Chiefs Need Defensive Shift

Though the signing of veteran defensive tackle, Kevin Vickerson, may not indicate a big shift in the Chiefs defensive fortunes, it might provide Kansas City the opportunity to match up their overall talent by switching to a 4-3 defensive front.

When the Kansas City Chiefs lost Linebacker, Derrick Johnson and Defensive End, Mike Devito, for the remainder of the 2014 season on Sunday, they’re certainly going to have to make some adjustments defensively moving forward.

However, the fact that Defensive Coordinator, Bob Sutton, has shown zero initiative in changing anything defensively since he took the job a year ago, my faith isn’t very strong he’ll do anything but use the band-aid approach that’s failed so miserably during his tenure in Kansas City.

Still, if he wants to save his job, he better quit acting like he wants to keep it and change the course of the ship he’s been chosen to captain. There are rumblings defensive players don’t understand why Sutton doesn’t make adjustments within games. If something is not working, it needs to be changed but the defensive coordinator has been reluctant to do so.

With two starters lost, and the addition of Defensive Tackle, Michael Vickerson, Sutton should shift his scheme to a 4-3 front that would fit his current personnel.

With Dontari Poe and Vickerson in the middle, they could effectively slow down the run. Further, with both defenders occupying two men each on opposing offensive lines, the likes of Allen Bailey, Justin Houston, Tamba Hali or even Dee Ford, could rotate some at ends.

I’ve never been a fan of the Chiefs 3-4 alignment because for the most part, since Romeo Crennel installed it in Kansas City, it’s failed to work. Sure they’ve had flashes of brilliance but for the most part this defense is still playing as ineffective as ever.

Regardless how they looked in the past that’s irrelevant now because all that matters is hat they’ll look like in the future. In facing a season saving must win game against the Denver Broncos on Sunday, the Chiefs defense has to secure a victory.

The Broncos will be a heavy favorite, and even though most people think this game will be over in the first quarter, that doesn’t mean they can’t be beat at home. With the Chiefs offense stuck in anemic mode, the defense is going to have to carry the weight for future immediate wins..

Eventually the offense will come around once the offensive line can give Quarterback, Alex Smith, enough time to use the weapons he has at his disposal. That is of course, if Head Coach Andy Reid, will use them in designing this weeks game plan.

I really hate to sound so negative but the bad taste of the Titans game is still lingering and Reid’s handling of the offense is beyond troublesome.

That’s why it’s critical that Reid and Sutton make some brash changes this week on defense in preparation for the mighty Broncos. The Chiefs have to believe, despite the Titans loss, they can defeat their AFC West rival. The Colts managed to slow down Peyton Manning and company when they made second half adjustments.

The Chiefs though can’t walk into Denver thinking the same old schemes will work. They have to junk the current system and replace it with a more diversified and dynamic defensive front that can yield success.

By starting with the defensive switch, the Chiefs can change their scheme just enough that it closes the pocket around Manning, which could yield to turnovers. Manning isn’t without history of turning the ball over against the Chiefs. The problem in the past, the Chiefs offense was never able to capitalize off them enough to make the point spread big enough to finish any of those contests against Manning.

The only chance this team has in changing its 2014 fortunes is to start thinking outside the box. There is more than enough talent on both sides of the ball, despite what we saw on Sunday, to have a chance to win this game in the fourth quarter for the boys in red.

To me, it all starts with Sutton. He has to change his mindset and stop forcing systems onto players that simply don’t fit the scheme he’s comfortable using over and over again with zero success. He simply doesn’t have the personnel to play the style of defense he knows how to coach best.

If he has the guts to change things up, the defense can help the Chiefs win this football game. Because, I really believe KC’s offense is going to play a whole lot better on Sunday.

Time will tell if I’m correct in my assumption about Sutton. But one thing is perfectly clear, if the Chiefs don’t change their overall approach defensively, it won’t matter what the offense does on Sunday afternoon in Denver.

Should this trend continue then Sutton may ultimately be the coaching staff scapegoat at seasons end if this team fails to make the post season.




WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
Do you have any faith in Bob Sutton?


For all the news, notes and quotes on the Chiefs, visit WarpaintIllustrated.com


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WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
Do you have any faith in Bob Sutton?
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