The Kansas City Chiefs were flying high to start the season. After their impressive start, the Chiefs were thought to be different than they previously were. The offense, which was known to dink and dunk the ball down the field, seemingly found a deep passing game. Alex Smith throwing the ball down the field looked like something out of a dream. Defensively, we already knew what the Chiefs could be there with the pieces they had. And although they lost one of their leaders, safety Eric Berry, Kansas City was still getting it done defensively. The Chiefs rode the momentum to start the season 5-0 and had many talking about how they could be the best team in the NFL. Ever since then, it seems like things have fallen apart. The Chiefs now sit at 6-6 after their latest loss on the road at the New York Jets and it seems that things are not getting any better. The defense has not been that bad over their current slide but their offense has. Although the offense was good on Sunday, the Chiefs are a team that is fading fast and look to be self-destructing offensively. Fortunate for them, the Chiefs are playing in a division where no one is running away with the lead. The Broncos are playing horribly, the Raiders are inconsistent and the Chargers are the Chargers. So with that being said, the Chiefs are miraculously still in the running for the playoffs via their division, but they definitely have some work to do to make it happen and all that work has to do with their offense.
One weapon everyone was surprised by to start the season was rookie running back Kareem Hunt. The talented running back out of the University Of Toledo came out of the blocks smoking as he dominated the Patriots in his first game out. In the first five games of the season, Hunt had four 100 rushing games and had rushed and caught a combined six touchdowns. He seemed to be well on his way to winning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. Well, since that fifth game of the season, Hunt has been missing in action. Hunt has not even gone over 100 yards rushing once and he has not even gotten in the endzone. The running game not getting going for the Chiefs is a huge issue. With them not getting that going, it limits the offense the Chiefs want to run and makes them a little more one-dimensional. The more one-dimensional the Chiefs are, the easier they area to defend, so the Chiefs need to find a way to get Hunt some better opportunities. Part of that means the offensive line needs to handle business more than they have recently. While that part is key, the other part of it is Hunt running with authority and teams actually fearing the Chiefs passing game like they did to start the season.
Speaking of the Chiefs passing game, it has definitely taken a hit. They have weapons in wide receiver Tyreek Hill and tight end Travis Kelce, but like with all Andy Reid teams, they are missing something in the passing game. Throughout all the years of Reid having teams that were on the cusp of making the Super Bowl in Philly, he was always missing that one receiver that could be the quarterback's best friend. The Chiefs brought in Jeremy Maclin to be that guy last season and he was not quite what they expected. The Chiefs surprisingly cut him this offseason but the sad reality is they never replaced him. While it is good to have players that fit your system, it is always good to have that one star receiver that can get it done against anyone. Hill, for as talented as he is, cannot be that guy that can line up at wide receiver and dominate top-tier cornerbacks routinely. Kelce is a talented tight end, but it is hard for a tight end to dominate from week to week while not having a threat on the outside to take some heat off of them. So with that being said, the Chiefs need to get back to manufacturing those explosive plays. It seems like they have been inconsistent in doing so since their hot start and the offensive staff have not been able to find that magic again.
As bad as the Chiefs have been over the last few games, there is still hope for them to make the playoffs and it is all dependent on their offense. A little creativity, a little more confidence and more ways to get Hunt involved in the game could help the Chiefs capture that early-season magic once again. With the slide they are on, it will be interesting to see if they can make the necessary adjustments.