I cannot believe that the Kansas City Chiefs lost this game and I’m also delighted the Kansas City Chiefs lost this game.
If you’re a big-time team, you cannot take a 30-21 lead into the 4th-quarter with a team who has lost their starting RB to an in-game ejection, and to a defense that has been one of the worst this season…and has a heretofore struggling offense. Instead, the Chiefs went dark getting the ball to Tyreek Hill…did the tried and true ‘sit on the lead’ thing that Oakland was overprepared for stopping Kareem Hunt all 2nd-half…and the Chiefs allowed a bad offense/team to outscore them 10-0 in the 4th-quarter.
This KC collapse doesn’t make them a ‘bad’ team…just confirms they are not a great team. They are as randomly good as any other top NFL team. In the past four weeks, they’ve been outplayed by the Steelers, Raiders, and Redskins and almost got caught sleeping in the 4th-quarter by Houston. KC is a very ‘B’ team…not an ‘A’ team…and their ‘big’ New England win to start the year doesn’t look all that impressive after six weeks of watching the Patriots play toe-to-toe with the Jets.
KC’s tumble means the AFC is up for grabs, which is fun to watch unfold…and it means KC might have to consider more Tyreek Hill in games/won’t be able to sit on leads.
Does anyone want to be the best team in football?
This was a major loss for KC…a game they should’ve won. The door just got kicked open for the Pittsburgh Steelers to be the #1 seed in the AFC due to this outcome. If KC-PIT tie for best record in the regular-season, obviously the Steelers have the tie-breaker. This KC loss unwittingly opened the door to the Steelers as the AFC Super Bowl representative – and it gives the Jacksonville Jaguars an edge ahead if they can get to 10-11 wins since they beat the Steelers. Remember – Pittsburgh plays in the worst division in the NFL. The Steelers may not face a team with a winning record until Week 15 hosting New England. The Steelers are going to win 10-11+ games.
And then there’s the Raiders…
After Week 2, I wrote the following lead-in to the Raiders-Jets recap:
I would add this additional game commentary: In what universe does Marshawn Lynch get to dance like a fool on the sidelines mid-game of a blowout? The ultimate disrespect to the opponents… and the fans of the opponents. In what universe have you ever seen NFL coaches let the players act a fool like that on the sidelines… hamming it up for the fans.
You probably had one or two reactions to this…
1) You're disgusted/dismissive as 'stupid'.
2) You thought, “Good, the NFL needs to allow more fun and individuality.”
Neither feeling is wrong.
I'm just shocked a league that has a stick up its bum about most everything, and I mean the over-controlling coaches would just smile at this. I think it's the day Jack Del Rio jumped the shark. The day where coaches that preach team, dedication, hard work, focus and whatever other crap… in this case the coach just smiled… a.k.a complicit… a.k.a Marshawn Lynch does whatever he wants whenever he wants and no one has the will to stop him otherwise. If you wonder why teams shy from Kaepernick-Tebow-Manziel… it's for this reason. The bosses do not want to lose control of their power over the team for a hyper-media focused entity.
The funny thing is... the star players are more important than the head coach in 99 of 100 cases. Yet we have an unwritten NFL code that allows the coaches to be generals with whistles cracking the whip over the players who play along with hierarchy to get playing time/touches. How many players have been in a Mike Shanahan or Mike Zimmer dog house?
Marshawn Lynch has plenty of money—and is doing you a favor by playing—so he doesn’t really care about the games per se. He is building his brand on Oakland's dime and airwaves. It is brilliant by Lynch, but it's going to come back to bite the Raiders' franchise in the end. Players don’t all realize Lynch can do this because the coach has zero leverage over him. Some players are now going to want to join Lynch in the spotlight and do the same...but without the same leverage.
Then there are other players who won't join Lynch. Other players who have an old school mentality. They don’t want to be dancing a fool on the sidelines… nor do they want their teammates doing the same. The guy they probably already don’t care for due to him eating a banana sitting on his ass during the national anthem… that guy is now dancing like an idiot mid-game. That's not how things are done in the old school.
Serious players are not going to want to join this organization. Fun-loving, play-to-the-camera players will. It seems like a harmless thing but Jack Del Rio broke the fourth wall of coaching and unwittingly handed the power over to Marshawn Lynch who could absolutely care less about wins and losses. He's a free spirit having fun and getting attention and has plenty of money so you can’t say a word because he'll just quit. Oakland welcomed this distraction when they signed him. Raiders fans think it's cool to be the rebels of the NFL again. You watch: This will bite them in the end.
This is going to have ripple effects… and the ripples are just beginning.
Since that game, the Raiders lost four in-a-row (streak halted with this win), and bit by bit word is leaking that the Raiders have a locker room issue ready to explode. In this game, we got Marshawn Lynch running onto a field and manhandling a referee and Michael Crabtree having to be separated from a teammate while scrapping on the sideline. Sounds like everything is fine. Nothing a good ‘ol fashioned win like this won’t take care of.
