Chiefs Head Coach Todd Haley

Dolphins Sink Chiefs; Chiefs Remain in First Place; Rally Beard Dies

Ladies and Gentlemen, Chiefs fans of the world, the Rally Beard dies today.

Sunday’s showing by the Kansas City Chiefs was fair. Matt Cassel didn’t throw any interceptions, nor did he throw any touchdowns. in fact, the only score of the game for the Chiefs came from the foot of Ryan Succop.

There have been many posts on other sites that the Chiefs were still hungover from the “emotional” victory against San Diego on Monday night. I don’t think it had anything to do with a hangover. The Chiefs looked decent. Nothing about them looked terribly off. Cassel went 20 for 39 with 253 yards. Had he added a touchdown or two it would have been a great day. Unfortunately, Miami found ways to pound the Chiefs offensive line, sacking Cassel five times and forcing him to run nine times. He was pressured all afternoon. The offensive line could not hold a block for longer than two seconds most of the time.

Jackie Battle could not get anything going on the ground, either. Battle rushed for 40 yards. Cassel rushed for 38. Do you see a problem here? Cassel is not a running quarterback. He can run when he is forced, but he’s not a Michael Vick type player, although they wear the same number. The Chiefs defense, on the other hand, could not stop the Dolphins run game and Reggie Bush. Bush had 13 carries for 92 yards and a touchdown, and added three receptions for 50 yards. What killed the Chiefs and put the momentum on Miami’s side is the two touchdowns back-to-back by Anthony Fasano. That put the Dolphins in the lead 14-3 and they stayed in the driver’s seat through the end of the game.

The Chiefs had their opportunities, however. Twice the Chiefs were inside the 10 yard line. Twice the Chiefs were stopped by Miami from getting a touchdown. Once from the five yard line, and once from the four. The Chiefs could have had six points and more confidence had Dustin Colquitt not mishandled the snap on a field goal attempt in the third quarter. The bobble and run by Colquitt set up a four play drive by Miami which ended on a pass from Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore to Brandon Marshall.

I understand why the Chiefs played the way they did. There are no excuses left to use. They looked tired, sluggish, and unprepared. Somehow I think it got to the locker room and in their minds that this game would be a cakewalk, which most of Kansas City and the rest of the NFL thought it would be as well, since the Dolphins were still in line of Sucking for Luck. The Dolphins found weaknesses in the Chiefs gameplan and exploited them. The run defense was awful, the pass protection was horrendous, and the week 9 Chiefs looked like the early season Chiefs.

The upside to this game? The Chiefs got their one ugly loss to a non-playoff contender out of their system so they can continue a run to the playoffs similar to last season. There are a lot more hurdles to jump the rest of this season, having to go to New England in two weeks, then playing Pittsburgh, Chicago, the New York Jets, and Green Bay. The Chiefs host the Denver Broncos next week, which may turn out not to be an easy game either if the Chiefs carry this gameplay to the next game. The Broncos played very well today, beating the Oakland Raiders 38-24.

The downside to this game? There are only 8 weeks left to prove why the Chiefs deserve to be in the playoffs. If the Chiefs can win against the Broncos next week, and then go at LEAST 3-2 in the following five games before the Raiders game in week 16, it will put them at 8-6, with two winnable games at the end of the season. The Chiefs should go at least 9-7, if not 10-6 and repeat as AFC West Champions. However, they have to bring the Chiefs of weeks 3-8, and not the Chiefs of weeks 1, 2, and 9.

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