Chiefs Look for Win on the RoadOctober 15th, 2009 by Lee Eldridge
The Chiefs 0-5 travel to Washington to face the Redskins 2-3. Not particularly a confrontation of titans. What are the odds that an NFL team could face winless opponents fives weeks in a row? Well that’s exactly how the schedule has shaken out for the Redskins. After losing to the Giants in the opening week of the season, they’ve played winless teams each of the last four weeks with St. Louis, Detroit, Tampa Bay and Carolina (winless at the time the Redskins played them). The Redskins split these four games. And now face the winless Chiefs.
The Redskins’ five opponents have a combined record of 7-17. In comparison, the Chiefs’ five opponents have a combined record of 15-9.
The Chiefs are bad. The Redskins might be worse. Clinton Portis has called out the Redskins. And the team seems to be falling apart. Check out this post from ESPN.com.
Given the level of competition played, it makes it very difficult to compare the stats among these two teams. The Redskins rank better than the Chiefs in most categories, but I would feel confident in saying that if the Chiefs had played St. Louis, Detroit, Tampa Bay and Carolina that their stats would be better than they are today.
The offensive line continues to play poorly. And starting left tackle Branden Albert could miss the Redskins game. Against the Cowboys the Chiefs had no rushing attack, and Cassel was pounded repeatedly in the passing game. The Redskins have very cornerbacks, but have been vulnerable against the run, giving up nearly 120 yards per game. The Chiefs must find a way to get their running game untracked. I’m not sure why they aren’t looking for a few more opportunities to infuse runningback Jamaal Charles into the offense. Larry Johnson needs a hole at the line of scrimmage. At least Charles might be able to make somebody miss. I was very impressed with Cassel’s poise at the end of the Cowboys game. It was the best he’s looked all season.
The two long pass plays for touchdowns that the Chiefs gave up to Cowboy’s receiver Miles Austin were frustrating. On both plays, nickel back Maurice Leggett jumped in front of the receiver to knock down the pass instead of making the tackle. On both plays he missed and gave up long touchdowns. The Chiefs have been rotating rookie CB Donald Washington in that nickel spot, but Washington can’t stay with NFL receivers yet. It’s also become obvious that safety Mike Brown has lost his speed. The secondary has not been as good as we had hoped. And the front seven are still not getting enough pressure on the quarterback. The Redskins will be playing without their starting left tackle Chris Samuels.
I’m tempted to pick the Chiefs here, but just can’t do it. If the game was in Kansas City, I’d take the Chiefs. I do think they’re going to find some wins in these next few games. They’ve completed by far the toughest patch in their schedule. The Chiefs’ next four opponents are the Redskins, Chargers, Jaguars and Raiders, who have a combined record of 7-12. I think they’ll take two of the four. Just hard to predict which two.
Redskins 20, Chiefs 17