The Raiders have one chance to save their season, the current state of their franchise, and maybe the coach’s and GM’s job – release Marshawn Lynch. Not so much for the act itself of putting hands on a ref but more to take control back of the team…which they abdicated to him weeks ago. If they allow Lynch to stay on this team as ineffective and attention-seeking as he has been – it would be a clear sign of awful management and this team will implode. This one win won’t cure it. Jack Del Rio is an empty tracksuit if he doesn’t make this decision.
I don’t think he will. As I’ve said – Lynch runs this team. Del Rio is scared of him and the GM thinks he’s a genius for getting Lynch to come to Oakland.
Lynch is the genius. He has been ‘playing’ the Raiders and has since day one. He’s taking their money and getting to build his brand. Sitting down during the National Anthem and eating a banana – it’s how you get ahead in the media. I’m sure he believes in his cause but for your voice to be heard/face to be seen you need to be a protester…and there are a lot of protesters -- so you need to be a really loud, recognizable voice. There’s money in being the face of protesting political things outside of football…especially if you want to get into movie making and music producing. Lynch is grabbing the mantle of football ‘Public Enemy #1’ from Colin Kaepernick. It’s subtly brilliant.
Think about it… Why would Lynch run onto the field and do what he did to get ejected? Is he dumb? He is not. Is he emotional? Not so much he runs all the way over from the sidelines. I think it was a very calculated move in some respect and a show of his rebellion to push back a referee daring to touch him. Lynch gets to grab the headlines. Further his ‘dissenter’, ‘not taking crap’ persona…rebelling against authority. He also gets to leave the field and not play anymore (which I don’t think he cares to play anymore anyway). He gets to be discussed for 2-3 weeks during whatever league suspension he gets. He’ll be a spotlight when he returns. Again, sly like a fox he is.
He’ll do something like this again, ahead…some other attention-getting event.
He’ll do all this while the media excuses it. He’ll do all this while the management turns a blind eye.
Like most things, wherever the media is -- the rest of world mostly isn’t. Lynch will be untouchable because he pushes what the media wants – drama and their side of the political argument. Management will cower to media pressure. But the everyday people that abhor the media see this totally differently…they’re just not allowed to speak up because the media and other wild dissenters will bully them. The silent protest begins against Lynch (and the locker room issues) and the Raiders – as the Raiders become attractive to the undisciplined because they will not be disciplined in Oakland…they can run amok. Nose-to-the-grindstone players will evacuate and avoid Oakland.
The ripple effects of Marshawn Lynch on the Raiders’ future has only just begun and hasn’t had its full torpedoing yet.
This Oakland win fixes nothing…it’s a band-aid…it’s medication masking the pain not fixing it. The Raiders can fix this in one fell swoop by cutting Lynch. If I know the NFL – the Raiders won’t. And then it’s only going to get wackier from here.
I cannot wait to hear Jack Del Rio spin this situation for Lynch.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Did a play happen in the 1st-quarter that wasn’t for/to Kareem Hunt (18-87-0, 4-30-0/4)? If only the Chiefs had other weapons to use? So sad they only have Hunt.
Again, Hunt is very good…but you see the fade back to reality. He popped a 34-yard run in this game and had 53 yards rushing on his other 17 carries (3.1 ypc). Some of that is Hunt returning to a normal RB performance. Some of that is the other team has a pretty good idea that Hunt is getting the ball. 23 rushing attempts for KC and 25 completed passes…48 ball-in-hands events and Hunt had 22 of them – nearly 50% of the touches.
Last four weeks for Hunt: 77 carries, 316 rushing yards, 4.1 ypc, 0 TDs…solid numbers but nothing special.
I’m not pointing this out to crucify him…I’m a fan of his talents. What I don’t like is when rookies have 2-3 explosion games for various circumstances and everyone runs off a cliff proclaiming them the greatest thing they’ve ever seen when they’re really not. Hunt’s very good, not great/not elite.
4-5 weeks ago you could have traded him in fantasy and gotten whatever you wanted.
-- Nothing like watching a KC game hyper-focused on Tyreek Hill (6-125-1/8, 2-7-0)! I should say there’s nothing like the pain of watching him not see a touch for 2-3 series and have texts and emails flooding in about how it’s time to give up on Tyreek and how I’ve out-thought myself on him, etc.
…then his typical long TD, and radio silence…everyone is celebrating and all is cured.
Three Tyreek thoughts from this game…
1: If Tyreek isn’t working for you (the top 12 FF WR in PPG after this week)…what WR exactly would you want instead? If you can trade Tyreek for Antonio in redraft be my guest. You have my blessing.
Julio Jones? Not even in the top 25 for WRs this season.
Mike Evans? He hasn’t had a 100+ yard game in his past 10 games! Tyreek has two 100+ efforts this season. Evans has 5 TDs in his last 10 games, Tyreek has 7 TDs in that same span.
Jordy or Davante with no Rodgers?
Will Fuller? Stefon Diggs? You think they keep it up?
DeAndre Hopkins? I wouldn’t.
A.J. Green? Maybe. But not for me.
Brandin Cooks? You have the same unfounded complaints.
Michael Thomas? Come on.
Larry Fitzgerald? I don’t think so.
