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Arrowheadlines: The Chiefs still view Kadarius Toney as a ‘special talent’

Chiefs headlines for Monday, September 11

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Detroit Lions v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images

The latest

Chiefs Rumors: NFL Insider Says KC Views Kadarius Toney as ‘Special Talent’ | Bleacher Report

Despite that rough start, the Chiefs still see Toney as a “special talent” and viewed him as “possibly even a No. 1-type receiver down the road” prior to the 2023 campaign, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler:

“Here’s the Chiefs’ thinking on receiver Kadarius Toney, who struggled mightily Thursday night in the season opener against Detroit. When they traded for Toney at the deadline last year, they considered the move low-risk; he was in the second year of a rookie deal with major upside as a player. He helped them win a Super Bowl with some electric playmaking, and Kansas City entered the season believing Toney can be a featured player — possibly even a No. 1-type receiver down the road. The organization sees him as a special talent.

“But the Chiefs weren’t necessarily counting on that, especially since Toney had injury concerns coming out of New York. The Chiefs did a deep dive on him before trading for him, and they are hoping for the best but also have room to pivot. Here’s guessing Toney will get more chances to find his footing after a knee injury cost him the preseason.”

David Bakhtiari ‘baffled’ by Jawaan Taylor’s alignment: ‘I can’t defend that’ | The Athletic

Bakhtiari has watched the film of Taylor’s performance and he doesn’t think Taylor’s early jump was the real issue.

“I sent all my buddies a group text and I said, I don’t care about his get-off,” Bakhtiari said. “There were a lot legal, some of them I would say they didn’t get called, but that is the fringe, the gray area. I can live with that. His alignment was — I was baffled.

“I just remember looking at that and thinking, dude, what? You have to break the center’s belt,” Bakhtiari continued. “Hence why, from my stance, my foot is super far back, so it makes me look super far back in general, but that’s why I always lean my head super far forward. If he wants to be that far back, you have to lean your head forward and break the center’s belt.”

Chiefs receiver tryouts flyer found on KC telephone pole | The Kansas City Star

There was this email address:

Funny stuff, right? That salary is actually a little lower than what a player would be paid because the NFL minimum is $750,000 this season.

Still, this is clever and it was shared by Yahoo Sports, who may have been behind the prank.

NFL 2023 Week 1: Biggest questions, risers and takeaways | ESPN

Stock up after the loss: DE Felix Anudike-Uzomah. The Chiefs’ first-round draft pick (No. 31 overall) stood out — registering two tackles and two QB hits — as the Chiefs search for pass-rush help playing without Chris Jones and Charles Omenihu.

Stock down after the loss: Short-yardage offense. The Chiefs had nine plays in which they needed 2 yards for a fresh set of downs and converted on three of those. The Chiefs struggle with power football and often get too cute with their approach. — Adam Teicher

NFL week 1 insights: what we learned about every team, game by game | Sports Illustrated

What it means for Chiefs: The Chiefs need to get better gloves. While drops are different for everybody, I counted an astounding nine for Kansas City, including four from Kadarius Toney. If the defending champs get tight end Travis Kelce back next week and hold onto a few easy passes, they’ll be fine.

Around the NFL

Chargers vs. Dolphins score, takeaways: Tua Tagovailoa, Tyreek Hill explode in shootout victory | CBS Sports

The Tagovailoa-Hill connection is as lethal as it’s ever been. You can’t overstate the importance of a dynamic QB-WR connection, and boy do these guys have it. Tua casually racked up 466 yards by leaning heavily on Hill’s unmatched speed, but he also showed situational grit and tight-window touch late in Sunday’s game. There are concerns: the offense lacked much pop on the ground, and Vic Fangio’s defense invited all kinds of rushing success. But if Tua can stay upright and sling it like he did against the Chargers’ mostly hapless secondary, it’s fair to fear Miami. Even at 29, Hill feels like a unicorn at his position.

Why the Chargers lost

Brandon Staley is still in charge, and he’s still yet to showcase anything resembling even a half-vaunted defense. Herbert was nowhere close to Tua’s numbers, but that’s because Ekeler had his way on the ground alongside Joshua Kelley. And yet none of it really mattered, because Staley’s “D,” save for an end-zone pick by J.C. Jackson and an early fumble recovery, had no answers — schematically, physically, however — for the Hill show. Herbert didn’t help late with a critical intentional-grounding penalty on the final drive, but all in all, this was a coaching and defensive defeat.

