Chiefs DB Tyrann Mathieu talks strategy for thwarting Raiders QB Derek Carr

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Ed Easton Jr.
·3 min read
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The Kansas City Chiefs have been a juggernaut in all phases of the game since losing their only game this season in Week 5 against the Las Vegas Raiders. The defense has been incredibly stingy since giving up 40 points on that day and seek retribution heading into this Sunday night’s rematch in Las Vegas.

Chiefs All-Pro safety Tyrann Mathieu is a leader in the secondary and took it especially hard after the poor performance in Week 5. He spoke about the defense’s strategy to slow down Raiders quarterback Derek Carr in Week 11 during Thursday’s press conference.

”Well, I thought he played a great game,” Mathieu said of Carr. “I thought he got to the line of scrimmage, he was patient, he was calm, got his team in the right place, and he was able to really be effective. I think even watching film of him really the last couple weeks, that’s what we’re really going to have to focus on, is how can we disrupt him in the pocket, how can we get him to move his feet, how can our big guys up front really impact the game. And then on the back end, how can we stop those big shots that they love to take.”

The deep passing game really hurt the Chiefs in the first matchup, so they’ll need to improve this time around. Mathieu has also noticed that the quarterback and play-caller for the Raiders are very in-sync.

“I think Jon Gruden and Derek Carr, they’ve really been working well together, and you can kind of see that on tape,” Mathieu said. “So, it’s going to be very important for us to really home in on him from the very first play, to mix up different disguises, to not give him the easy way out, to really make him work from down to down.”

The Raiders’ Week 5 victory lap around Arrowhead Stadium has been a recurrent topic this week. Mathieu wasn’t concerned with the bulletin board material and like the rest of the team, he was more focused on the impact this game will have on the divisional standings.

“Well I think for me, I think all these games are important,” Mathieu said. “This is the NFL and I think you have to try your best to win each and every week. I think division games are even more important, so I don’t think there’s any speech that needs to be made or even if the other team happens to give you some bulletin board material, it’s like ok this is still a division game. It’s still a big game no matter what happened last time so I think that’s really our focus right is how can we just play our best game, how can we be the best version of the Chiefs?”

The Chiefs are facing a dangerous Raiders team looking to build on their hot start to the season. A sweep of Kansas City could go a long way to proving they’re “back.” But Mathieu and the rest of the defense have a score to settle, so expect a physical matchup that comes down to the wire.

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