2: You watch Tyreek in games like last night on TNF – nothing, nothing, nothing, BAM! That’s how he rolls. I’d like him to get more touches to roll more but it is what it is. He doesn’t need 15+ targets a game to be relevant like Jarvis Landry or Keenan Allen do.
Just enjoy him for what he is.
And know there may be more to come.
You love him too much to be objective. He can’t score on every play…well, he can but they don’t give him the ball.
3: Have you noticed how good a WR Hill has become? He’s caught 73.4% of his targets and some targets he’s caught near the sidelines but out of bounds. He really hasn’t dropped or a butchered anything working as a pure WR. He had some big catches in spots last night – leaping grabs with guys on his back. The sideline catch where he got crushed after the catch…but held on. He’s really, really good…and only getting better.
-- Tyreek makes me think of Cordarrelle Patterson (1-9-0/3), and the ruination the NFL has brought to CP’s career.
What I published a few days ago from Week 6…
— I hate typing words about Cordarrelle Patterson (3-55-1, 1-5-0/1) because I know exactly what’s going to happen…nothing.
Credit to Oakland for putting him in the backfield as a regular running back. Amazing what happens when Patterson gets the ball as an RB – he scores a TD about every 5–6 carries.
2017: 10 carries, 2 TDs…1 TD every 5.0 carries
NFL career: 41 carries, 6 TDs…1 TD every 6.8 carries.
His one college season in the SEC: 25 carries, 5 TDs…1 TD every 5.0 carries.
Does anyone on planet earth/the NFL want to start a game plan with making sure Patterson got at least 7 carries in every game? No? Just me?
How many carries did Patterson have in this game? Zero.
How many catches? One…and it was brilliant, too.
He did make a sensational special team tackle on a Tyreek punt return attempt.
FYI, Seth Roberts…1 catch on 6 targets in this game.
The NFL will never change on ignoring the obvious and successful things around it…not in my lifetime…
-- Tony Romo, who I like a lot but is crossing over into a little full of himself all of a sudden, but he’s still better than everyone else…tried to enshrine Demarcus Robinson (5-69-0/8) into the Hall of Fame at a certain point last night. He also gave him the vaunted, “They really like this kid!” yeah, that’s why he’s been on the bench…so much love they don’t want him on the field.
Robinson is OK, but Kansas City non-Tyreek WRs do not matter for FF. There is no consistency in this passing game. The game plan is Hunt-Hunt-Kelce-Hunt-Hunt-Kelce-Hunt-Hill-Hunt-Hunt-Hunt-Kelce-Hunt-Hunt-Hill-rando WR-Hunt-Hunt-Hunt-Kelce.
Don’t chase Robinson looking for any FF WR help.
-- Derek Carr (29-52 for 417 yards, 3 TD/0 INT) snapped out of his funk in this game with a major stat outburst. As did M.I.A. Amari Cooper (11-210-2/19), with a monster effort.
After several weak/poor performances, these two suddenly explode. I don’t know that I believe all is well, but it was probably only a matter of time for Cooper. I don’t know that one huge game of heavy throwing erases several weeks of issues…but it has all of our attention.
Amari got three games worth of targets so he should have a big game. Does he get 19 targets next week?
This more speaks to me that the Chiefs pass defense just is not worthy of team heading to the Super Bowl. The Chiefs have a lot of issues getting exposed the last few weeks but because they started 5-0, all is forgiven/ignored. Another two losses, like I think might be coming to DEN-DAL…then we’ll see some nice panic.
The Chiefs could fall to 5-4, but their schedule allows them to then go on a BYE and then win 5-6-7 in-a-row to finish the season. They’re going to be 10+ wins and a playoff team for sure.
-- Had KC held on to win this game, Alex Smith (25-36 for 342 yards, 3 TDs/0 INT) should’ve been #1 contender for the league MVP after Week 7.
15 TDs/0 INTs this season with a 72.4% completion rate. I didn’t believe strong enough in him as an FF pickup early on because we’ve seen him spike early before and fall off in the luxurious Andy Reid offense, but not so this year. Good for him. He deserves accolades after a decade of media assault.
He won’t get it but he deserves it.
-- Chiefs CB Terrance Mitchell (7 tackles, 1 PD) keeps getting picked on opposite Marcus Peters…but that works for IDP. He has 7.5 tackles per game the past two weeks and he got his league-leading 10th PD last night.
-- If you take out the E.J. Manuel game in Week 5, Jared Cook (6-107-0/7) has averaged 4.2 catches, 50.3 yards, and 0.17 TDs per game this season…a fringe TE1 hopeful among a bunch of similar fringe TE1 hopefuls.
-- Daniel Sorensen (9 tackles, 2 TFL, 1 PD) has averaged 7.7 tackles, 1.0 TFL, 0.67 PDs per game the past three weeks. That guy deserves to be in the Pro Bowl. He should’ve been starting years ago.
Snap Counts of Interest...
72 = Seth Roberts
18 = C. Patterson
26 = Richard
25 = D. Washington
61 = Demarcus Robinson
40 = Tyreek
33 = Albert Wilson