By overthrowing the bosses, the bills meet little resistance

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Before Patrick Mahomes even considered the Kansas City Chiefs home ground as a starting quarterback three years ago, ...


KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Before Patrick Mahomes even considered the Kansas City Chiefs home ground as a starting quarterback three years ago, he saw their future. Ignoring the organization’s portfolio of playoff fiascos, its half-century of landmine marching, he assessed the infrastructure of the leaders – their inventive coaching staff, their resourceful front office and their core of young talent – and predicted a dynasty.

Under Mahomes, the Chiefs have won the last three division titles, played the last three AFC championship games and played in the last two Super Bowls. Whether or not one of these streaks continues isn’t so much about Mahomes as it is about what happens on the pitch after he leaves.

The Chiefs threaten to squander both the best offense in Mahomes’ tenure and the best season of his superlative career, as they have forgotten how to cover, how to tackle and how to play defense.

The latest proof of that season trend came on Sunday night, in a 38-20 loss to the Buffalo Bills that set the Chiefs’ unofficial franchise record for most opposing receivers left open. One after another, these Buffalo receivers rushed down the field, past the confused linebackers and defensive backs, to wait for the clothesline passes from winning quarterback Josh Allen. 35 yards, 41, 53, 61.

The entirety of a damp, weird night at Arrowhead Stadium – the game was delayed 62 minutes by inclement weather, and no, the Chiefs didn’t use that time to set up defensive tries – Buffalo’s supremacy claimed in a very heavy AFC and established a few horrible truths, none of which were encouraging to the Chiefs. One of them is particularly troubling: The Chiefs aren’t a bad team, but neither are they right now.

They’re 2-3, last in a division led by a Chargers team two games ahead of Kansas City – three, really, considering Los Angeles entered Arrowhead Stadium two weeks ago. and won, claiming a first face to face. tiebreaker. The Chiefs have the same record as noted powers Minnesota, Atlanta and Philadelphia, which scored 35 points last week against Kansas City and have never punted. The only reason the Chiefs escaped with a win was because, believe it, the Philadelphia defense played worse than theirs.

The Bills (4-1) are infinitely better than the Eagles, and five games in the season, they’re as better than everyone else. No team has scored more points than Buffalo or allowed fewer, and beyond, according to Pro Football Reference, only five teams since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970 had edged their opponents by at least 108 points in the first five weeks. The Bills have padded that differential in a game that while it can’t retroactively award them the conference title they failed to capture here in january, still handed Kansas City their worst home loss since Andy Reid took over before the 2013 season.

“There is a certain urgency that you have to have when playing for the Kansas City Chiefs knowing that everyone in this league, they want what we have,” said safety Tyrann Mathieu, adding: “The teams are chasing it. this glory, I mean, every week.

Some teams are better equipped to chase that glory than others, and in Cleveland, Baltimore, Los Angeles and Buffalo, the Chiefs’ season-opening schedule featured four. All approached Kansas City with demonstrable aggression, knowing they had to score to outlast Mahomes and confident they could exploit a vulnerable defense that entered Week 5 with the most points and the most yards per. drive in the league.

Building a 24-13 halftime lead, Buffalo is averaging exactly one point per offensive play. The Bills amassed 289 yards on those 24 plays – in other words, they got a first down every time they broke the ball. Allen averaged 31.3 yards per halftime completion.

Through. Completion.

Even when the Chiefs’ defense stabilized in the third quarter, forcing three consecutive punts, it didn’t last. A brutal personal foul on Frank Clark canceled an interception that would have given Kansas City, led by 31-20, the ball over its 41-yard line with about 12 minutes to go. Instead, the Bills turned the second chance into a decisive 85-yard touchdown, extended by Allen’s L’Jarius Sneed on a third and four. The journey took almost eight minutes.

As with other elite quarterbacks, Mahomes’ greatest strength is his ability to minimize worries and shortcomings. But the Chiefs’ imbalance puts him in an untenable position. Prior to Sunday, Kansas City had scored the second-most points in the league despite having fewer possessions, and what Mahomes is now loaded with – more or less exceeding those standards – is the jab issued by Tom Brady’s wife, Gisele Bündchen, after New England lost the Super Bowl to the Giants in February 2012. Furious at several Patriots crashes, she chuckled that Brady couldn’t throw and catch at the same time.

Mahomes can’t play offense and defense for Kansas City. Let’s rephrase it: he probably could, but Reid won’t let him. Mahomes threw two interceptions – one hit Tyreek Hill in the hands and was sent back by Micah Hyde for a touchdown – to bring his season tally to six, and appeared frustrated with receivers who didn’t adjust their routes. But on the bosses’ list of problems, it ranks somewhere between the fictitious and the old no. A precedent is in its favor. But not so much for a defense which, despite minimal roster turnover, seemed slow and hesitant, unsure of where to go and what to do and – in the case, on several occasions, of safety Daniel Sorensen – who to cover.

“It’s a single game,” said Mathieu. “Cover your guy, tackle, upside down. And when you don’t do these things, it’s embarrassing.

In this inaugural 17-game season, the Chiefs have an extra week to evolve and resolve, but there’s no reason for them to procrastinate. The first milestone is the trade deadline of November 2, five days before Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay visit Arrowhead, and it’s quite likely that GM Brett Veach will explore deals to improve both depth. and the quality of his team, and assert his place in the playoffs.

And on this: As baffled as they are, it’s incomprehensible to imagine a playoffs without the Chiefs, especially given the expanded seven-team field this season. Also, Mahomes. But reaching the playoffs isn’t what matters or defines them.

Mahomes initiated a paradigm shift in Kansas City, where success is measured in championships, plural. The Chiefs served five decades of futility to win after the 2019 season, but the league’s worst defense obscures its vision of a red and gold empire.

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Newsrust - US Top News: By overthrowing the bosses, the bills meet little resistance
By overthrowing the bosses, the bills meet little resistance
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