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Chiefs vs. Raiders: Alex Smith Postgame Reaction

Alex Smith Addresses the media following the Chiefs Week 15 matchup against the Raiders

Why did the down field game work today?"Combination of things, coach putting together a great game plan and then calling it and kind of setting them up. I thought I did a good job leading some guys with some underneath stuff and then hitting them over the top and then guys making plays, making plays downfield." 

How good can you guys be if you guys can keep that up?"I mean the key is to do it when they're there. They are built within the play call. When you get presented the opportunity, you're certainly not back there trying to force a bunch of deep balls. You've got to let them come. I thought we did a good job of that today. Stayed aggressive all day with the play calling and I think the offensive line played great then those guys making plays downfield."

Can you talk about De'Anthony Thomas and his dimensions not only on the returns. "He's that guy that every time that he touches the ball everybody's kind of holding their breath, in a good way. Got that kind of play-making ability. Any time he's on the field, I think the defense recognizes that as well. He can do a lot moving him around and doing different things with him. He adds another dimension for sure."

That return happened when you all were having a hard time moving the ball. How big was that? "It was nice. I think it really kick started our momentum that we finally got going, got us on the scoreboard. Felt like we were moving it well and executing. Penalties kind of hurt us there early. Couldn't find a way to execute and keep that rhythm going."

Coming off of three losses, what was the biggest difference this week? "It's a lot of things. Certainly I think scoring points, executing and defense played lights out today. Special teams making plays as well as giving us good field position and then when we got our opportunities down there, (we) made the most of them."

Given the last couple of weeks, how has your offensive line protection been? How would you compare today to the past weeks? "I thought those guys played great today. They played really, really solid. It's an aggressive defense up front and those guys, when asked, I thought played really well. It starts up front with those guys for sure."

With that protection, does it allow you to do more? "Yeah, oh for sure. Those moments when you can hold on to the ball a little bit longer to take a shot. Absolutely, yeah."

You guys showed a deep run that we haven't seen in a while. Is that an example of giving you that look and you were able to take advantage of it? "Oh for sure, yeah. You're stretching the field in a lot of different ways and the way it came out. I think it was Travis (Kelce) pulling the safety over and then them jumping on Dwayne (Bowe) on the deep cross and then the one on one outside and Albert (Wilson) making the play, beating his man and making the play downfield."

How important is it for you guys to show that you can do that? "You have to be. If they're going to challenge you like that and set and squat, you have to be able to show them you'll do it. You have to be effective down there."

Dwayne Bowe, Jason Avant and Albert Wilson all complement each other. Is that a promising group? "I think in general today. I thought we spread the ball around really well. I think we had like 10 guys with catches. Any time you have that you're tough to defend."

It was 10-6, you were one for six on third downs, missed field goals, dropped passes and penalties. Was your stomach churning a little bit when they made it 10-6? "I think everybody was confident. I certainly think we looked at it, especially offensively; there were a lot of self-inflicted things. Then, when we weren't doing that we were moving the ball and felt good about our game plan to stay with it. A little bit of it though. You only get so many opportunities and I think guys understood that. You don't want to let a team hang around and give them hope. That drive there, it kind of separated it. It was crucial for sure."

Talk about Knile Davis and that five-yard throw that turned into a 70-yard touchdown. "It was that point in the game. They were rolling the dice and bringing pressure. It was third down. They were trying to get the ball back. They bring in exotic pressure. I thought Knile made a great play. It was great. That's what happens with a defense like that and that kind of mentality in that situation. Knile made a great play."   

A couple of guys have mentioned Andy Reid talking about playing with your personality. What does that mean? "It was kind of the focus all week of us really kind of, I think, cutting it loose. Going out there and playing for each other, enjoying the preparation, enjoying today on Sunday and guys playing for each other and kind of letting, he always talks about that, kind of letting your emotions show and I thought guys did a great job of that all week especially today." Looking at the last few weeks, there has been more downfield receivers and bigger plays. How much of that stuff is on you guys to assert effort to do that and how much of that is the defensive looks they are giving you? "It's both. Yeah for sure. There were times, I think, even last week, there were a couple of times where I tried to pull the trigger, but you want to be stretching the field all the time, high-low. Then when they do present themselves, you want to be able to take advantage of it. Certainly a combination of both those things, staying aggressive with what they're playing against us."

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