The first 9 minutes of Friday night's preseason opener was everything the Chiefs would like their season to be.
They were efficient on both sides of the ball and on special teams while the regulars played. The game then devolved into the typical exhibition game and the Chiefs, after taking an early 10-point lead, lost 17-13 to the Saints to begin the Andy Reid era.
New starting quarterback Alex Smith led a touchdown drive on his first try. The Chiefs used a hurry-up offense on a 14-play, 80-yard drive that was methodical if not spectacular.
Andy Reid Era Begins Strong Despite Loss from The Mothership
The entire Chiefs coaching staff was dressed in red Chiefs hats, pullovers, dark slacks and black shoes; the look screamed unity and for the most part, that's exactly how his team played, despite falling to the New Orleans Saints 17-13 on Friday night.
While the Saints won the coin toss, they elected to defer to the second half and kicked off.
Alex Smithmade the Saints and their fans pay, making his one and only drive of the game count.
Alarm Bells Briefly Ring For Chiefs' Eric Fisher from KC Star
As it turned out, Chiefs coach Andy Reid said Fisher's injury was minor, a sore left thumb. But Fisher spent quite a bit of time in the trainer's room with ice on the thumb after the 17-13 loss to the Saints.
"I just banged up my thumb a little bit," Fisher said. "My hands have been banged up all camp. We'll find out more ... but I'm feeling all right."
Fisher couldn't pinpoint exactly when he got hurt.
Well, this is encouraging.
We're all smart enough to know how much this actually means. NFL teams have practices more important than their first preseason game. Offenses are vanilla. Defenses rarely blitz. These games are important for league revenue and guys fighting for their jobs and, really, not much else. We will all forget soon enough that the Chiefs lost 17-13 to the Saints on Friday night in the Superdome.
But, well, despite the score, this is still encouraging.
Should Chiefs fans start to think about securing their Super Bowl tickets?
Probably best to hold off for now. But it was an encouraging start. The starters played just one possession on each side of the ball and Andy Reid had to like what he saw. The possession to start the game was a thing of beauty. Alex Smith was seven for eight passing with the one incompletion coming when he unloaded the ball to avoid a sack.
Chiefs Preseason Game Perspectives from The Mothership
Remember your last job interview? How about your first day on the actual job?
What was it like? Were you nervous? Uncertain? Confident?
In a sense, those very emotions put you in good company with many of the Kansas City Chiefs players, who will take the field at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome tonight to face the New Orleans Saints.
Of the players on the Chiefs roster for tonight's game, each offers unique perspective, from veterans to rookies.
Chiefs' Special Teams Look Sharp from KC Star
McCluster might have erred in fielding the punt by the Saints' Thomas Morstead at his own 3 instead of letting it go into the end zone for a touchback.
But McCluster cut to his right and followed his blocking down the sidelines for 55 yards, which last season would have been the Chiefs' longest return - by 28 yards. And it was McCluster's longest punt return since his rookie season in 2010, when he brought back a return 94 yards for a touchdown in the Chiefs' season-opening win over San Diego.
The Chiefs haven't returned a punt for a touchdown since.
Try finding those faux game results on a team website, and you'll need to scour a bit since any relationship between the preseason and regular season is purely coincidental.
Consider that last season the Chiefs won their preseason opener, which turned out to be half the number of games they'd win in 16 chances when it counted.
In 2012, Andy Reid's Philadelphia Eagles were 4-0, the only time in his 14 years there that that happened and, for that matter, one of just two times he ever had a winning preseason record. The other was 2011, when they went 3-1.
Helmet To Helmet - Checking Back In from The Mothership
Let me begin by saying that I am sorry for the long period between this and my last article. Since then, I have learned that the period between OTAs and the start of Training Camp looks like a quiet time on the outside, but from the inside it is a time of preparation.
In many ways this preparation has reminded me of getting ready for an overseas deployment. The most obvious similarity is that the bulk of the organization has moved itself and its operations to a remote location. Now, St. Joe is not as remote as Iraq or Afghanistan or any number of places service members are called to go to, it still takes a Herculean effort to move all the equipment and infrastructure and get it ready for operations.
Chiefs, KCFX Extend Radio Broadcast Deal from KC Star
The Chiefs have extended their radio broadcast contract with KCFX (101.1 FM) through the 2019 season, the team announced Friday. The first year of the new agreement in 2014 will mark the 25th anniversary of the club's radio partnership with KCFX.
