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From Chiefs Coast 2 Coast: The Chiefs’ up-and-down defense

In their latest podcast, Aaron and Mark discuss their concerns about Kansas City’s defense.

NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

On the latest episode of the Chiefs Coast 2 Coast podcast, Aaron Ladd and Mark Gunnels discuss the Kansas City Chiefs defense’s latest struggles.

(Listen to the podcast above or by clicking here. It is also available on Spotify.)

Defensive worries

Mark: “If I had to put a number on it from one to 10, I would say my worry level is around a six. Actually, it’s probably closer to a seven — so more like a 6.8. My biggest concern is the safety play from Justin Reid and Juan Thornhill. They haven’t been playmakers this season... I have more confidence in the young cornerbacks right now than I do in the Chiefs' safeties. They aren’t tackling well and aren’t taking good angles on the football. Most of the time you don’t even notice they are on the field... I know they’re better than Daniel Sorensen — but if that’s the bar, then this defense is probably in trouble. I never thought this year I’d be at a point where I’d say that I miss Tyrann Mathieu. I know he wasn’t tackling at the end — but at least he made plays on the football... It’s discouraging what you’ve gotten out of the Chiefs safeties this season.”

Aaron: “The tackling has been an issue on a weekly basis for the Chiefs this year. It’s especially been exposed recently... L’Jarius Sneed has been one of the better tacklers for this defense on the season. The biggest positive has been the sack numbers for this unit. The Chiefs have 42 sacks on the season — and they’ve managed to limit the big plays this season. This defense has only given up 42 plays over 20 yards, which is seventh in the NFL... The one thing the Chiefs really need from the defense the rest of the way is turnovers. The Chiefs only have 14 total takeaways on the season — which is the bottom half of the league. Turnovers change the game — and Kansas City hasn’t been particularly good at it this season.”

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