This game I was a little nervous about this game for a few reasons. The Chiefs just came off a grueling overtime win against the Titans. Another factor is next week the Chiefs play a primetime game against the division-rival Chargers, so I thought they would win but I was worried they would sleepwalk through the game and just sneak out a win against a team that has kept all of their games close this year. Presently the Chiefs came out and had a very dominant game plan they were a little sloppy throughout but they had a great game plan to let the Chiefs dominate the Jaguars.
Chiefs’ offense dominates the Jaguars:
The Chiefs were able to dominate the Jaguars without a crazy complex game plan. We ran the ball efficiently which makes the Chiefs harder to defend. Many of the big passes during the game were dump-offs just to keep the drives alive and Mahomes wasn’t forcing many passes the offensive line played very well and they didn’t force anything and they played a good complete game of offense after a rough start but then they got their groove going and never looked back and were able to dominate the Jaguars.
This offensive line looked like we expected them to look before the season started they imposed their will on an incredibly talented Jaguars defensive line and linebackers. We went from last week averaging 1.3 yards a carry to a dominant 5.7 yards per carry. In pass protection, they also looked very dominant because with those spectacularly talented edge rushers they did not give up a sack, especially with your backup right tackle in the game. but with all the flack they have been receiving I think it is important to focus on how good they looked when they play well.
Our offense didn’t start the game on the right track. We had a good defensive stop and then we were driving down the field when Pacheco fumbled the ball. It was nice to see the Chiefs still stick with Pacheco and stick with the run during the game and this is what I have been asking for all year. now it’s not a 50 /50 split on passing and running but this is the amount of balance you need to be dominant because we ran the ball 27 times and threw the ball 35 times that is what we need to see consistently to make this offense even harder to defend.
Being this multiple at the receiver position is a tremendous asset for this team. Juju has looked great so far this year but he will most likely be out next week after a scary hit from Cisco, we have MVS as a great deep threat who has been a little hit-or-miss game to game. You have a great new weapon in Tony who had his first touchdown in his career and looked great and the sky is the limit for him in this offense. We will hopefully be getting hardman back next week but Watson played well when his number was called. Noah Grey had a great game and as always Kelce was unguardable this let our receivers dominate the Jaguars.
The defensive line for the Chiefs dominated the Jaguars this week. Chris Jones needs to enter the defensive player of the year conversation. He dominated the Jaguars’ offensive line and Jones has a 24 percent pass rush win rate which is tied with Donald. The whole offensive protection scheme starts with trying to figure out a way to block Jones. The rest of the defensive line flows around him. I talked about this a couple of weeks ago but Jones’s run defense has also improved which helped slow down Etienne who has been a very dominant force for the Jaguars in the last few games, and to stifle him as the defensive line did is incredibly impressive.
The Chiefs’ young corners look amazing so far this year and having McDuffie back healthy is just what this team needed. He has looked so good early on in his young career, he allowed the first catch of his career this week but he had great coverage the ball had perfect placement and that beat his coverage. If McDuffie continues to grow and develop you can see the potential he has to be a true lockdown corner. One of the best compliments to him is we don’t hear much about him on the field because he is so often in perfect position and he and Sneed could be an incredible corner duo.
Sneed had admittedly a tough game but because of his contract, I think Kirk has been overlooked a lot. Kirk is one of the best slot receivers in the NFL, but to me, it seemed like the Chiefs’ defense looked like they were dedicated to stopping the run and trusted their corners. However, Sneed as always was amazing in the blitzing aspect of his game. He has the ability to change matchups for the defensive line and help create miscommunication to help flush Lawrence into the arms of Jones, Saunders, and Dunlap because of the pressure created by the corner blitz.
Special Teams Troubles:
This is yet another week where some of the Chiefs’ returners make questionable decisions and had a big coverage issue to start the game. We started the game in a bit of a pickle we won the toss and accepted the ball. You are playing a big underdog who you know will probably try to steal a position at some point in the game and the absolute unawareness of the onside kick to start the game was a bit upsetting but the defense bailed them out and got the offense the ball shortly after they recovered the ball.
There was a kick return where they shorted the kick to keep it out of the hands of our primary returners. our tight end Jody Fortson caught the kick and instead of fair catching it or taking a knee he returned it which he never does he tried to force some extra yards after contact and that led to the Jaguars punching the ball out. There are just these lapses of judgment where you should just fair catch it or take a knee. Relatively speaking ten yards is nothing to this offense so I think generally we could just fair catch it half the time we would be alright.
Towards the end of the game, the Jaguars punted the ball away and the ball was bouncing at about the five and Tony decided he should run up and just try and return the ball. This is one of those things where I just want coach Toub to tell these players to let the ball go into the endzone and just play offense and not force anything. We’ve had issues all year in the return game and I wonder if Toub is telling them you can break off any punt for a touchdown. We don’t have Devin Hester back there with how good our offense is we can just take a touchback and work from there and not force anything.
Kadarius Toney has looked absolutely incredible in his limited sample size with the Chiefs. He was able to dominate the Jaguars’ corners and make a couple of really great plays. His first touchdown he was out left and no one followed him across the formation and he was able to skip into the endzone. and he made an amazing acrobatic catch up the right sideline. He has had such a great start to his time here I’m trying to stay relaxed and he might have a few down games but with how well he is playing it is very difficult to try and temper my expectations. If he can semi-consistently keep up this pace that would add an incredible weapon to this already dynamic offense.
Khalen Saunders continues to dominate alongside Chris Jones. Saunders has improved so much in his time here. A man his size should not be able to move as fast as he does but he is always creating disruption in the pocket and has developed his pass-rush plan. He is also one of the main keys to the Chiefs’ much-improved rush defense. He had a big sack during this game and had a great tackle for loss he is becoming such a great complementary piece to Jones and to use his athleticism he has even been used for a short drop in coverage and he did not look out of place he an amazing chess piece for this defense.
Leo Chenal might have had his breakout performance during this game he looked great and borderline dominant when he was running downhill and attacking he had a great effort and pursuit sack and on occasion, he was able to dominate the Jaguars’ offensive line when he was attacking downhill. He also did well in defending the run game. I think in the coming weeks the Chiefs will use him more and more in pass-rush situations because they can utilize how aggressive he is and utilize his great pursuit speed.
With the Bills dropping their game to the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday the Chiefs are now in the sole position of first place in the AFC. This week they are traveling out to LA to play the division rival Chargers this could be a primetime breakout game for our pass rush to impact the game with how banged up the Chargers’ offensive line is. The back end and linebackers of the Chiefs’ defense have their hands full because of the skill position players. The Chiefs need to keep the pedal down on the division and the Bills. But the Chiefs now have control of the conference and have a great chance to extend the division lead but have a tough devision rivalry game ahead of them.