Following the Chiefs’ 42-34 win over the Houston Texans on Sunday (click here for the NFL Primetime edition of the recap), KC Star beat writer Terez A. Paylor answered Twitter questions about the Chiefs’ abundance of Achilles injuries, Chris Conley’s replacement, the defensive struggles and more.
Well, I knew this was going to be a question. So, in my neverending pursuit of the clicks –– hey, I’m the corporate champ –– I asked Andy Reid directly about it. Here’s his direct quote:
“Yeah, we don’t know,” Reid said. “Throughout the league, you’re even seeing them at the college level, which is kind of unique. I don’t remember this being (like) that. At one point a few years ago, you could kinda look at the shoes, but the shoe companies, I think, have done a pretty good job of putting these things together. So I don’t know exactly why. But it does seem there are a few of these.”
For the record, I asked former NFL team doctor David Chao about this a few years ago. Here’s what he had to say:
“The main reason I think they are happening is that people are bigger, faster and stronger nowadays, and the problem is that no matter how hard you train, you can’t make your foot, ankle or Achilles’ tendon any bigger or thicker or stronger,” Chao said. “So essentially, you keep planting a bigger tree in the same-size pot.”
I think Albert Wilson and Demarcus Robinson will see an uptick in work, and Jehu Chesson will likely get a promotion to special teams. I chatted with Demarcus after the game briefly and will have a story on him in the next few days. He’s taken most of his reps at Conley’s “X” spot and is very comfortable there, and quarterback Alex Smith noted after the game that he’s very talented. Robinson strikes me as a “gamer” type who turns it on in the actual games. The injury to Conley is a shame –– he was really coming into his own as a blocker and possession receiver –– but there’s a chance Robinson fills his shoes nicely. The good news is that Smith is playing at such a high level right now, there’s a chance he can make whoever steps into that spot a better player.
It has been better but that certainly wasn’t a promising effort. The Texans ran for 6.3 yards per carry against the Chiefs, and their big downhill back, D’Onta Foreman, could have done more damage had he gotten the ball more, since the Chiefs couldn’t tackle him. This is something to keep an eye on over the next month; if the Chiefs can’t stop the run, it can submarine their championship hopes.
Boy, Deshaun Watson looked good, didn’t he? He’s elusive, has a good arm, is a gamer...I think Hunt is still the favorite for rookie of the year but Watson could overtake him if Houston makes the playoffs. It will be a fun battle the rest of the way, that’s for sure.
(And yes, I still feel good about Patrick Mahomes as my all-juice quarterback in this year’s draft. That guy was so much fun to watch in training camp)
I’d be a little less worried about the pass defense. Marcus Peters and Terrance Mitchell are gamers –– those guys are so competitive, they never lose confidence –– and Steven Nelson should be back after Week 8, which will lift the unit some. The pass rush misses Dee Ford, and will be better when he comes back, too.