Chiefs’ Slow Start

After a 2019 Super Bowl win, everyone thought the Chiefs were the next big dynasty in sports. In the next offseason, they extended their star 24-year-old quarterback, Patrick Mahomes to a 10-year, $502 million deal, making him the highest-paid player in all of the American sports. The following year, after adding even more weapons and a better defense, they were the early Super Bowl favorites. They finished with a 14-2 record, the best record in football, and Mahomes finished second in MVP voting. 

The Chiefs then stormed through the playoffs with incredible play from their offense, leading them to face the greatest football player of all time, Tom Brady, and a stacked Buccaneers roster. With a broken down offensive line and a tough front seven from the Buccaneers, Mahomes was pressured all game and this led directly to a 31-9 Buccaneers win. 

It was obvious what was needed to fix the Chiefs team: restructure the offensive line, and strengthen defense. In the offseason, the Chief’s first big move was releasing both of their offensive tackles, Eric Fischer and Mitchell Schwartz, who have some pro bowls under their belts. They signed offensive guards Joe Thuney and brought Kyle Long out of retirement to play for them. Next, they traded a couple of drafts picks for defensive tackle Jarran Reed from the Seahawks. With the offseason coming to an end, they made their biggest trade getting young offensive tackle Orlando Brown from the Ravens.

With the start of Mahomes’ fourth season as a starter, the Chiefs had massive expectations. They played a good Cleveland Browns’ team in Week One in which they snuck out a win 33-29 but gave up a whopping 457 total yards which were just a sneak peek at how awful this defense would be. Week Two they faced the Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football and lost a nail biter 36-35, but again gave up 481 yards. Now 1-1, the Chiefs played the Chargers and lost their second game in a row with a 24-30 loss. Their defense finally played a little better, but with four turnovers, the Chiefs lost. Now, in Week Four, they played the Eagles which should have been an easier game, and they did win 42-30 but still gave up 461 to an average offense. Week 5 was an AFC Championship rematch against the Bills where they were never in the game and lost 20-38, moving their record down to 2-3. 

Each week the common denominator has been the defense and the turnovers. The offense is as prolific as ever, putting up 400-plus yards almost every game, but with the awful defense, they seem to have no chance to return to the Super Bowl. Even when the defense has forced some stops, the offense has been turnover heavy and, even though they scored a lot of points, they are still losing games. But with the sheer abundance of talent they have, and the best quarterback in the league, they have hopes for a better rest of the season.