The third preseason game is usually the one where a team’s starters see the most action. If that holds this weekend, it’s fortunate for fans that the Chiefs are home on Saturday.
The 49ers are the opponent. Here’s a closer look at the game.
Kickoff: 7 p.m.
TV: KCTV (Ch. 5)
Radio: KCFX (101.1 FM)
Favorite: no line
What to watch
Assuming the Chiefs’ starters are on the field longer this week, Saturday will be a good indication of their progress on defense under new coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.
The Chiefs should be at full strength on defense, with ends Frank Clark and Alex Okafor getting their first action last weekend. Safety Tyrann Mathieu logged three plays before leaving with a shoulder injury last Saturday but could have continued playing had it been a regular-season game.
It’s still early in the process of blending a new coordinator, staff and players with returning guys in new positions. But with starters unlikely to play in the final preseason game, signs of progress should be apparent Saturday evening. The Chiefs ranked 31st against the pass, 27th against the run and 24th in points allowed last season.
This could be a week for the Chiefs to look solid. On Monday, Niners quarterback Jimmy Garappolo played for the first time since tearing an ACL at Arrowhead Stadium in Week 3 last season. He completed one of six passes for no yards and an interception.
In last season’s third preseason game at Chicago, Patrick Mahomes and the offensive starters remained on the field for the first half and the first drive of the second half. The Chiefs mustered 10 points in six possessions, not exactly a sign of things to come.
In the first two preseason games this season, Mahomes has played a total of three series with a total of 17 snaps.