Probably best to hold off for now. But it was an encouraging start. The starters played just one possession on each side of the ball and Andy Reid had to like what he saw. The possession to start the game was a thing of beauty. Alex Smith was seven for eight passing with the one incompletion coming when he unloaded the ball to avoid a sack. The Chiefs converted twice on third down on the 80-yard drive that finished with Jamaal Charles’ 1-yard touchdown run. The drive consisted of 14 plays with the long gain being just 13 yards. The Chiefs were also impressive on defense and special teams when the regulars played.
•Is Dontari Poe for real?
Again, the early returns are encouraging. Poe generated a rush on a third-down pass in the first half that forced an incompletion and made the Saints punt.
•Can the Chiefs count on Knile Davis?
Davis got off to a great start as a kickoff returner by bringing one back 79 yards in the third quarter. And he didn’t fumble on any of his five carries, so that’s a start. But he gained just seven yards. He also dropped a pass in the flat that he could have taken for a reasonable gain. Dropped passes were his biggest problem at training camp. Davis did catch the other four passes that were thrown his way.
•What was the single biggest thing to like from the game?
Dexter McCluster’s 55-yard punt return. The play set up a 42-yard Ryan Succop field goal. The Chiefs got few such plays last season. That, combined with the defense creating few turnovers, meant the offense had to drive a long field almost every time it took the field. But if the Chiefs can generate field position with long returns, it will make their offense that much more efficient.
•How did wide receivers Dwayne Bowe and Jon Baldwin fare?
Playing just the first possession, neither one had a reception, but neither one had the ball come his way. Among his eight passes, Smith threw three times to Charles, twice to Anthony Fasano and once each to McCluster, Tony Moeaki and Anthony Sherman. Smith’s priority was obviously to get the ball out of his hand quickly. So any impact Bowe and Baldwin will have to wait until next week’s game against San Francisco at Arrowhead Stadium, at the earliest.