Chiefs Fail To Impress Against Seattle

Was Greg Robinson on the sidelines last night? Chiefs defensive linemen were dropping in pass coverage. At times, only two men were rushing during third-and-long situations. Also, I could have sworn I saw Jimmy Raye calling the plays that amounted to a grand total of three points.

After falling 14-10 to the Seattle Seahawks to end up at 0-3 this preseason, one can only conclude that the 2009 Chiefs are in bad shape as they head for St. Louis and a final meaningless preseason game next week against the Rams.

When you can't rush the quarterback with four guys, why try it with two? When you have a backup quarterback who doesn't have the time or isn't allowed to throw the ball down the field, it shows a lack of confidence from the coaching staff. And when your second-best wide receiver is playing with the third and fourth-string units, how can any fan take this team seriously?

It's been three weeks in a row now that we've seen this team crumble to losses. The impatient fans who came to Arrowhead Saturday, barely filling up half the house, were booing and displeased.

Their collective hearts sank when Matt Cassel went down with a knee injury in the first quarter. The Chiefs won't say if the injury will affect Cassel's availability next Thursday at St. Louis (I remain skeptical), but his backup, Tyler Thigpen, was not good. Certainly no one can feel comfortable that he's a fit for this offense.

With trade rumors swirling that Thigpen was on the verge of being dealt to Jacksonville, the Chiefs' thought process was to showcase the quarterback in order to pry a higher pick from the Jaguars. I can only imagine that as the Jaguars' scouts left Arrowhead, they likely phoned home and told Jacksonville's front office the bad news.

To be fair, the offensive line for the third straight game was awful. Thigpen never had a chance for any success. However, the play calling that kept him under center was a big error. He'll never be a pocket passer in the NFL. The Chiefs were running an offense that does not fit Thigpen's talents.

The running game featured long runs from Larry Johnson and Jamaal Charles, but they were few and far between. As a whole, the offense was stymied because the Chiefs could never settle on five good offensive linemen, nor convert third downs to extend drives until 2:36 remained in the fourth quarter.

Kansas City's defense was solid until the final drive of the first half. To their credit, they kept the Chiefs in the game. Brandon Flowers, who left the game with a serious shoulder injury, scored the only Kansas City touchdown by returning an interception off Seattle's Matt Hasselbeck. But the rest of KC's corners weren't strong and, once again, the safety play was poor.

However, those failures may lay at the feet of an underachieving front seven. The Chiefs could not get to the quarterback outside of a sack by first-round draft pick Tyson Jackson and a coverage sack from Andy Studebaker.

With roster cuts coming, there are some serious issues with this team. Egos need to be checked at the door and the best players need to be on the field at all times if this football team is going to be competitive before the start of the 2010 season.

Saturday's performance from top to bottom should have Chiefs fans concerned about 2009. It could get ugly fast.


Five To Remember:

1. DE Glenn Dorsey - He can't rush the passer. The Seahawks never double teamed him, but he still wasn't effective. Dorsey at defensive end just isn't working. In this defense, you can't fit a square peg in a round hole. Right now KC's starting defensive ends should be Jackson and Alex Magee. Dorsey isn't getting it done and if he's on the starting unit come opening day, opposing offenses will attack his side of the line and it's going to be ugly.

2. WR Ashley Lelie - He's the second best receiver on this football team. Devard Darling got hurt, Terrance Copper is awful and Bobby Engram has shown little. The Chiefs need to put the trio of Bowe, Lelie and Mark Bradley on the field, with Quinten Lawrence as the fourth option. Lelie is the only receiver who can stretch the field.

3. LB Tamba Hali - I'm not ready to say his conversion from defensive end to linebacker is a success just yet, but he looked good. He was probably the best defensive player for the Chiefs on the night. He was all over the field and what was impressive is that he slid down the line to make tackles. It's the best he's looked in a long time.

4. LB Jovan Belcher - If the Chiefs cut him, they'll be making a big mistake that will cost them down the road. He's one of the better linebackers and can play special teams, so he's likely a lock to make the roster. But he deserves more time with KC's starting defensive unit. He plays instinctively, and when he gets in the games, he makes plays.

5. QB Brodie Croyle - Where was he? Where will he be next week? That's the question of the night. With Thigpen struggling mightily, I didn't understand why Croyle wasn't in the game. He was the clipboard quarterback against Seattle, which was either by design, or the Chiefs are about to move him to another team. If he had replaced Cassel, the Chiefs might've have won. Stay tuned on this one. There's more news to come.

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