PICK NO. 31: KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: EDGE FELIX ANUDIKE-UZOMAH
Overall Rookie Grade: 68.8 (Rank: 3/12)
Principal Opponent: Taylor Decker
Week 1 Snaps: 19
Anudike-Uzomah enjoyed a nice debut, with his 68.8 overall grade leading all Chiefs defensive linemen in the absence of Chris Jones. On just 19 snaps, he recorded a run stop and two third-down hits that forced Jared Goff to release the football off balance. Anudike-Uzomah’s play strength isn’t quite ready for an every-down role, but he looked like a solid rotational piece in his first game.
Kansas City Chiefs (0-1) at Jacksonville Jaguars (1-0)
1 p.m. ET (CBS)
If there’s one quarterback you don’t ever want to pick against coming off a loss, it’s definitely Patrick Mahomes. As the old saying goes, “hell hath no fury like Patrick Mahomes coming off a loss.” At least, I think that’s how that old saying goes. I have no idea. I can’t keep up with these things.
Over the course of his career, Mahomes is 13-3 following a loss and in those 16 games, he’s thrown 42 total touchdown passes compared to just 15 interceptions. Normally, I’d say the Jaguars have no chance in this game, but I think this all comes down to whether Travis Kelce plays. If the Jags proved one thing last year, it’s that they can’t guard a good tight end. Last season, the Jags surrendered 1,066 yards to tight ends, which was the fourth most in the NFL. If you include the playoffs, they were even worse: Kelce burnt them for 98 yards and two touchdowns when these two teams met in the divisional round.
If Kelce plays, I think the Chiefs win comfortably. If Kelce doesn’t play, I don’t feel as comfortable picking the Chiefs, but I’m still taking them because this game is being played on Patrick Mahomes’ birthday and there’s no way I’m picking against Patrick Mahomes on his birthday.
The pick: Chiefs 27-24 over Jaguars
7) Lions restore the roar in Kansas City
I’ve clowned on the Lions in the past by employing a common refrain from their long-suffering fan base: Rebuilding since 1957. No more! Not after what Dan Campbell’s squad showed us in the Kickoff Game, raining on the defending Super Bowl champion Chiefs’ parade with a gutsy 21-20 win at Arrowhead Stadium. The most impressive part: The Lions didn’t even play their “A” game. That’s why this is a group to believe in — a group I believe in, having picked Detroit to win its first division title since 1993.
I don’t want to hear about the Chiefs missing Travis Kelce and Chris Jones. They still had Patrick Mahomes, the reigning league/Super Bowl MVP who was undefeated in preseason openers before the Lions came to town last week
Tagovailoa has jumped to No. 2 in the MVP race after throwing for 466 yards, three touchdowns and one interception in the Dolphins’ Week 1 win over the Los Angeles Chargers. The Miami passer was tied for ninth in MVP odds leading up to Week 1.
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes remains No. 1 in the MVP race, though, after the Detroit Lions upset the Chiefs in Week 1.
Kelce has not always been so well off, however, and has only himself to blame earlier on in his NFL career.
The Chiefs selected him in the third round in 2013 and he got a signing bonus of around $800,000.
As someone who was fresh out of college, where he could not make any money, it is perhaps understandable that he made some extravagant purchases.
The top of that list was a pair Nike Air Mags, that were replicas of the shoes worn by Marty McFly in Back To The Future II.
Detroit Lions at Kansas City Chiefs
Detroit’s rookie TE Sam LaPorta produced a quietly strong debut, securing all five of his targets for 39 yards receiving. Among 16 pre-Sunday night tight ends with at least five targets, his 1.50 YPRR ranked No. 4, and he was one of three to secure a 100.0 percent catch rate.
LaPorta’s 26 routes run were No. 3 on the team and just three short of No. 2 WR Josh Reynolds.
Around the NFL
He’s been in the league since 2009, most recently Justin Herbert’s backup for the Los Angeles Chargers, and so trustworthy that he’s raked in more than $40 million in career earnings while starting all of five games. Daniel won’t win the Super Bowl, but his experience with multiple offenses could make him a better backstop than Boyle despite the latter’s familiarity with OC Nathaniel Hackett’s offense.
Former NFL wide receiver Mike Williams has died, his agent said Tuesday. He was 36.
Agent Hadley Engelhard said Williams died Tuesday morning at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tampa, Florida.
Williams had been hospitalized in intensive care after an accident at a construction site in Hillsborough County, which includes Tampa, that left him partially paralyzed. The Tampa Bay Times, citing Tierney Lyle, the mother of Williams’ 8-year-old daughter, reported he was taken off a ventilator Thursday.
Williams was from Buffalo, New York, and played nearby at Syracuse University.
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
The defense appeared “fine” without Chris Jones.
If I told you this Kansas City Chiefs defense would only allow 14 points without Chris Jones, you would have taken it in a heartbeat. The Detroit Lions were top five in points and yards per game a season ago.
At the same time, there was very little pressure applied to Jared Goff throughout the night. This defense has a much more daunting task facing Trevor Lawrence and company this week, so it’s good that Jones and the Chiefs came to an agreement to get him back in the building.
It may have been better to trade Jones at the beginning of the offseason
This is easy to say in hindsight.
One could argue Kansas City’s personnel staff should have been prepared, but nobody saw this coming. There was always this assumption deal would have been done before the season.
Perhaps the two sides come to an agreement following the 2023 season.
A tweet to make you think
AP Film Room - Chiefs Xs & Os from Week 1 https://t.co/A3rRAX1hsM— Arrowhead Pride (@ArrowheadPride) September 12, 2023