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Kansas City Chiefs Front Seven Evaluation: NFL Week Six

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Hey everyone,  I'm here to bring you the KPM for the Houston Texans vs. Kansas City Chiefs game last week.  It was definitely a down week, but that's to be expected with the yardage given up.  As always, the rating system is located here.  Let's get to it!


  • 70.6% of the time, the Chiefs were in the 3-4 defense
  • 29.4% of the time, the Chiefs were in the nickel defense
  • 17.2% of the time, the Chiefs blitzed a safety or a linebacker.
  • The first defensive play of the game was a well sniffed out running play in which Smith and Edwards commanded double teams, Vrabel strung out the edge, and Flowers made the tackle. What I didn't see the first time was that Wade Smith dove at Edwards' leg while the center had Edwards locked up. After missing Edwards' leg, Smith swung his legs out at DJ. Smith was not penalized on this occasion.
  • Once again, the nickel defense featured Jon McGraw as a hybrid safety/linebacker, playing even with DJ and Vrabel.

  • Second drive in, CBS is killing me. They are missing the lineups, instead focusing on close ups of various players/coaches. Thus far, I haven't missed the formations, but it makes it a little harder to see where players started and the gaps they are filling when the play is already started.

  • Vrabel is really giving Owen Daniels a hard time getting off the line of scrimmage early on. Lots of physicality right off the snap, not allowing the timing to set in.

  • First play of the second quarter, it's a 3rd and 1 for Houston. The Chiefs line up in a nickel defense, with DJ shading the strong side. They send the blitz with Berry on the strong side, but the hand off goes to the weak side. Dorsey lets a free man through, which stifles DJ (who wouldn't have stopped the first down), and Foster runs for a 21-yard gain. I've stated before, and I'll restate it here: I don't like the nickel on 3rd and short. Let the front three do their business and put the best run defender (Belcher) on the field.

  • Case in point: the next set of downs, Houston has another 3rd and 1. The Chiefs come out in the 3-4, so Schaub audibles to a pass play. The result was a Flowers pass break up and a defensive stop for the Chiefs. Lining up in the 3-4 changed the play.

  • Houston's third drive of the game had both Demorrio Williams and Anthony Toribio on the field in place of DJ and Ron Edwards.

  • On the play where Andre Johnson got free on a Brandon Carr slip, I noticed that Dorsey was not only held by the lineman in front of him, one of the linemen went for the legs again! This is a bit of a disturbing trend that I did not see watching live.

  • Solid play by Demorrio Williams on Houston's third drive. Belcher and Vrabel drop into coverage alongside Demorrio. The play develops, and Arian Foster comes out of the backfield. Demorrio immediately picks him up. Schaub is unable to find an open receiver, forcing him to checkdown to Foster. Demorrio is immediately on top of the running back and stops him for a short gain.

  • Belcher again is tentative to shoot the gap. Against Cleveland and San Francisco, he hit the gaps hard and it paid off. Against Indy, and so far in this game, he's incredibly tentative in getting to the line and making the play.

  • Toribio with three consecutive free men let through to the second level. All three, he was reaching for the other and just couldn't get there. Once, he actually got a paw on the lineman and got a big handful of jersey, then the lineman got away. Could've been a defensive holding call.

  • Houston's first TD was not on the front seven. Tamba badly beat the lineman, then got his facemask turned sideways, preventing him from getting to the quarterback. Yet another missed call.

  • Great penetration through a double team to get a sack by Ron Edwards. That's two for the big man this year. It was created because Belcher blitzed and the center couldn't make up his mind about which player to block. Ron cut through the gap and got it.

  • The called Leg Whip penalty on Wade Smith was less egregious than the first one.

  • Yikes. Houston's second touchdown had DJ filling the gap and getting into the backfield. He then missed the tackle, and then Edwards and Belcher missed them as well. All received negative KPM.

  • 3rd and 1, first play of the 4th quarter: Houston needs to pick up the first down to keep up with the Chiefs scoring attack. The linebackers force a checkdown to Arian Foster, and DJ is all over the coverage. DJ then tries to arm tackle Foster at least three yards behind the line of scrimmage and misses the tackle. Foster picks up the first down and keeps a touchdown drive alive.

