How and Why the Kansas City Chiefs Could be the Surprise Team in the AFC in 2013

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Kansas City. A place recently known more for its jazz music and barbecue than its football team, could perhaps be on the brink of entering NFL relevancy once again. The Kansas City Chiefs are returning 6 Pro Bowlers (pictured), have the No. 1 overall draft pick and inked Alex Smith to a three year, $10 million contract.  Throw in an Andy Reid to boot and the Chief’s now have a puncher’s chance of competing — not only in the AFC West — but also in the entire AFC conference.

Put down the Arthur Bryant’s spare ribs for a second, Kansas City. Things just got real.

IF Andy Reid can move on from the past.

The Chiefs made a splash by bringing in head coach Andy Reid after the conclusion of last season. If he can forget about Philadelphia and his roller coaster story that was his career with the Eagles, the Chiefs will be undoubtedly getting a legend to replace Romeo Crennel as head coach. Reid brings with him a west coast offensive mindset and a 140-102-1 record. A perfect match for his new medium range passing prodigy, Alex Smith.  Unlike in Philly, Reid will be able to focus solely on coaching matters. After the Chiefs hired GM John Dorsey, who is a friend and former co-worker of Reid’s from their days in Green Bay, it was made clear in his contract that Dorsey would have the final say on all personnel matters.

AND the Kansas City Chiefs take care of their “should win” games.

Heading into next season, Kansas City will have the one of the lightest schedules in the league thanks to a 2012 average opponent winning percentage of .473. Other than the Denver Broncos, the AFC West hasn’t really been a house of horrors for the rest of the league. In addition to playing Oakland and San Diego twice, Kansas City plays Jacksonville (2-14), Philadelphia (4-12), Tennessee (6-10), Cleveland (5-11), and Buffalo (6-10). Full schedule here.

WHEN Alex Smith grasps Andy Reid’s West Coast offensive scheme.

There is no reason why Alex Smith shouldn’t thrive under Reid’s system. Reid has confirmed that he will be doing the offensive play calling for the Chiefs, which should prove to be quite an upgrade from previous offensive coordinator Brian Daboll. Putting the Harbaugh situation aside, Smith proved to be an effective game manager, passer and winner with the 49ers. In 10 games last season, he completed 70% of his passes for over 1700 yards. Smith is a very effective short-to-medium range passer who has averaged just over 6.5 yards per completion in his career. Expect the Chiefs to continue relying on Jamaal Charles who is coming off of a 1500 yard season. Smith won’t have Crabtree or Vernon Davis, but he will have a solid WR corps in Dwayne Bowe, Dexter McCluster, and Donnie Avery, who last year all combined for over 2000 yards.

BY AARON BRATKA ON APRIL 23, 2013

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About J.P. Scott

Owner and editor of Know It All Football, contributor to AthlonSports.com and GridirionExperts.com. Member of the Football Writers Association of America.

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