Opinion: Despite rediscovering spark, Chiefs shouldn't get too comfortable after win over Eagles

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·5 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

PHILADELPHIA – The fun returned for the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.

The razzle-dazzle. Signature creativity. All-around offensive domination that featured both a scorching aerial attack and a new-found punishing run game. You name it.

After two consecutive weeks of uncharacteristic shortcomings and back-to-back losses landed them in the unfamiliar territory that is last place in the AFC West, order seemingly was restored in the form of a 42-30 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Faced with adversity for the first time this season, the Chiefs responded exactly how a squad with championship aspirations should.

Patrick Mahomes again looked like one of the most electrifying players in the league as he racked up five touchdown passes, including three to wide receiver Tyreek Hill, who had 11 catches for 186 yards.

Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire rushed for 102 yards on 14 carries and had a turnover-free day after losing two fumbles in his previous two games. He also caught a shovel pass for a touchdown on a play designed by tight end Travis Kelce one day in practice and humorously coined “Tom and Jerry.”

Kansas City converted nine of 10 third downs for first downs and scored on six of seven possessions.

The icing on the cake: the victory represented the 100th of Andy Reid’s run with the Chiefs, and it came in the city where he spent his first 14 seasons as an NFL head coach. Reid became the first coach to ever win 100 games with two different teams.

But for all of the feel good vibes (a thunderous cheer reverberated from the visiting locker room and could be heard through closed doors in the halls at Lincoln Financial Field, and everyone from Reid to Mahomes, to Hill, Edwards-Helaire to defensive end Mike Danna, who had two sacks, conveyed both joy and relief as they addressed reporters in their post-game press conferences), the Chiefs can’t make the mistake of letting the sense of urgency that permeated team headquarters this week dissipate.

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill (10) celebrates his touchdown catch with teammates against the Philadelphia Eagles during the second quarter at Lincoln Financial Field.
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill (10) celebrates his touchdown catch with teammates against the Philadelphia Eagles during the second quarter at Lincoln Financial Field.

While It might sound crazy to portray any team that tops the 40-point mark and never punted as fortunate after a double-digit victory, the Chiefs are just that.

Mahomes and the offense may have found a long-craved balance and the cure for the slow starts that caused them to enter Sunday’s contest with the quarterback having thrown just one first-half touchdown pass while his unit got outscored by 19 in the first and second quarters the three previous weeks.

But it’s hard to truly feel like the Chiefs have regained their dominant form because their defense remains very problematic.

Reid and Mahomes credited the unit for holding the Eagles to field goals on three of Philly’s trips inside the red zone. But offensive penalties took three Jalen Hurts touchdown passes off the board on Sunday. So the Eagles held themselves in check every bit as much – if not more than – the Chiefs defense did.

Sunday represented only the second time this season the Eagles had topped the 30-point mark, the other instance coming against the lackluster Atlanta Falcons. The Eagles also became the third Kansas City opponent to generate more than 400 yards on offense this season.

Hurts, with 387 yards and two touchdowns, joined Baker Mayfield (321 passing yards), Lamar Jackson (239 passing yards and a touchdown, and 107 rushing yards and 2 TDs) and Justin Herbert (281 passing yards and four touchdowns) as the latest quarterback to have registered a prolific performance against the Chiefs this season.

And if Hurts, who on Sunday made only his eight career start, moved the ball with as effectively as he did against Kansas City’s defense, what will 2020 MVP runner-up Josh Allen do when he faces Kansas City next week?

The gifts in the form of three offensive penalties (an illegal man downfield, pass interference and illegal touching) weren’t unlike those that the Cleveland Browns offered in Week 1 as two second-half fumbles and questionable play-calling caused Cleveland to blow the lead and lose the game.

Yes, Kansas City capitalized on mistakes in both victories. But the Chiefs can’t count on charitable opponents each week.

That’s why Mahomes, who leading up to the Eagles game described his team as having its “back against the wall,” issued a reminder that the Chiefs remain far from a finished product, and he stressed the importance of a united pursuit of growth.

“It’s holding each other accountable,” he said. “As much as I hold these guys accountable, they hold me accountable to be the best Patrick Mahomes I can be every single day. When you have leaders on the team that do that – I’m making Travis Kelce the best Kelce he can be, Tyreek and Chris Jones and Tyrann Mathieu – it’ll in turn flow through the entire team.

"We haven’t dug ourselves out of the hole yet. We’re still not in first place in the AFC West, and we have to continue to build and build and win football games. I’m excited to keep that challenge going, keep that great mindset and be a great Kansas City football team.”

Hill agreed.

“We’re still missing a step,” he said. “A few guys running the wrong routes on plays, we’re not getting depth on plays, we may not be blocking the correct sometimes. I feel like after this game, we’re going to watch film ... and there’s always things to correct.”

As the first four weeks of the season have shown, the Chiefs can typically count on their prolific offense to rescue them. They looked unstoppable against the Eagles, but eventually, they’re going to need improved backing from their defense.

Follow USA TODAY Sports' Mike Jones on Twitter @ByMikeJones.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Kansas City Chiefs shouldn't get too comfortable after win vs. Eagles