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The Meltdown Lounge>FO and Coaching Staff Have Derailed This Season
rabblerouser 07:46 AM 10-13-2021
https://zonecoverage.com/2021/chiefs...chiefs-season/

Well-written article. I was going to post that it was "a good read", but it won't make you feel any better :

Originally Posted by :
By*Justin Wiggins*- October 12, 2021

The Kansas City Chiefs’ dream of a dynasty is quickly falling apart.

On Sunday night in Arrowhead, the defending AFC Champions were embarrassed by the visiting Buffalo Bills, falling 38-20 and officially closing any gap the Chiefs may have had between themselves and what many believe to be their biggest threat in the AFC this season.

Their biggest weakness is evident right now, with the defense off to a horrific start. It’s more than just bad. Frankly, it’s historic. Through five weeks, the defense is surrendering 7.1 yards per play, which is the highest-ever number allowed by an NFL team, according to Pro Football Reference.

But wait, it gets better. The best offense of the past 20 years is undoubtedly the 2007 New England Patriots, who averaged 3.3 points per drive — the exact same amount of points per drive the Chiefs’ defense is allowing through five weeks. Simply put, this years’ defense is turning opposing offenses into the greatest offense our generation has ever seen every week.

Will they maintain this historic pace of ineptitude? Unlikely, but that’s not to say it will markedly improve, not with the results Chiefs fans have endured so far.


However, even with Pro Bowlers across the defense, the blame for this disastrous production does not lie solely with the players. The complete collapse on the defensive side falls squarely on the shoulders of the front office and coaching staff. The countless off-season miscues, paired with a puzzling deployment of players on defense, are the biggest reasons the Chiefs might find themselves wasting a season of prime*Patrick Mahomes.

Over the past two summers, the front office, led by general manager Brett Veach, has doomed this year’s defense by compounding poor draft and free agency decisions. The Mahomes-led offense is so good that they’ve been able to overcome these shortcomings the past couple of seasons. However, constant mistakes from the front office have finally reached a level their otherworldly abilities can no longer sustain.

Let’s take it back two years. Following their Super Bowl win in 2019, the Chiefs found themselves in a cap-crunched world. They weren’t alone; many other teams in the NFL during a tumultuous off-season with numerous unknowns surrounding COVID-19 and its impact on the 2020 season.

Frank Clark*was brought in via trade the summer before and was set to have his cap hit jump from $6.5 million to $19.3 million. Linebacker*Anthony*Hitchens’*contract was also ready to spike from just $5.2 million to $12.7 million. Both players would need to step up and produce on a more consistent basis than they did last year. Neither player performed at the level the Chiefs needed, with Clark tallying just six sacks and Hitchens collecting a measly 78 tackles while continuing to be a liability in coverage.

The draft that summer didn’t help either. The Chiefs selected*Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who has become a replacement-level running back, with their first-round pick when taking a defensive player would have been more prudent. The lack of talent on one side of the ball was evident, yet the Chiefs were still somehow able to overcome those obstacles and returned to the Super Bowl for the second year in a row.

While the defense may not have been the driving factor in their Super Bowl loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the front office knew they still needed to generate more pressure up front while also finding depth at cornerback. Veach and head coach*Andy Reid*expressed a need to get younger and more athletic on defense in the off-season.

In the 2021 draft, the Chiefs selected of LB*Nick Bolton*out of the University of Missouri in the second round. The one knock on Bolton in college was his athleticism — not a great start. The Chiefs were in desperate need of more speed in the middle of their defense to pair with*Willie Gay*Jr., and their top selection in the draft was used on an Anthony Hitchens clone. So much for the faster part of getting “younger and faster.” Bolton has been okay at times in the run game but has been a major liability when asked to range from side to side, a trait they desperately needed.

The only other pick in the draft allocated towards defense was in the fourth round, and defensive end*Joshua Kaindoh*was seen more as a project than an instant producer. The Chiefs left yet another draft with few resources spent on impact players for the defense.

Not only did they fail to address the pass rush or the secondary depth in the draft, the free-agency period was no better. Proven cornerback*Bashaud Breeland*signed with the Minnesota Vikings; in fact, the Chiefs essentially swapped cornerbacks with Minnesota when later in the summer they acquired former first-rounder*Mike Hughes*for pennies on the dollar. Breeland had been a contributing factor for Steve Spagnuoulo’s defense over the past couple seasons, while Hughes found himself quickly out of favor in Minnesota due to his injury history and poor performance. The results have been predictable, with Hughes finding himself abused by opposing quarterbacks all season.

