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Chiefs’ rebuilt offensive line flexes with dominant run performance

Chiefs Eagles Football
Posted at 4:49 PM, Oct 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-05 17:49:19-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs have always had a high-octane offense, especially since Patrick Mahomes’ ascendance to starting quarterback in 2018, but now it’s added a demoralizing element as well.

The new-look Chiefs offensive line, which features five new starters, bullied the Philadelphia Eagles for more than 200 yards rushing Sunday in a 42-30 win at Lincoln Financial Field.

“The camera doesn’t lie,” running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire said. “We’re getting push and we’re getting movement. That’s what gets the run game going. At that point, it’s my job to keep it rolling and give those guys that confidence boost that, when we go out and do what we’re supposed to do, good things come from it.”

Kansas City racked up 200 yards rushing and a touchdown on 32 carries.

It’s the sixth time the Chiefs have topped 200 yards rushing under Reid and only the second time in the last five seasons.

“I think it’s just going to open everything up,” Patrick Mahomes, who ran for 26 yards and also completed 24 of 30 passes for 278 yards with five touchdowns and an interception. “Being able to run the football in this league is crucial.”

The effort was overshadowed by Mahomes’ five-touchdown day and a monster game from wide receiver Tyreek Hill, but that ability to attack opposing defenses in every way possible is important for the Chiefs.

“We want to be able to mix it up — one or the other, or sometimes both,” Reid said. “... We want to be able to do both and do it when we want to do it.”

Edwards-Helaire racked up 102 yards on 14 carries, adding two catches for 12 yards and a touchdown in the receiving game.

It was his second straight 100-yard game, matching his total from his rookie season after only four games.

“That son of a gun brings it,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “He runs hard. I’m sure he’ll be sore (Monday), but what a great job he’s been doing the last few weeks.”

Darrel Williams aided the cause with 10 carries for 42 yards, including a 1-yard touchdown, while wide receiver Mecole Hardman Jr. picked up 25 yards on two carries.

The Chiefs led 35-23 midway through the fourth quarter, but the defense was struggling to get stops. It was no time to lift off the proverbial gas pedal.

Reid, who made NFL history by notching his 100th win with Kansas City, gave Philadelphia’s defense a heavy dose of the run game before Mahomes and Hill hooked for a back-breaking 44-yard TD bomb.

“Clyde’s running the ball really well,” Mahomes said. “Other guys are stepping in and running the ball really well. You saw today, once you run the ball a lot, defenses will come up and you can hit them over the top.”

The Chiefs’ rebuilt offensive line — left tackle Orlando Brown Jr., left guard Joe Thuney, center Creed Humphrey, right guard Trey Smith and right tackle Lucas Niang — hasn’t played together much, so they should continue to gel even more in coming weeks.

“We definitely take pride in it as offensive linemen,” Brown said. “We take pride in being able to run the ball successfully, keeping Pat as clean as possible. We take pride in those things and to come out here and rush for 200 yards on a Sunday — man, super exciting.”

Kansas City General Manager Brett Veach built a new offensive line from scratch after Tampa Bay dominated a Chiefs offensive line riddled with injuries in Super Bowl LV.