After star rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire injured his leg and hip during the game, fans are wondering how healthy he will be come playoff time.
“Clyde got twisted up in the splits. The X-rays are negative, but we’ll evaluate him as we go,” stated head coach Andy Reid following Sunday’s game. As far as the running back position is concerned, fans should expect to see Le’Veon Bell, Darrell Williams and Darwin Thompson step up their game like they did when the Chiefs lost Kareem Hunt back in 2018.
Quarterback Patrick Mahomes seems confident in the run game with Bell and company going forward. “He’s been making plays (Bell) when he’s been in the football game. Obviously, we’re hoping Clyde gets back quickly, but I think we have good guys in that running back room that will step up and really embrace that role.”
Going into Sunday’s game Chiefs fans were uncertain just who would be playing at both offensive tackle positions. Starting right tackle Mitchell Schwartz has been out with a back injury since week 6 against Buffalo, and it seems that the coaching staff is in no position to rush his recovery, which is a smart move. The problem was that Schwartz’s back up, tackle Mike Remmers, was also facing a back injury and left tackle Eric Fisher was dealing with a stiff back as well.
Uncertain as to what the coaching staff had planned, many believed the Chiefs would be deploying the backups to the backups. It was not looking good because an undrafted free agent from Missouri, Yasir Durant, would have had a tough assignment blocking one of the premiere defensive ends in the NFL, Cameron Jordan. The Chiefs decided to roll with experience, shifting right guard Andrew Wylie to right tackle and starting guard Stefan Wisniewski, who was picked up on waivers from Pittsburgh. Wisniewski was a starter in last season’s Super Bowl victory. Going forward fans should expect to see a healthier offensive line and improvements made as we approach the postseason.
The key players of the game:
- Quarterback, Patrick Mahomes: 26//47, 254 yards, 3 touchdowns, 7 rushes, 37 yards
- Tight End, Travis Kelce: 8 receptions, 68 yards, 1 touchdown
- Wide Receiver, Tyreek Hill: 6 receptions, 53 yards, 1 touchdown *& tied WR Dwayne Bowe for most receiving touchdowns in Chiefs history (15 TD’s)
- Cornerback, L’Jarius Sneed: 1 tackle, 1 sack, 1 interception
- Linebacker, Ben Niemann: 5 tackles (led the team)
As for the next two games (vs Atlanta & vs LA Chargers) it is essential that both the offensive line and defensive pass-rush improve. The Chiefs have not had the healthiest offensive line this season, but they refuse to let it set them back and have won nine games in a row. Many believe that both the Kansas City Chiefs and the New Orleans Saints will play each other in Tampa Bay for the Super Bowl. I believe the Saints have the defense to get there, and it will be interesting to see if this does end up being quarterback Drew Brees’s last season. Can New Orleans go on a deep playoff run like the 2015 Denver Broncos, where quarterback Peyton Manning went out a Super Bowl Champion? By playoff time both teams should be fully healthy.
If they do meet again, I believe the game will be much closer. If the Chiefs end up facing the Saints in the Super Bowl, I expect another Chiefs victory. At this moment no one can beat the Chiefs but themselves, and if they continue playing the way they have been, they will repeat as Super Bowl champions. So, rejoice and be grateful for the Kansas City Chiefs and have a happy holiday season, south KC!