However, Veach did find himself a Pro Bowl-caliber defensive tackle in free agency.*Jarran Reed*was released by the Seattle Seahawks and later signed with the Chiefs on a one-year prove-it deal. Last year, Reed proved disruptive up the middle, leading Seattle with 6.5 sacks and earning his first Pro Bowl selection. Alas, Reed has been a disaster in Kansas City this season, totaling just six tackles and only two QB hurries. Yet another free-agent whiff from Veach and the front office.

The string of misses by the front office has greatly affected the defense this season. But to make matters worse, the coaching staff’s deployment of its resources has been puzzling. While*Dan Sorensen*has been perhaps the worst safety in football so far this season, it’s not his fault that the coaching staff has repeatedly asked the aging vet to cover athletic tight ends and wide receivers. It’s even more perplexing when young, athletic options like*Juan Thornhill*remain on the bench.

Thornhill was drafted in the second round in 2019 as a perfect complement to*Tyrann Mathieu. However, the coaches have been repeatedly trying to fit a square peg into a round hole by placing Sorensen at the deep safety position, and it showed time and time again on national television Sunday. Sorensen was at fault for two touchdowns allowed and still played 100% of the defensive snaps.

On top of the secondary struggling to cover opposing teams, the defensive front remains a mystery when one considers the amount of money that’s been allocated to the front seven. In training camp, Spagnuolo announced All-Pro defensive tackle*Chris Jones*would be sliding out to defensive end this season. While few doubted Jones’ ability to remain a disruptive force on the outside, many questioned whether it made sense to move a player from his most dominant position. The early results of the 2021 campaign are starting to suggest it was a bad idea. Jones has been okay on the outside, but his true value remains as a dominate interior rusher.

GMs and coaches are human, and they are allowed to make mistakes. For most of the past couple seasons, Mahomes and the offense have been great enough to overshadow them. But the front office miscues and downright confusing coaching decisions are piling up, one on top of the other.

The truth is, the margin for error in Kansas City is no longer thin. It’s non-existent.

JUSTIN WIGGINS

Justin Wiggins covers the Kansas City Chiefs for Zone Coverage.


[Reply]
chiefzilla1501 11:37 AM 10-13-2021
Jesus, non existent margin of error? What a bunch of chicken little shit.

We need more accountability from the front office and coaches. But the sky isn't falling.

We have an elite head coach and qb who have to figure some things out in terms of cover 2. Extremely confident they will.

A ton of our defensive problems are mental. Spags needs to figure it out. If he can't, find someone who can. And as veach has done many years before, find the gaps and band aid them. If our offense turns around, our defense only needs to be good enough.

Our overreaction to this thing is embarrassing. I get if we're disappointed but this "woe is me" we are doomed forever shit is so over the top. We have plenty of margin of error. We are just in a Murphys law stage right now where everything that can go wrong, has.
[Reply]
chiefzilla1501 11:37 AM 10-13-2021
Jesus, non existent margin of error? What a bunch of chicken little shit.

We need more accountability from the front office and coaches. But the sky isn't falling.

We have an elite head coach and qb who have to figure some things out in terms of cover 2. Extremely confident they will.

A ton of our defensive problems are mental. Spags needs to figure it out. If he can't, find someone who can. And as veach has done many years before, find the gaps and band aid them. If our offense turns around, our defense only needs to be good enough.

Our overreaction to this thing is embarrassing. I get if we're disappointed but this "woe is me" we are doomed forever shit is so over the top. We have plenty of margin of error. We are just in a Murphys law stage right now where everything that can go wrong, has.
[Reply]
KCChiefsFan88 11:50 AM 10-13-2021
Things are going so well for Breeland in Minnesota... it's too bad the Chiefs didn't keep him. :-)

Link: https://thevikingage.com/2021/10/11/...a-vikings-cut/

Originally Posted by :
Heading into the 2021 season, the Vikings were expecting that the addition of Breeland would help improve a secondary that was one of the NFL’s worst in 2020.

Unfortunately, the veteran cornerback has seen his performance take a turn in the wrong direction in his first five games with Minnesota. Breeland’s play out on the field this season has been very unimpressive, to say the least.

