Do you believe in miracles?!?
Er, what about moral victories??? In this case, I do. I really do.
If you're telling me you weren't encouraged after the Kansas City Chiefs went toe-to-toe with the defending AFC Champions, were two yards away from tying, or having a chance to win the hardest game on the season's schedule, then you're crazy like a
What if I told you the Red Team was without their best player, best linebacker, best secondary player, best offensive tackle, best offensive guard, and their best returner?
Of course there are moral victories to be had here! The Chiefs are no longer considered one of the worst teams in the league, that's a good start. After last week, I was bracing myself for a 40 point rout on Sunday. But those 53 men, reduced to 27 because of injuries, played their asses off.
Sure, the Chiefs are 0-2 if you want to be black-and-white about it. But, I look to a day, when football teams will not be judged by the color of their record, but by the content of their games.
Come take a journey into the gray with me...
The Best and Worst w/ His Dirkness
Best way to beat Peyton Manning - Keep him off the field. Geez, that sounds like most generic announcer speak ever doesn't it? I mean, of course that works, that would work against anybody. But still, it seems particularly effective on Peyton. There are two known ways to knock him out of his rhythm: The strategical way, by playing keep away all game long. And the hit him in the mouth way, but you have to do that before he curdles up into the fetal position, which he's so accustomed to.
Some fun stats from yesterday: The Broncos only scored three points in the second half. Guess how many possessions they had after halftime? Two, plus a kneel down. They ran all of 15 plays in the second half. That's unreal. And it's the biggest reason this game was so close.
Best / Worst effort - Andy Reid. He absolutely deserves credit for everything I've just said. His gameplan and his halftime adjustments were both top-notch on Sunday. He's a great coach, Monday through Saturday. But on Sundays, he's making too many egregious game management errors. The punt on 4th-and-1 takes the cake this week (now do I have your attention, Andy?). I'm of the belief you should almost always go for it on 4th-and-1 (hey, so is science). Let alone, when you're at midfield, losing the game and playing a team that's better than you. A gotsta go situation. So, of course, when the Broncos are faced with literally the same scenario (4th-and-1, own 48), they go for it and convert easily. Made me want to puke.
Other illogical decisions from Andy Reid on Sunday, with a quick reminder that I judge based off intent, not result (don't make me bring MLK Jr. back into this!): He should've gone for two, plain and simple. His second challenge was a waste, leaving the team with no challenges (made on the fly, semi-defensible, still an error). His late game timeout was horrendous, it only saved time for Denver to score in response. Denver not calling their timeouts at the end (I know, that was Denver's error, but I think Andy was starting to rub off on them). This may seem like inconsequential bickering to you, and that's fine, carry on. But just know, with a logical type personality, this type of stuff racks my brain. And it's all fairly easily correctable. There are thousands of people (most of whom played Madden growing up) that could assist Andy with this type of stuff. Some of them even write for popular Chiefs blogs and require very little in terms of compensation. Delegate, Andy. Delegate.
Best down to be great on - Third down. And Alex Smith was assuredly that. 11-16 on the day, all converted by Alex, including a 3rd-and-18, 3rd-and-13, and 3rd-and-11. That's a winning effort from your QB. If only he could've held back on his initial read to Bowe on 4th-and-goal, looked to scramble and create something out of nothing. That was the only way the Chiefs were scoring on that play.
Best offensive weapon, sans Jamaal - Travis Kelce, who still registered only 32 of 86 snaps on Sunday, a paltry 37 percent. That's 54 snaps without your top weapon, including the biggest of the game. I will harp on this every week until it's corrected because Kelce has the potential to be that damn good. Play the man!
Worst call - In terms of negligence, it'd be the offsides call on Tamba that occurred four seconds after the clock struck 2:00. In terms of importance, it'd be the bull biscuits pass interference call on Marcus Cooper. If Denver scores a touchdown on that drive, you better believe that call leads off my article today. Sooooo bad.
Worst rule - Why is 12 men on the defense a dead ball foul? Also of note, why must I care so much about the most minute parts of the game? It's like a disease, I tell you.
Best rule - You can't throw a forward pass once your past the line of scrimmage. I think we can all agree that's a solid rule. Good for the game. Alex Smith is just a rebel. This is not 'Nam, Alex.
Best DJ impression - Tamba Hali. Remember when Derrick Johnson was super inconsistent, got benched for a whole season, and then came back the next season and was immediately great? (That was actually Todd Haley's crowning achievement in KC.) Well yesterday, we saw an extremely condensed version of that, with Tamba sitting out a few series in the first half (probably because he's a little dinged up), only to come out like a man possessed in the second half. With such a depleted defense, it was great to see Tamba step up when the team needed it most.
Worst comparison - Knile Davis to Priest Holmes. Terrible, right? But ... I can't stop seeing it. Am I the only one? The patience. The hand on his lead blocker. You know the play I'm talking about. Do we know if Fury of the Knile plays chess at all? I'd love to schedule a weekly game with him, if he's looking for a boost in confidence.
Worst play in franchise history - Montee Ball's hyperbolic 23-yard run on 3rd-and-24. Hard to watch.
Best shot - Julius Thomas catches a touchdown pass and crashes straight into the camera. And CBS has the angle available immediately because, well, the NFL is awesome.
Best Suck Up - Cairo Santos. Cause, I mean, how else did he win the job? Even his made field goals don't look right.
Well, I'd better finish up this article before SB Nation changes their rules and only allows the Broncos' site to post articles on Mondays. Oh hey, one more...
Best suggestions for the NFL to further appease Peyton Manning next season -
- Require Demaryius Thomas to share half of his mid-game sandwich with Peyton
- Sell NFL licensed red forehead spots
- Move the NFL offices to Omaha, Nebraska
- Replace Roger Goodell with this guy...
A lot going on in this photo: The K-State hat. The lady in the upper right trying to eat the score graphic. Buffalo winning a professional football game. And, OH MY GOD THERE'S A POLE GOING THROUGH THAT GUY'S NECK!!! I mean, did you look at that??? Is he ok? Is the pole just a part of the costume? Is that a Boohbah? Does the guy next to him look so annoyed because he just happened to sit next to a guy equipped with a giant pole, which may or may not be impaled through his neck? Is the towel/visor look a popular fashion statement in Denver?
Waiting patiently for the Bronco tears in January,