Saint 17, Chiefs 13 from The Associated Press via ESPN
Here are five things we learned in the Saints' comeback victory over the Chiefs:
1. COMFORTABLE QB: Smith provided evidence that his new pairing with Reid, who calls offensive plays, could turn out well.Smith threw only one incompletion on eight attempts in marching the Chiefs to a touchdown on the game's opening drive. While he did not have a completion longer than 13 yards, he netted 68 yards passing, and the lone sack he took was a scramble out of bounds for a loss of only 1. Jamaal Charles closed out the 14-play, 80-yard drive with a short TD run through the line.
The Saints' first-team defense let Alex Smith, Jamaal Charles and Co. march down the field on the opening drive as if it were still 2012. The first-team offense stumbled against the Chiefs' starting defense as if it was overtime in Week 3 of 2012 all over again.
At least this time it was just preseason, and it was just for one quarter. That's what coach Sean Payton will take away from the Saints' 17-13 win against Kansas City in his first game back on the sideline since the 2011 season.
Don't Sleep On The Chiefs from Grantland
The Chiefs, 2-14 last year, are too far away from competitiveness to make the playoffs this season. Just like the Colts (2-14 in 2011) or Vikings (3-13) were too far away a year ago. Or the Dolphins (1-15) were before 2007. Or the Saints (3-13) were before 2006. Or, for that matter, the Chiefs (4-12) were before 2010.
You get the idea.
But it was almost stunning to see the relative ease with which the Chiefs moved the ball against a Saints defense that has been the emphasis of improvement since Ryan took over. In the first couple of series, however, it seemed like more of the same from last season as the Chiefs took a 10-0 lead after their first two offensive possessions.
Still the most shocking was the opening series when the Saints' defensive first team stood toe-to-toe with the Chiefs' first team and was picked apart.
Solid First Effort By Chiefs from Warpaint Illustrated
2. Special Teams - When was the last time Chiefs fans saw all four phases of it's special teams be successful in the same game. From Ryan Succop's first field goal,Dustin Colquitt's booming punts, Dexter McCluster's return abilities and strong cover units on punts and kick-offs.
If this is any indication of what lies ahead for the Chiefs, this unit could be the difference between eight and ten wins this season.
Observation Deck: Saints-Chiefs from ESPN
For those of you who thought coordinator Rob Ryan could come in and turn around the New Orleans Saints' defense overnight, think again.
This chore is going to take some time. That was apparent in Friday night's 17-13 victory against the Kansas City Chiefs at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
The Kansas City first-team offense, which wasn't very good last year, had no problem marching 80 yards on 14 plays for a touchdown on the opening drive of the game.
Fantasy Football Sleepers 2013: Giovani Bernard, Alex Smith Among Sleeper Options By Draft Position from The Huffington Post
Recognized as the proverbial game manager during his time in San Francisco under Jim Harbaugh, we can assure you that Andy Reid doesn't plan on using the soon-to-be eight-year veteran the same way in Kansas City, otherwise he wouldn't have shipped two draft picks to the Bay Area to acquire Smith's services. Reid loves to throw the football and a new city and new conference isn't going to change that. From 2004-2012, Reid's Philadelphia Eagles ranked in the top-10 in the NFL in passing attempts seven times. In Kansas City, Smith will be given every opportunity to spread his wings.
Chat Wrap: What Is Chiefs' Ceiling? from ESPN
Aaron Van Pelt from Boise: It's August so we Chiefs fans -- perennial masters of delusion -- are actually optimistic about this year's team. Realistically, how many wins do we muster this year?
Bill Williamson: I can see a 9-7 team. Yes, a seven-win swing is huge, but the pieces and coaching is there.
It's Time To Start Preparing For Fantasy Draft Day from USA Today
Offseason coaching changes add an element of mystery: One-quarter of the NFL teams have new head coaches. That means eight new systems will be put in place and eight new philosophies will be implemented.
Andy Reid leads the way with the Kansas City Chiefs. Fantasy owners who enjoyed the way Reid's offenses produced with the Philadelphia Eagles should be excited about the prospects for feature back Jamaal Charles, who figures to be more heavily involved in the passing game than he's been in the past.
Bscherer Done Chasing NFL Dream from The Door County Advocate
"I definitely feel like I could compete at that level, but you have to be healthy to do it," said Bscherer. "I got a call from the (Kansas City) Chiefs two days after I was cut, and they wanted to sign me. But my shoulder is not good and to go play at 80 percent and risk getting seriously injured wasn't worth it.