The Kansas City Chiefs beat Houston 42-34 on Sunday Night Football, and after the game, The Star’s Sam Mellinger (@mellinger), Vahe Gregorian (@vgregorian), Blair Kerkhoff (@BlairKerkhoff) and Terez A. Paylor (@TerezPaylor) convened in the press box at NRG Stadium to dissect if Alex Smith an MVP candidate, how they wll replace Chris Conley and what's going on with the defensive struggles? They'll discuss all that, plus answer your reader questions.
"Right now, it's a small win," a Caesars sportsbook manager told ESPN, before the Chiefs-Texans game kicked off. "We're lopsided on the Chiefs for this game, so it would eat away most of our profits for the day."
Following the arrival of Patrick Mahomes, Alex Smith has moved past his conservative style of play to the benefit of the Kansas City Chiefs.
The X receiver almost always lines up formationally on the opposite side of the Y (often the tight end role, obviously most often played by Travis Kelce). If it’s a standard 3x1 formation, Conley is typically your lone receiver to one side. In 3x1 formations, X receivers should expect to get a dose of press coverage. Even in some zone coverages, X will be locked with the corner opposite him who have man principles in playing a single receiver side.
—Deshaun Watson had another solid performance in almost bringing the Texans back. Watson continues to be good with no pressure, completing 8-of-15 passes for 126 yards and two touchdowns, and he was improved under pressure with 8-of-16 for 135 yards with three touchdowns and three sacks. Watson wasn't great throwing downfield, completing only 6-of-16 attempts, but hose six completions went for 173 yards and three touchdowns. Watson finished the game with an overall grade of 80.1, sixth best among QBs in Week 5.
Alex Smith is a major reason why the Chiefs have been great in 2017. As long as Alex keeps playing even close to what he is currently and KC stays somewhat healthy, the Chiefs are going to dominate the AFC. The “Same Old Chiefs” are dead, and it’s time to KaDreem.
The Chiefs, via the Hunt Family Foundation, and the KU Cancer Center will each raise $50,000 for cancer research, according to a press release from the organizations. The V Foundation, a nonprofit founded by ESPN and the late coach Jim Valvano, plans to match the $100,000 and fund a junior investigator grant.
The Chiefs would have been lost without Smith, not only against the Texans, but in all of their five games. Smith is on pace for 35 touchdown passes and more than 4,400 yards. Both totals would shatter his personal season bests of 23 touchdowns (in 2013) and 3,502 yards (2016).
The Chiefs came out and took care of business offensively early as they scored on all five of their first-half possessions, while Alex Smith went 18 of 24 for 207 yards and two touchdowns. He finished the game 29 of 37 for 324 yards with three touchdowns.
Maybe what was most impressive in the first half was Smith’s efficiency on third down, leading the offense to convert 7 of 10 third downs in the first 30 minutes of the game, and three of those were on third-and-11 or longer.
“Throughout the league, you’re even seeing them at the college level, which is kind of unique,” Reid said, via Blair Kerkhoff of the Kansas City Star. “I don’t remember this being [like] that. At one point a few years ago, you could kinda look at the shoes, but the shoe companies, I think, have done a pretty good job of putting these things together. So I don’t know exactly why. But it does seem there are a few of these.”
Following the game, Mike Tomlin said there were no major injuries of note, and on a day when the team had 21 of its 22 starters available, the hope is to have all 22 back on the field if Marcus Gilbert is able to finally return from an injured hamstring which kept him out of the lineup for the past three weeks.
Smith won’t take all the credit.
“I’ve got some good teammates, some good coaches making me look good,” Smith said to Deion Sanders on Sunday night on GameDay Prime on NFL Network.