The Chiefs have traded top tier explosiveness in one receiver for speed and balance everywhere at all offensive skills positions in-depth. Not sure if many of you are familiar with how Formula 1 qualifying works, but three colors indicate one's pace over an entire lap, that being Yellow = losing time aka slow, Green = on pace, mere 10ths on or off pace, Purple= fastest in any given sector. The Chiefs offense with Tyreek Hill was a huge purple sector, BUT ... in one sector, where the yellow sector options of Demarcus Robinson, Byron Pringle and inconsistency of Hardman made the overall lap time, slow (Yellow). The Chiefs won't be setting any purple sectors for one sector and then slow everywhere else as before, but they will however be on pole in position 1 by being green everywhere (fast everywhere) with the occassional purple sector.
2018-2021 = Elite Rare Generational Speed And Route-Tree Skills BUT In One Guy (Tyreek)
2022 = Above Average Speed And Elite Route-Tree Skills BUT... Everywhere
Which means the Chiefs are fast everywhere with Valdez-Scantling, Juju, Mecole Hardman, Skyy Moore and the two TE Set of HoFamer Kelce and young dynamo Jody Fortson. Tyreek Hill was a bracketed option for most of the game with Mahomes obligating himself to a mandatory number of looks and throws, where either option of Kelce or Hill were freed up depending upon the coverage, however there were no consistent options who could beat man to man coverage consistently if those two were decently covered. Mecole is still inconsistent but his speed still keeps defenses honest and stretched over the top but in terms of route-tree man beating purists, you really can't ask for anything better than Marquez Valdez-Scantling and Juju Smith-Schuster.
Two observations: Mahomes from 2018 to 2021 had to break contain and thus the pocket to find Byron Pringle and Demarcus Robinson when Kelce and Reek were blanketed, he had to break contain to compensate for the lack of explosiveness off the line and speed for those receivers beating their man, his scrambling and off script throws allowed for those two specifically to get open. With Scantling and Juju (ignoring his fumbles), Mahomes barely had to break contain and the pocket to find those two. Which means Scantling and Juju are as advertised, as high end X receivers/slot receivers, beating DBs consistently and often off the line to get open immediately for large chucks of yardage. Of course the top speed of a Hardman is something that is rare but the addition of developing of Skyy and Hardman allows Andy to scheme and play around with top Y receiver positional speed and concepts as a matter of taking the top off and stretching coverages thin.
2018-2021 = Kelce Alone vs. 2022 = Kelce and Fortson
Not counting Fortson's playmaking before 2022 due to injury. Fortson adds a criminally underrated and overlooked talent that reminds me in raw talent in shades at least of Las Vegas' Darren Waller. Fortson along with Kelce provide a dynamic 2-TE personnel setting for short yardage and RedZone packages. You can't double cover/bracket both and also the youth of Fortson will allow the Chiefs to extend the shelf-life of Travis with less snaps and less game attrition.
2018-2021 Run Game
= Consistent Kareem Hunt elite play as a bruiser and occasional receiving back to crisis mode of having no real run game in 2018 due to the legal snafu, to drafting and understanding what CEH was and how to use him from 2019-2021 and gimmicky sign ons like Bell etc.
vs. 2022 Triplet modernized hybrid back approach
= almost elite speed with McKinnon and Pacheco along with the occasional between the yards carries for CEH but with the former two providing Mahomes with high-end hybrid-back Alvin Kamara-esque playmaking, with quick dump offs and safety valve screens to relieve pressure from 15.
Overall the Chiefs are better and not just by a little but by a lot. Elite Speed that was localized to an island and often bracketed by coverage in depth to one man is not better than Above Average Speed, (fast but not Olympic level fast) being spread at all three layers of the skills positions from WR, TE to RB. The Chiefs are now fast EVERYWHERE and even better teams won't even see it coming.