Who knows at this point, but so far, the Bashaud Breeland experiment in Minnesota is certainly going terribly through the first five weeks of the season.

[Reply]
suzzer99 11:56 AM 10-13-2021
Here's the thing about using the CEH pick for a stud defender. These are the non-safety (we had to be set with Thornhill and Mathieu at the time) defenders chosen between CEH and Willie Gay Jr.:

DE - Yetur Akkub Gross-Matos: 14 solo tackles and 3 sacks in his career so far. PFF grade 55-58.

DT - Ross Blacklock: stats are hard to measure on DTs, but his PFF grade for 2020 was 30.2. Looks like he's doing better so far in 2021.

DE - Marlon Davidson: 7 tackles, 1 sack in career. PFF grade around 60.

DE - Darrell Taylor: zero production in 2020, but is kicking ass in 2021 - 4 sacks, PFF grade 71.5

CB - Jaylon Johnson: PFF grade of 55 last year, looking better this year at 74.

CB - Trevon Diggs: there's your diamond, 9 INTs in career so far, but lol PFF only has him at 62/67.

DT - Raekwon Davis: PFF 71 last year but 28 so far this year

OLB - Josh Uche: PFF 78/61

For comparison, Derek Nnadi had a grade of 75 last year, Ward had 65.

They probably didn't have an idea about Jones moving to DE yet. So they would probably have felt set at DT. Also if they liked Gay Jr. they might not go for LB. So it seems like DE and CB would be most likely.

Taylor was injured so that's a one year wait. The other two DEs have been kinda meh but would still be an upgrade to what we have now.

Trevon Diggs definitely looks like the guy we should have gone for.
[Reply]
arrwheader 11:58 AM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by rabblerouser:
I think it's effort related, too. Like, guys just are flopping around out there, not much passion, just...I don't know. That attitude the defense had in 2019 is gone.

It's just gone.
and I have a hard time wrapping my mind around this because why would that happen? You have a team capable of going far again and your job is to play football so why would you not continue to give your best effort? Makes no sense to me because unless these guys all secretly want to just lose or retire this year then it doesn't make sense they would just lose the passion.

If it was i hate the team im on lol then you still play your best to catch on with another team.

idk that narrative just doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
[Reply]
HC_Chief 12:40 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by suzzer99:
CB - Trevon Diggs: there's your diamond, 9 INTs in career so far, but lol PFF only has him at 62/67.

Trevon Diggs definitely looks like the guy we should have gone for.
Yeah, that kid is special. Watching him play you can tell he is a natural talent at his position. Dude has been absolutely dominant.
[Reply]
Straight, No Chaser 01:03 PM 10-13-2021
Still waiting for the "reunion" of Jarran Reed & Frank Clark.
[Reply]
tredadda 02:05 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by Coochie liquor:
I think Reed would be much better with CJ back inside next to him.
He absolutely would. The CJ at DE experiment needs to come to an end.
[Reply]
jettio 02:11 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by Straight, No Chaser:
Still waiting for the "reunion" of Jarran Reed & Frank Clark.
I have to watch closer, but seems like Reed holds his ground okay, but does not make much effort to tackle the ballcarrier if nearby.
[Reply]
rabblerouser 04:19 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by arrwheader:
and I have a hard time wrapping my mind around this because why would that happen? You have a team capable of going far again and your job is to play football so why would you not continue to give your best effort? Makes no sense to me because unless these guys all secretly want to just lose or retire this year then it doesn't make sense they would just lose the passion.

If it was i hate the team im on lol then you still play your best to catch on with another team.

idk that narrative just doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
Then what?
[Reply]
kccrow 04:49 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by suzzer99:
Here's the thing about using the CEH pick for a stud defender. These are the non-safety (we had to be set with Thornhill and Mathieu at the time) defenders chosen between CEH and Willie Gay Jr.:

DE - Yetur Akkub Gross-Matos: 14 solo tackles and 3 sacks in his career so far. PFF grade 55-58.

DT - Ross Blacklock: stats are hard to measure on DTs, but his PFF grade for 2020 was 30.2. Looks like he's doing better so far in 2021.

DE - Marlon Davidson: 7 tackles, 1 sack in career. PFF grade around 60.

DE - Darrell Taylor: zero production in 2020, but is kicking ass in 2021 - 4 sacks, PFF grade 71.5

CB - Jaylon Johnson: PFF grade of 55 last year, looking better this year at 74.

