The defense made a statement on Sunday. After two weeks it's evident they'll get the job done over the next 14 games. Kansas City's defense is better, faster and stronger than it's been in years, and creates turnovers in a way that's reminiscent of the 1990's.
The offense is another story. It was better today, but those improvements were negated by the man calling the plays – offensive coordinator Mike Solari.
Somebody needs to remind him that when it's third down and you only need a yard or two to get a first down, keep the ball in the hands of your Pro Bowl running back – especially when in the red zone.
For the second consecutive game, Solari tried to outthink the opposing defense. Instead of succeeding in that endeavor, all he did was keep the ball out of the hands of his best player.
You either have a feel for the flow of a game or you don't. If Solari has such a talent, it wasn't shown during the last two weeks in Houston and Chicago. His offense had four trips inside the Bears' 30-yard line in the second half and came away with only three points.
I think this football team is going to start winning games – it's only a matter of time. And no one team is going to run away with the division. But if the Chiefs are going to be a player in the AFC West race, the play calling must improve.
Five To Remember
1. QB Brodie Croyle - That's the player we saw in mini-camp and in River Falls. Against the Bears Croyle displayed his rocket arm and soft touch. After almost getting decapitated on his first snap, he did a solid job. His long pass to wide receiver Jeff Webb was something I've seen him do many times in practice. He's come along way since being demoted, and he's going to be the starter sometime this season. I like Damon Huard, but Croyle has the arm that can stretch defenses and he's far more mobile.
2. LBs Napoleon Harris, Derrick Johnson and Donnie Edwards - Kansas City's "Three Amigos" were spectacular on Sunday - 20 tackles, three sacks and two interceptions. When the Chiefs get defensive end Jared Allen back next week for the Vikings, games like this one will be the norm for their linebacker corps. The Chiefs have really upgraded from a year ago. Harris, Johnson and Edwards kept their team in the game today.
3. FB Boomer Grigsby - For the second straight game, he sat on the bench when he could have contributed in a big way against the Bears. On special teams, he might have been able to stop Devon Hester at least once. On offense, he could have been the difference for this team in short yardage situations. I think part of the reason the Chiefs didn't run on two third-and-short plays today is because they think current fullback Kris Wilson isn't the lead blocker this offense needs.
4. WR Jeff Webb - After his dropped pass a week ago in Houston, Webb was solid against the Bears. He dropped a short pass that would have extended a drive in the first half, but I can overlook that. His 34-yard catch in the fourth quarter is the type of play this offense desperately needs. If Webb can continue to play like he did today, the offense will be even better when Eddie Kennison returns.
5. DC Gunther Cunningham - Major props to KC's defensive coordinator. This was the type of game that shows he finally has all the tools to field a successful defense. Kansas City's defenders were more in sync with each other this week, and did a good job bottling up the run while forcing turnovers. Most importantly, Cunningham made a change in the secondary when he inserted veteran safety Greg Wesley for a struggling Bernard Pollard. That took guts, especially when you consider that Wesley had to take a back seat to the younger Pollard this preseason. Cunningham put the best players on the field, regardless of age.
Edwards Must Take Control of Offense
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