*Pre-editor post (forgive any typos)
Someone let me know when you hear or read the following criticism of Andy Reid – How can he have his greatest team ever, lead 14-0 after one quarter, have the most talented QB in football history (that might true already when you think about it), play at home with a west coast team coming to your cold/loud environment on TNF…and that team missing it’s starting #1-2 RBs, main WR (in-game), starting TE (from the preseason), top CB (Verrett lost preseason), main ILB…and you lose. How is this possible? It’s not on the players I wouldn’t think.
You can’t lose this game if your Andy Reid…not up 14-0 in the 1st quarter with this team. It’s unconscionable. Before you think I’m picking on him…he’s the head coach that lost a home playoff game last season to the freaking Titans after leading 21-3 at the half. That game/this game was classic Andy Reid…hot start, meander in the middle allowing the other team to catch up, duel to the finish in a game closer than it should be – and, in this case, they lost. Andy Reid is the Bill Belichick of the 1st quarter, and the Hue Jackson of quarters 2-3-4.
The Chiefs are lucky they’re not on a four-game losing streak right now, which is unbelievable with the offense they have.
When the Chiefs are rolling (non-crunch time)…it’s an Andy Reid love fest in the mainstream football coverage – complete with that Chernobyl Andy Reid as a kid in the punt-pass-kick competition video. When the Chiefs lose – Patrick Mahomes is a rookie and makes mistakes. National football coverage is sick in the head for NFL coaches.
Credit the Chargers, and Anthony Lynn (which pains me to write)…they played Reid like a fiddle. Slowed the pace, kept it close enough…let the Chiefs do their mid-game muddle around…and then got lucky enough to strike the right cord at the end. The Chargers had no business even being in position to win this game. Kudos to them…they pulled it off.
The two teams are tied at 11-3 with KC having the current tie-breaker edge.
KC goes to Seattle Week 16…not an easy game, and Reid craps the bed with game planning in big games. The Chiefs could very easily fall to 12-4…and end up the #1 wild card.
The Chargers don’t have it easy, but their toughest game remaining is vs. the Ravens (Week 16) and will be at home. At Denver Week 17 depends upon whether the Broncos have anything on the line.
I’m thinking KC somehow finds a way to win the AFC West, but it’s close/not obvious.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Some of us had to or wanted to use Damien Williams (10-49-2, 6-74-0/6) in this game…some benched…some had him used against them. Williams evokes a number of emotions this week…savior or devil.
What happens now? What happens if Spencer Ware is good-to-go Week 16? Ware would have had the same night had he been healthy. He will likely slide back into the lead role…but a 70-30 split, and with the risk that it hot hands against one or the other of them.
If I had to have one for Week 16, it would be Ware (assuming he’s active), but it’s going to come with risk…and you may have both but, thus, really have none. It’s now created confusion at the most critical week of the season going into Week 16.
Darrel Williams (2-19-1/2, 2-13-0) is a solid UDFA rookie but he’ll disappear to almost no snaps once Ware is back.
-- Mike Williams (7-76-2/9, 1-19-1) had a night…and, mostly, he’s been known as a devil (against you this week). He was a rare start for people…and most always against FFM’ers. What a night for him…a low-level target, third-wheel…almost TE-like player for Philip Rivers, but with Keenan Allen gone from this game early – Williams had a night.
Is this the turning point for Williams? Mmmmm, probably not. Not in 2018. Rivers will use a WR like this heavy one game…and then stiff him the following week. However, with Allen missing time, Williams will get more targets…but more attention in coverage. Facing the Ravens this week…not the time you want to draw top coverage.
Williams will be a key WR next season, when Tyrell Williams (6-71-0/12) leaves in free agency and Williams because the #2 option to Keenan. Mike is not super-talented, but he’s good…and he’ll be in a good spot for fantasy production. Mostly a WR2.5 option in 2019.
-- Justin Jackson (16-58-1, 3-27-0/4) drew the start with no Gordon-Ekeler. He paid off solidly for fantasy. My takeaway was – it was a reminder that Jackson is not a future main carry, work horse WR. He’s just a nice fill-in.
Once Gordon is back, and especially when Gordon-Ekeler back – Jackson will all but disappear.
-- Apropos of nothing…how great did Kelvin Benjamin (1-17-0/2) look in a Chiefs uniform? Maybe it was the fact that he was standing next to Tyreek Hill, so he looked like he was 9’ tall…but looked good. He’s quite a weapon to just ‘add’ this late. He’ll get used…a great #2-3 to take advantage of in the red zone. Benjamin is way better NOT as a #1.
Benjamin’s presence, and he started here (but just 12 snaps of play), will have an impact to the other receivers…
Chris Conley (2-19-0/3) becomes irrelevant. He had some heat as a Tyreek safety net…but Demarcus Robinson (2-7-1/3) would become the Tyreek fill-in, but nothing like Tyreek. Conley is stuck in his ‘guy on the field/WR4 role with Benjamin and Robinson rising up.
The odds of a red zone TD to Tyreek or Kelce or Conley take a tiny hit because KB is a great weapon to have for that.
Benjamin becomes a non-PPR sleeper Weeks 16-17…a guy who is the biggest (physically) target on a team with the best QB talent to ever play the game (better than Aaron Rodgers, we might as already call it now and move on).
-- Final notes on MYreek (Mahomes+Tyreek)…
Many of you reading this built your FF team on the backs of either/or…or both, and then just when you needed them, they came up about 30-40% short of what you’d hope/expect. They had a great season, they were the main fuel that got us this far. It’s sad that they didn’t have a monster game in the Week 15 playoff, but they didn’t put up and egg and kill…they just made our projected wins turn into 50-50 battles. OK, so now it’s time for the others to step up and pick them up.
Every week you have 1-2-3 disappointments and 1-2 guys go off and kinda get the win, in a sense. We had our 1-2 disappointments…it just so happened they happened on Thursday, which sucks/feels awful when it sticks out and sits there for 2-3 days. We got the disappointments in…which means, in the fantasy laws of balance in the universe, we have the upside guys coming up. We just have to see who they are…for some it was Damien Williams from this game.
If we lose this week, we can always replay that bomb that hit Tyreek in the face-mask over and over in our minds all offseason – it only cost the combination of MYreek 15-20+ points (depending upon your scoring system).
-- Week 16 look ahead:
Going to be tough using your Chargers against the Ravens…a Chargers team without Allen-Gordon perhaps. Not good for Rivers on down. If Lamar Jackson starts, maybe the LAC-DST has some hope.
KC goes at Seattle, and that seems ugly for the offense…but Seattle has been apt to allow passers good activity – three of the last five QBs they’ve faced have thrown for 300+, four of their last 6 too, five of their last 8 as well. Goff 2x, Rodgers, Mullens, Keenum, Stafford have dropped 300+ on them. The Mahomes-like comps -- Rodgers and Goff 2x have averaged 1.7 passing TDs per game against them this season. Seattle will try to run/run clock and that will put as much a dent as anything in the passing game upside. Mahomes should be fine but not like…‘wow’ 6 TDs!!
Snap Counts of Interest:
57 = Conley
53 = Tyreek
36 = Dem Robinson
12 = Kelvin Benjamin
44 = Dam Williams
15 = Darr Williams
39 = Dorian O’Daniel
30 = Ragland
56 = Justin Jackson
18 = Detrez Newsome