CB - Trevon Diggs: there's your diamond, 9 INTs in career so far, but lol PFF only has him at 62/67.

DT - Raekwon Davis: PFF 71 last year but 28 so far this year

OLB - Josh Uche: PFF 78/61

For comparison, Derek Nnadi had a grade of 75 last year, Ward had 65.

They probably didn't have an idea about Jones moving to DE yet. So they would probably have felt set at DT. Also if they liked Gay Jr. they might not go for LB. So it seems like DE and CB would be most likely.

Taylor was injured so that's a one year wait. The other two DEs have been kinda meh but would still be an upgrade to what we have now.

Trevon Diggs definitely looks like the guy we should have gone for.
Good notes for sure. Missing McKinney, Dugger, Winfield, and Delpit at S, most of which are looking like solid picks but we can agree the Chiefs didn't appear to have a major need at S and especially not in round 1.

The player they probably should have grabbed there was a WR. Tee Higgins, Michael Pittman Jr, Chase Claypool, take your pick. The writing was on the wall with Sammy and any of those was the absolute perfect fit as an X replacement. Higgins was particularly dubbed a 1st round prospect and would look pretty good here.
[Reply]
kcclone 05:00 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by comochiefsfan:
Sadly accurate article.

Brett Veach is running this franchise into the ground right in front of our eyes.

Veach is just a front man for Reid.

When they say Veach loved Mahomes early on, I’d bet the real story is Reid loved him and made it known and Veach jumped on it.

They pushed that narrative to give Veach some credibility.

Veach’s first 3 drafts were train wrecks, but I do like last year’s draft.
[Reply]
Chiefspants 05:12 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by DJ's left nut:
Bolton probably is a Hitchens clone. Maybe with a little more downhill aggression.

The issue I have is that it's not really the insult the guy thinks it is. Hitchens is a starting NFL linebacker. He may be past his sell by date at this point, but Hitchens has had a 7 year NFL career as a starting interior backer and has been typically solid (with a pretty rough year there in the mix when he first got to KC).

Bolton would be fortunate to have the kind of career Hitchens has had. And the Chiefs, if they can get Hitchens production on a minimum contract for 3 seasons after this one, will have used a 2nd rounder extremely well.
Hitchens was key in our defenses turnaround in the back half of 2019. Not an argument to hold onto him now, but an argument in favor of the utility in having someone like Bolton back there.
[Reply]
MahomesMagic 05:31 PM 10-13-2021
Our biggest cap hits are Jones, Matthieu and Clark.

Jones has been moved out of position where he no longer dominates and was injured for Buffalo when we needed him to pressure Allen.

Clark has been out and injured and a shell of the player we thought we signed.

Matthieu has looked pedestrian since being on the Covid list and is inexplicably also not being used as a weapon all over the field and near the line of scrimmage. Against Buffalo last year he was constantly at the line either blitzing or dropping into coverage or doubling someone. This year he is kept out of this role by Spags.

Spags and his Sorenson obsession at safety cost us against Buffalo. Allen has looked bad in 2.5 games against us. The one half he explodes two out of 3 big plays were Sorenson. The other was showing man and bringing no pressure.
[Reply]
TEX 05:43 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by MahomesMagic:
Our biggest cap hits are Jones, Matthieu and Clark.

Jones has been moved out of position where he no longer dominates and was injured for Buffalo when we needed him to pressure Allen.

Clark has been out and injured and a shell of the player we thought we signed.

Matthieu has looked pedestrian since being on the Covid list and is inexplicably also not being used as a weapon all over the field and near the line of scrimmage. Against Buffalo last year he was constantly at the line either blitzing or dropping into coverage or doubling someone. This year he is kept out of this role by Spags.

Spags and his Sorenson obsession at safety cost us against Buffalo. Allen has looked bad in 2.5 games against us. The one half he explodes two out of 3 big plays were Sorenson. The other was showing man and bringing no pressure.
The bringing no pressure part was the worst of it. Do that and many things improve.
[Reply]
arrwheader 06:14 PM 10-13-2021
Originally Posted by rabblerouser:
Then what?
Idk, probably has some to do with it. Maybe being so shitty itself has got them blaming others and not focused on being better. That reflects coaching though.

Sent from my Pixel 3a using Tapatalk
[Reply]
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