Chiefs Not Showing Everything During Preseason, Still Finding Success on Offense

The Chiefs face the Chicago Bears on Saturday in the third preseason game for both teams

The plan is to have the Kansas City Chiefs first-team offense go into the third quarter of Saturday's game against the Chicago Bears, but as head coach Andy Reid has mentioned before, things can always change. 

He's not afraid to make a change on the fly if he's seen enough from one particular group.

One thing that hasn't changed for the Chiefs offense over the first two games of the preseason is the success they've found moving the ball against two of the better defensive teams in the NFC—the Seattle Seahawks and St. Louis Rams.

With quarterback Alex Smith under center so far this preseason, the offense has scored four times in five drives, totaling 24 points with 3 touchdowns and a field goal. This includes opening-drive touchdowns in each of their first two games.

Smith has combined to go 12 of 16 for 173 yards and a touchdown, and the first-team offense has managed 204 yards of total offense on just 33 plays, which is good for an average of more than 6.1 yards per play.

The offense seems to be clicking on all cylinders, and while defenses it's facing aren't game planning, the Chiefs offense isn't either. The coaches are still holding some of their cards close to the vest, as co-offensive coordinator Brad Childress explained on Wednesday afternoon.

"We're really cognizant of what we put in at training camp and what we're holding on to, and really not putting out there—saving it for the real time," Childress explained of the offense this preseason.

It's a good sign that they're finding success with the plays that they're calling during these games—that's exactly what you want to see—but they still need to mix it up each week to get into the rhythm they'll go through when the regular season arrives in just a couple of weeks.

"You try to make some adjustments because that's part of the training that you want to go through so they can communicate and be able to do it," Bob Sutton, the defensive coordinator for the Chiefs, explained on Wednesday. "We still want them to have to adjust. We still want to add things for different games so they have to go through the whole, 'This is how we'll do it during game week.'

"We're not in game plan mode, I don't think anybody is, but you want the process of understanding how we install a plan. Now they might be the same exact calls as last week in that this is what we do in long-yardage, short-yardage, etc.—that's a big part of it, but you want them on the field to have to make some of those checks or adjustments."

Photos from the Chiefs second preseason game against the Los Angeles Rams

Sutton said you can't properly evaluate a player without seeing how they handle adjustments on the fly, which is why they'll do some of that during games, although to a much lesser extent than the regular season when there's a game plan involved.

"You can't play the game like that, and that affects some people," Sutton added. "Some can't play as fast when they have to do that, and you want to know that, because in two weeks, there are going to be some adjustments."

Sutton explained that evaluating the players on the field is the most important thing happening right now, as the team gets closer to the two roster-cut down dates, the first of which comes on Tuesday, August 30, when the roster must be cut to 75 players.

Then, on Saturday, September 3, the roster must be down to 53 players by 3:00 p.m. CT.

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