Bounce Back Year Needed for Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs limped to a 2-14 record last season which made up one of the worst years in franchise history. The offense averaged just 13 points per game, fewest in the NFL, and the defense wasn’t much better as they allowed 26 points against per game. Andy Reid was hired in the offseason to hopefully turn things around and with the acquisition of Alex Smith the expectations may be to do so sooner rather than later.
The Chiefs should have an improved offense this season with Smith under center compared to Matt Cassel last season. Jamaal Charles has been one of the more stable offensive players for the Chiefs over the years, and with the third round pick of Knile Davis the running back out of Arkansas the Chiefs should have a deadly two headed attack of Charles and Davis. While what exactly Reid does on offense is unknown, Dwayne Bowe should be expected to have a bounce back year after catching just 59 balls for 801 yards in 2012. The bottom line for the Chiefs however is that the offense will go as Smith goes and sports gamblers should pay close attention to how he adjusts to playing for a new team.
Defense was a weak unit for the Chiefs last year evident by the 319 yards against average they held as a team. The Chiefs will be relying on linebacker Derrick Johnson even more this season after he racked up 125 tackles last season with two sacks. Sports books won’t be anticipating the Chiefs defense to improve much however as they did little to add new players through free agency and waited until late in the draft to take defensive players, a possible mistake for a team who will struggle on the defensive end and will be relying on returning players to step-up and improve individually.
The kick returning duties will likely fall to Shaun Daughn a backup running back who averaged 23 yards per return in his rookie 2012 season. While Daughn doesn’t seem like a player who will excite fans on a weekly basis, he is simply a solid return man who puts them in good position time after time. Ryan Succop had possibly his best season kicking for the Chiefs last year making 82% of his tries with a long of 52 yards. Succop will have the kicking duties once again as he tries to establish himself as one of the more reliable kickers in the NFL.
The Chiefs are still in rebuilding mode even though they traded for a new quarterback and signed a high profile head coach. Defense will drag this team down from being a smart sports bet pick in most games and the offense will only be tough if Smith is able to come in and control the offense as he did in his short time starting for the San Francisco 49ers early last season.
2012 Prediction: 3-13, 4th AFC West