The Four Weaknesses of the Kansas City Chiefs

If the Seahawks can stop this guy, it'll be smooth sailing Sunday afternoon.

Finally, the Seahawks are back at home. And on top of that, playing an overrated Chiefs team that haven’t fared well on the road, with losses to Houston (not very good), Indianapolis, Oakland (below average) and Denver (borderline terrible). The Seahawks will have their hands full all afternoon with the Chiefs’ potent rushing attack. Red Bryant is out for the season, and since his injury, the Seahawks haven’t found a replacement as effective against the run.

Before we get into details, let’s add a bit of context; who the Chiefs have played this year:

  • WINS: San Diego Chargers (by 7 @ home), Cleveland Browns (by 2 away), San Francisco (by 21 lol @ home), Jacksonville Jaguars (by 22 @ home), Buffalo Bills (by 3 @ home), Arizona Cardinals (by 18 @ home)
  • LOSSES: Indianapolis Colts (by 10 away), Houston Texans (by 4 away), Oakland Raiders (by 3 away), Denver Broncos (by 20 away)

So let’s look at what us Seahawks nuts have to look forward to this Sunday afternoon:

  • Poor pass rush.Even though the Chiefs have 20.0 sacks on the season, good for 15th in the league, their adjusted sack rate (defensive snaps vs. number of sacks) is 4.8%, 29th in the league. Suffice it to say, their defense is on the field a lot and they’re not a very good pass rush team.
  • Stuffed rank. Football Outsiders has a metric called “Stuffed Rank” – how well a team stops rushers for no gain or a loss. The Chiefs rank 31st. Lynch could have a nice game. He might not blow the doors off, but consistent 4-5 yard carries should be enough to open up the offense.
  • An uneven rush defense. The Chiefs’ rush defense is the best in the league defending runs off offensive right end (to the outside of the right tackle), allowing only 2.03 adjusted line yards to opposing running backs. Very impressive. But none at no other ‘directions’ are the Chiefs ranked higher than 22nd in the league. Take a look for yourself.
  • Overrated rush offense? OK, I’m probably reaching. But all hope isn’t lost. The Chiefs rushing offense may average the most yards in the NFL, but Football Outsiders puts their rushing offense at 10th in the NFL in DVOA (remember, the rank adjusts for opponent’s defensive strength). They’ve had some monster games, but they’ve also played six rush defenses near the bottom of the league in DVOA. And they’ve got six wins. Weird.

Pile onto the fact that Brandon Flowers, Chiefs cornerback, is listed as ‘doubtful’ as of Friday, the Seahawks offense could have their way with the Chiefs defense. Not having Williams will hurt (he’s listed as questionnable, but what player with that designation HAS played this year for the Seahawks?), but the Seahawks should beat an overrated Chiefs team at home.

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About Nick

I'm a guy that loves the Seahawks far and away more than any other team in any other sport. I live in Seattle, I'm married to the perfect woman, I work in marketing and I'm nearly into my 30s. Scary. Find me on Twitter talking #seahawks @nandron.
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