Week 15 in the NFL is over for the AFC West and the Kansas City Chiefs remain in first place. There are a lot of things to take away from this game but here are six thoughts I have as we wrap up the Chiefs ninth victory of the year.
Warming up to Matt Cassel. I'm not really talking about his stats -- 15-of-29 for 184 yards -- I'm talking about him playing after the appendectomy, showing some emotion as he ran for a first down and drawing my attention with the way he responded after a big play. Fans notice that and they like seeing the leader of the team jacked up like Cassel was. He still hasn't quite endeared himself to all of Chiefs nation but I think today's game was an important step in the right direction.
Jamaal Charles made me jump out of my seat. Surprisingly I'm usually pretty calm watching a Chiefs game but Jamaal Charles made me jump out of my seat on his 80-yard run inside five yard line. Not only was it a great run but it was perfect timing -- you could say clutch. We noticed another play where it appeared Tony Moeaki missed a blocking assignment but it didn't matter as Charles made on sharp cut up the left side of the field for a nine yard game. The guy is just so good.
The Tomahawk Chop is a good feeling. The TV broadcast cut to commercial at one point in the second half and as they pulled away you could hear the Tomahawk Chop starting. Chiefs fans showed up once again in St. Louis and made "The Ed" look more like a St. Louis Rams game. The Tomahawk Chop in an opponent's stadium is about as good as it gets.game than a
The Chiefs are getting hot at the right time. OK so we all remember last week's game against the San Diego Chargers. It was miserable and it didn't look anything like the Chiefs we've become accustomed to this season. But looking at the big picture, the Chiefs have now won four of their last five games. Three of those wins were by two scores or more. They've gone over 27 points three times in that span and over 159 yards rushing in four times in that span. Consistency is still a question but this is a very good team.
Todd Haley was right about the dome. Earlier this week Haley referenced the heat in the Edward Jones Dome and I didn't quite understand what he was talking about. After seeing a couple of Chiefs -- most notable Jamaal Charles -- cramp up I think I know what he was talking about. Before the game you could see Cassel was dripping sweat. It didn't look like they controlled their temperature-controlled dome.
Chiefs cap undefeated record against NFC West. The Chiefs played all four NFC West teams and came away with four victories. The NFC West is frequently called the worst division in football so I think it's important not to overlook the importance of the Chiefs going in and beating those teams. Simply beating the teams you should will get you on the doorstep of the playoffs.