Last Sunday, the Kansas City Chiefs’ defense slowed down the best statistical offensive team in the league so far this season, the Miami Dolphins. The unit led by defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo created a masterful game plan that held Miami to only 14 points, catching the eye of many critics around the league.
Former NFL defensive back and current television analyst Ryan Clark took an interest in the defense’s Week 9 performance. On the latest episode of Inside The NFL, Clark broke down two defensive plays that he felt changed the game in Kansas City’s favor.
“Let’s look at how they were able to attack Tua Tagovailoa and the Dolphins with “two safety high defenses. Here, you’re going to get a corner cat, which is a corner blitz from Jaylen Watson. He’s going to roll the safety over to number one, but they play this from a too-high look, which gives Tua Tagovailoa the feeling that he can’t push the football down the field.” Said Clark, “George Karlaftis drops right into the zone where you want to hit Tyreek Hill. It’s a hitch in the backfield, a sack. Now that’s how they bring the pressure.”
It all came from a two high shell whether it was blitz, man, or zone. It’s not easy to do,… pic.twitter.com/QxLmiADJw3
— Ryan Clark (@Realrclark25) November 8, 2023
“The way they played man-to-man. It wasn’t single high, two safety high, press. You’re going to see here they’re going to attempt to attack Trent McDuffie in the slot who, because he’s pressing, is able to get right up on Tyreek Hill,” said Clark. “you get the strip and the fumble. Now you get a pitch from (Mike) Edwards to Brian Cook.
“It’s a huge play that puts points on the board. What I love about this last play is now it’s just a straight zone. You’re not affected by the exit motion from Raheem Mostert in the backfield. It’s the hands of Willie Gay Jr. It gets Tua Tagovailoa off of his first read, and we see when he has to come off of his first read, that’s when teams have success.”
The Chiefs’ scoring on defense was the difference at the end of the game and further proved that Spagnuolo’s unit is a respected group this season. On Monday Night Football, they will have another challenge in Week 11 against the Philadelphia Eagles under the lights.