Week 3 of the NFL regular season opens Thursday, September 19th as Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid returns to Philadelphia for the first time since being let go last offseason. Reid, who spent 14 seasons as head coach of the Eagles, has had little to say in regards to his Philadelphia homecoming in hopes to focus strictly on the game itself.
“I want to make sure that I concentrate on the game at hand and that’s anything else it becomes a distraction and I’m not going to allow that to happen,” said Reid on Monday.
Philadelphia’s new head coach Chip Kelly addressed his team on Monday to talk about Reid’s first visit back.
“I think they’re locked in,” said Kelly. “We met today and we talked about the Kansas City Chiefs, so that’s not a concern.”
For Eagles fans the most concerning aspect heading into the matchup against the Chiefs isn’t the return of Andy Reid, but Chip Kelly’s late game management. Kelly is in his first year as a head coach in the NFL, and undoubtedly is going to make mistakes like all coaches do. However during last week’s game against the San Diego Chargers, Kelly’s time management turned out to be the difference in the game. Kelly owned up to his mistakes and recognizes that there is a learning curve to becoming an NFL head coach.
“No one coaches a perfect game, no one plays a perfect game,” said Kelly. “But you have to learn from those mistakes and make sure they don’t happen again.”
Keys to the Game: Eagles Offense vs. Chiefs Defense
For the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles, Thursday night’s game is going to come down to one thing, whose good is better?
The Kansas City Chiefs defense has allowed only 9.0 points a game, and a measly 54.0 rushing yards a game, which ranks them second in the league in both categories. On the other side of the ball the Philadelphia Eagles host one of the leagues most potent offenses through two games. The Eagles are averaging 31.5 points a game and 954 yards a game, good for third and second in the NFL, respectively.
Thus far, the Chiefs have held running backs Maurice Jones-Drew and Demarco Murray to a combined 70 yards on 27 attempts. Eagles running back LeSean McCoy ran for 184 yards off of 31 attempts in the opener against Washington, but I’m expecting numbers similar to his game against the Chargers where he had 53 yards on 11 attempts. A potential weak spot for the Chiefs defense this week is going to be LeSean McCoy catching passes out of the backfield, which could end up being the Chiefs Achilles heel this Thursday.
Keys to the Game: Chiefs Offense vs. Eagles Defense
Veteran signal caller, Alex Smith, whom the Chiefs acquired during the offseason from San Francisco, leads the Chiefs offense this year. To this point Smith has successfully filled the role of game manager, completing 60% of his passes with four touchdowns and zero interceptions.
The Philadelphia Eagles defense has allowed the 3rd most yards in the NFL during their two games this season and will be looking to rebound from their poor game against the Chargers where they allowed a total of 519 yards. In two games the Eagles defense has forced 5 turnovers, tied for 7th most in the league.
This weeks Chiefs-Eagles matchup will be interesting to watch as the dangerous Philadelphia offense hopes to continue their success against a stingy Kansas City defense. In the end it will come down to if the Chiefs defense can make stops to slow down the lightning quick paced Philadelphia offense. The teams only have 3 days rest and if the Chiefs defense can’t get off the field, the tempo of the Philadelphia offense will prove to be too much.
Chiefs 20, Eagles 27
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