch the ball is the number one priority!
Moving on to Special Teams. What a disappointment. In the most critical game of the season they made one play – a fumble recovery on a punt. Result: no points. The Butt Kicker missed a chip shot. Shame to blame him but it comes with the job. He makes it and we probably win. Shame because he is very good and will have the job next season. Dustin Colquitt will be a free agent and may go. I can see a low draft pick being used on the next Chiefs career punter.
The Chiefs defense is overall graded at about D or C- at best. D-line needs help and players who could help are not on the roster. LB’s are D at best. Help! Help! The secondary is solid but needs another quality cornerback and a safety (even if Eric Berry returns and is in his old form.)
There are no mysteries here. You can call it a rebuilding year or a revamping year or a treading water exercise, call it what you will. Problem is almost every other team will be looking for the same things!
Still, until these issues are addressed and solved the next play-off win is a mirage in the distance.