Cowboys set franchise history, leave ‘no doubt’ with 40-0 win | ESPN

Micah Parsons was not surprised by the Dallas Cowboys’ 40-0 throttling of the New York Giants on Sunday.

“No doubt in my mind,” Parsons said. “I saw it before anybody. I said, ‘I can’t wait to get to New York.’ I already knew we was coming. Just because when preparation meets execution, I don’t think there’s no one that can beat us.”

Sunday marked:

* The largest shutout win in franchise history. Prior to Sunday, that distinction belonged to a 38-0 win against the Baltimore Colts in 1978.

* The second-largest margin of victory against the Giants in 122 matchups. In 1966, the Cowboys opened the season with a 56-7 win over New York. And in 1995, the Cowboys opened the year with a 35-0 win against the Giants.

* The Cowboys became the fifth team to open their season with a shutout of 40-plus points on the road, according to ESPN Stats & Information research. The last such occasion came in 1999, when the Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Cleveland Browns, 43-0.

* The Cowboys sacked Daniel Jones seven times. It was the most sacks in a season opener by a Dallas defense since it had nine in 1994.

* Cowboys running back Tony Pollard was the fifth Cowboy in the last 50 years with multiple rushing touchdowns in a season opener and the first since Marion Barber in 2008.

Geno Smith screamed hilarious reaction as Aaron Donald busts through line to hit him | SB Nation

One of the best at that in the league? Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald. There might be no scarier sight for a modern NFL quarterback than the sight of Donald bearing down on you.

It is a sight that strikes fear in the hearts of the the NFL’s bravest passers.

Unfortunately for Seattle Seahawks passer Geno Smith, he has to face Donald and the Rams twice each season. His first meeting with Donald for the 2023 campaign came in Week 1, and late in the second quarter Donald got a free run at the quarterback.

And Smith reacted about as well as one might expect. Note, you’ll want to have the volume turned up for this:

Bengals WR Ja’Marr Chase after blowout loss to Browns: ‘We just lost to some elves’ |

Joey Franchise is now 1-5 against the Browns franchise and dropped to 0-3 in Cleveland, where the Bengals haven’t won since 2017.

Sunday’s loss came days after Chase said playing in Cleveland was just a normal game.

“It don’t feel no different,” Chase said Thursday. “It’s just the hooping and hollering about the Cleveland Browns. I was about to call them the elves, but yeah.”

Those elves stood tall Sunday, shrinking the Bengals down to 142 yards of offense.

A clearly dismayed Chase didn’t let his squad’s three-point showing dissuade him from piling on the elf talk, though.

“It’s frustrating because I called they ass elves and we just lost to some elves,” said Chase of the Browns, who have a mascot named Brownie the Elf. “So I’m pissed on my part, I’m pissed on that end.

Ravens RB J.K. Dobbins tears Achilles, out for season | ESPN

Dobbins went down five minutes after halftime when he took a short pass in the right flat and was wrestled to the ground by Houston Texans safety M.J. Stewart just 2 yards shy of the end zone. He limped to the sideline before heading to the locker room with his arms draped around trainers to assist him.

Afterward, Baltimore wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. said Dobbins’ injury made his stomach hurt, and inside linebacker Patrick Queen fought off tears when talking about Dobbins.

“You can’t replace a J.K.,” Ravens guard Kevin Zeitler said. “[He’s a] special guy, both football-wise and personality-wise. He helps keep his team moving and all that. So, an absolute gut punch and heartbreaking.”

Steelers HC Mile Tomlin on worst home loss of his career: ‘We got kicked in the teeth’ |

While the 49ers emerged looking every bit like an NFC Super Bowl contender, the Steelers limped away from Acrisure Stadium looking like preseason pretenders.

“We accept responsibility obviously for the outcome,” Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said after the game, via the team website. “We compliment those guys on the quality of work that they did. We absorb the negativity that comes with how we performed today, and we go back to work. We’ve got to prepare them better. They’ve got to play better. That’s just the reality of it.

“We got kicked in the teeth today in a lot of ways.”

In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride

Chiefs-Lions Week 1: 5 winners and 4 losers in Kansas City’s loss


Cornerback Trent McDuffie: Meanwhile, 2021’s first-round pick was displaying his ascension into a top-tier corner. On Thursday night, McDuffie had eight tackles and a forced fumble — and didn’t allow a single completion in coverage. The sky is the limit for this guy.

Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo: Working without his best player (and against a very good Lions offense), the Chiefs’ defensive coordinator’s unit held the opposition to only 14 points in primetime. When you can do that on a team where Mahomes (and head coach Andy Reid) are running the offense, you should expect to win nearly every single week.

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