KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The preseason for the Kansas City Chiefs and the Green Bay Packers is officially over.
In their final exhibition match before the regular season, the Chiefs came out of Arrowhead Stadium with a 17-10 win.
While Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce and a few others starters for the Chiefs did not play, the ones that did gave a small preview of what may come this season.
Here are a few quick takeaways.
Backup defense needs some development
In the first two preseason games, the defensive backups and bubble players made splashes against weaker offenses in Washington and Chicago. That was not the case against one of the better backup quarterbacks in the NFL in Love.
He led an 11-play touchdown drive and a 13-play field goal drive in the second quarter with a mix of run and pass featuring running back Tyler Goodson and wide receiver Amari Rodgers.
The Chiefs’ lack of run defense could be highlighted by interior defensive linemen Tershawn Wharton and Khalen Saunders. Both are lauded for their pass-rushing and showing that their run-stopping is not as great as their pass-rushing skills.
Also explains why the Chiefs brought in Danny Shelton to rotate in on run downs.
Veteran linebacker Jermaine Carter also got some attention for getting blocked on Goodson’s touchdown run.
Cornerback Joshua Williams was flagged for a second game in a row for a facemask and also had some lapses in coverage.
In the grand scheme, the backup defense performing poorly is not a major issue but it is concerning when players that are expected to rotate in are getting roughed up by another team’s second-string offense.
Matt Bushman making a case for an active roster spot
The star of the night was tight end Matt Bushman who saw some increased reps with Blake Bell out.
He caught two touchdown passes including one wide open one for 54 yards from Shane Buechele.
Head coach Andy Reid has said that Blake Bell will be out for an extended period of time. If the Chiefs want to carry four tight ends on the active roster or just keep a tight end on the practice squad, Bushman may have the offensive and special teams prowess to do it.
Running back room in flux
The Chiefs ran for over 100 yards against the Pakcers but the stats don’t tell the story in the preseason.
With Derrick Gore on injured reserve, the running back room looks to be a mix of Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Jerick McKinnon and Isiah Pacheco with Ronald Jones on the roster bubble.
Pacheco and Jones took a bulk of the carries in the game but it’s still yet to be seen how the rotation will work during the regular season.
The Chiefs will run their mix of outside zone, counter and power but who will be the primary ballcarrier will be revealed in Week 1.
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