  • Yet again, Houston's left guard goes for Ron Edwards' knee while Edwards is engaged with the center. This time, the left guard actually got Edwards' knee and opened the gap.

  • On Houston's first 4th quarter touchdown, Foster took the handoff over the left guard. Dorsey did not close the gap, and Foster ran right by him. Sloppy play out of Dorsey.

  • Back-to-back terrible coverage plays by Belcher and Vrabel that allowed giant yardage. The discipline the team is showing right now isn't good. After Vrabel's big gaffe, Studebaker immediately replaced him.

  • No real blame to place on Foster's 2nd touchdown. The defensive line did their jobs, DJ and Belcher covered the gap, Foster just made something happen. Not a whole lot the Chiefs could have done on that play.

  • Tamba isn't in the game at the end of the Foster touchdown drive and the next drive. This is the first time this year that I have seen him leave the field. Instead, both Vrabel and Studebaker are on the field.

  • Houston is doing an excellent job of picking up the blitz in the final drive. Making it very difficult to get pressure on Schaub.



    The KPM's:

    Glenn Dorsey 

    Dorsey did not make the impact he normally does.  Two gaps filled, two double teams, a quarterback pressure, and a tackle for no gain were offset by his touchdown-causing gap opened for the running back and one free man.  He was routinely stifled by one offensive lineman, and didn't have the impact in the running game that he's shown this year.

    Overall KPM:  2 Points

    Snaps:  55

    KPM/Snap:  0.036

    Ron Edwards 

    Ron had himself another solid outing.  He had one filled gap, five double teams, one backfield penetration, one sack, and one tackle for no gain.  On the negative side, he he two free men, and was in the train of missed tackles that led to a touchdown.  He seemed to shy away from the left guard after getting hit in the knees several times this game, which led to a lack of explosiveness towards the end of the game.

    Overall KPM:  10 Points 

    Snaps:  27

    KPM/Snap:  0.370

    Wallace Gilberry 

    Wallace does it again!  This week, he caught three double teams, three quarterback pressures (two forcing the quarterback out of the pocket), one sack, and one free man.  He saw a good amount of time as a 3-4 defensive end, sometimes as Dorsey's replacement, and sometimes as Shaun Smith's replacement.  He looked very comfortable in the 3-4, and was a handful in the nickel, as usual.

    Overall KPM: 16 Points 

    Snaps:  23

    KPM/Snap:  0.696

    Shaun Smith 

    Shaun Smith just shows up, puts up KPM, and goes home happy!  He recorded six double teams, one quarterback pressure that forced him out of the pocket, and forced a holding penalty.  He did let one free man through and got called on an illegal hands to the face penalty.  The guy continues to do the right things week in and week out.  This was truly a free agent catch (pun intended).

    Overall KPM: 14 Points

    Snaps:  38

    KPM/Snap:  0.368


    Anthony Toribio


    Oh no, it's Bad Toribio!  Anthony filled one gap and was double teamed once, but let four free men through.  He looked completely out of his element in relief of Edwards.  Having Tyson Jackson back into the fold should mean Toribio isn't...which based on two out of his three performances, may not be a bad thing.

    Overall KPM:  -5 Points

    Snaps:  13

    KPM/Snap:  -0.385

    Mike Vrabel


    Vrabel was better overall than usual this week.  He had one gap filled, one forced checkdown, and three quarterback pressures (one forced out of the pocket).  His major (and only) negative KPM play came on a giant pass completion where he missed coverage on Owen Daniels.  It was a pivotal 30+ yard play that gouged the Chiefs defense late in the game.  Still, his delayed pass rushes seemed to be more effective than usual, which is a good sign.

    Overall KPM:  7 Points

    Snaps:  53

    KPM/Snap:  0.132


    Tamba Hali


    Yikes!  This was not the normal Tamba.  One gap filled and three quarterback pressures is all he brought, which is usually the first half of a game.  Yes, he was held badly several times, and there were several more plays that Tamba took the outside route only to have Schaub step up into the pocket out of his grasp.  He'll bounce back against a Jacksonville team that struggles with speed rushers.

