The Kansas City Chiefs didn’t look like the offensive powerhouse we’re accustomed to in Week 1 against the Detroit Lions.
What did we take away from this game?
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1. Skill Position Players On Offense Are Going To Be a Problem
Without Patrick Mahomes’s favorite target on the field in Week 1, Travis Kelce, we knew it would potentially be a noticeable issue for the Chiefs. We’ve seen Mahomes make magic with lackluster options on offense before, but he’s never had to deal with a receiving core as thin as the one that took the field against the Detroit Lions. It was evident that wide receiver Kadarius Toney wasn’t at 100%, but you would have thought that would play a role in his route running, not his ability to catch the football. What’s most concerning here for the Chiefs is that Kelce could be showing cracks in his armor. He’s getting up there in age and has already defied logic by staying very durable for the entirety of his career. Even if Kelce returns for Week 2 action against Jacksonville, what’s to say he stays healthy for the entire season? If the Chiefs have some highs and lows with their receiving core, the top seed in the AFC could be in question, which may prohibit them from returning to the Super Bowl.
2. The Chiefs Will Be More Dominant On Defense Than We Thought
The Chiefs looked sound on defense against the Lions and without Chris Jones. Kansas City was particularly strong on third downs, holding the Lions to just five-for-15. Defensive end George Karlaftis made strides and was a solid pass-rush threat, which is positive when you factor in that the Chiefs are banking on some of their young talent contributing. If you add Jones back into the fold, you have an excellent run-stopper and someone that can make opposing quarterback’s lives much more difficult.
3. Patrick Mahomes Is More Vulnerable
As exciting and dominant as Mahomes has been for the Kansas City Chiefs, he can’t do everything himself, as much as he’s tried to prove it in previous seasons. It’s not as though Mahomes can throw the ball to himself and catch it (We’re looking at you butterfingers, Toney). Mahomes made some great throws in the team’s opener against the Lions, and you can see how frustrated he was with the drops and protection he received. We know Mahomes is prone to scramble and make big plays with his arms and legs, but will he feel like he has to do too much on offense now? Mahomes holds himself to the highest standard, and rightfully so, but will doing too much hurt the team? Mahomes will still put up godly numbers, but it’s right to wonder if the pieces around him will allow him to reach the promised lands again. Then again, there were also ups and downs during last year’s regular season.
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