Chiefs' defense unsatisfied with season-opening performance against Houston

Steve Spagnuolo
Posted at 6:25 PM, Sep 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-17 19:25:59-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs won their opener, but they’re far from satisfied.

After COVID-19 essentially canceled the NFL's offseason, including all preseason games, a season-opening 34-20 win last Thursday against the Houston Texans revealed there’s still plenty of work to do on the Run It Back Tour.

Start with the defense, which wasn't thrilled after giving up two late touchdowns, a fourth-quarter performance Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo deemed less than Super Bowl caliber.

"We all thought we played just OK last week defensively to be honest with you," Spagnuolo said. "I’m glad we won — and there was a point there where it was 31-7, so it looks really good — but we like to play better.”

Defensive end Frank Clark agreed.

"(I'm) pissed off, that’s the word," Clark, who had three tackles and a sack of Deshaun Watson, said. "You pride yourself on stopping the run and finishing games strong as a defense.”

Of course, last week wasn't exactly a failure. The Texans were a playoff team in 2019 and did win a regular-season game last October at Arrowhead Stadium.

"We had some good signs — no penalties on defense, stuff like that — so there were some good signs out there," Clark said. "It wasn’t all bad. It wasn’t as bad as like last year, where you know you get a team coming in here like the Texans and they obviously looked more prepared than us.”

Still, the Chiefs don't think last week's defensive performance showcased the progress and work put into the offseason.

The reigning Super Bowl champions are focused on finishing in the fourth quarter this Sunday.

“I think when we get to that point where we can close a team out, I’d like to be able to do that and not let it get back to, whether it was two possessions or whatever the score was," Spagnuolo said.

Kansas City travels to meet the AFC West rival Los Angeles Chargers at 3:25 p.m. on Sunday at SoFi Stadium.