    Overall KPM:  7 Points

    Snaps:  57

    KPM/Snap:  0.123


    Demorrio Williams


    Demorrio finally saw some linebacker snaps!  He was on the field and sniffed out a screen pass for a successful pass coverage.  When DJ came back into the game, Demorrio sat out.

    Overall KPM:  1 Point

    Snaps:  8

    KPM/Snap:  0.125


    Derrick Johnson


    DJ is always a bit hard to judge while I'm doing these rankings.  At times, I think he's playing amazing, but he'll let one or two plays bring his overall total down.  This week was no different:  Seven gaps filled, four forced checkdowns, and one successful coverage were offset by one late to the gap play and two missed tackles, one that resulted in a touchdown.  His coverage skills were MUCH better today, and his run defense was fairly solid...he just got beat on a couple of plays that were tide-turners.

    Overall KPM:  8 Points

    Snaps:  50

    KPM/Snap:  0.160


    Jovan Belcher


    Jovan suffered badly this week.  He had three gaps filled, two forced checkdowns, and two quarterback pressures (one out of pocket).  On the negative side, he had two wrong gaps, allowed two big pass completions, and joined DJ on the missed tackle train that led to a touchdown.  Jovan almost seems to be struggling with Shaun Smith in front of him recently.  Instead of getting to the hole early, he's almost waiting for Smith to pick a gap before attempting to hit one.  It almost seems like the gap responsibility call either isn't happening at all or isn't happening correctly.  Either way, it needs to be sorted out quickly.

    Overall KPM:   -2 Points

    Snaps:  41

    KPM/Snap:  -0.049



    Andy Studebaker


    Studebaker came into the game immediately after Vrabel's gaffe and recorded a forced checkdown and a highlight reel one-handed tackle.  He didn't really get pressure on the quarterback, but did well to be physical with the tight ends off the line.

    Overall KPM:  2 Points

    Snaps:  7

    KPM/Snap:  0.286



KPM Rankings:

Defensive Line:

1.  Wallace Gilberry                 16

2.  Shaun Smith                       14

3.  Ron Edwards                      10

4.  Glenn Dorsey                       2

5.  Anthony Toribio                   -5


1.  Derrick Johnson                8

2.  Tamba Hali                         7

3.  Mike Vrabel                         7

4.  Andy Studebaker                2

5.  Demorrio Williams            1

6.  Javon Belcher                    -2

KPM/Snap Rankings:

Defensive Line:

1.  Wallace Gilberry                  .696

2.  Ron Edwards                       .370

3.  Shaun Smith                        .368

4.  Glenn Dorsey                       .036

5.  Anthony Toribio                   -.385


1.  Andy Studebaker                 .286

2.  Derrick Johnson                  .160

3.  Mike Vrabel                           .132

4.  Demorrio Williams              .125

5.  Tamba Hali                          .123

6.  Jovan Belcher                      -.049

Season Long KPM/Snap Rankings:

Defensive Line:

1.  Wallace Gilberry                  .550

2.  Shaun Smith                        .490

3.  Ron Edwards                       .470

4.  Tyson Jackson                     .343

5.  Glenn Dorsey                       .241

6.  Anthony Toribio                   -.098


    1.  Andy Studebaker                  .314

    2.  Tamba Hali                           .281

    3.  Derrick Johnson                  .135

    4.  Mike Vrabel                           .123

    5.  Demorrio Williams              .121

    6.  Jovan Belcher                       .074

    7.  Corey Mays                          -.100

    And now, time for Kalo's MVP of the Week!  For the second week in a row, it's WALLACE GILBERRY!


    I can't really give it to anybody but Wallace this week.  He came in and played strong against both the pass and the run, recorded another sack, and added some pressure to the quarterback.  Crennel has definitely found creative ways to allow Wallace to get into the backfield, but Wallace is finding his own as well.  This kid really is a special player, and offenses just can't seem to figure out how to get to him.  Great job, Wallace!

    Have a great day everyone, and thanks for reading!

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