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Offensive growth rests with Alex Smith

10/10/2013

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs have 10 offensive touchdowns this season, which isn’t close to being the lowest total in the league. Eleven teams have fewer offensive TDs, so by that measure the Chiefs are doing an adequate job.

Just don’t confuse the issue. The Chiefs are 5-0 because they’ve allowed fewer touchdowns than all but two other NFL teams and because their defense and special teams have chipped in with four touchdowns of their own.

The Chiefs will need more offensive production if they are to stay unbeaten and, more importantly, keep pace with the 5-0 Denver Broncos in the AFC West race. Just for the sake of comparisons here, the 5-0 Broncos have 26 offensive touchdowns. The other unbeaten team, the New Orleans Saints, have 14.

Teams are built differently and have their different strengths and weaknesses, so there’s more than one way to win football games. Still, it’s reasonable to believe the Chiefs will need to score more points.

Maybe the most realistic way for the Chiefs to grow offensively is for quarterback Alex Smith to complete a higher percentage of his passes. Smith is completing slightly more than 58 percent, a low number for the amount of shorter, higher percentages passes that Andy Reid’s West Coast offense calls for.

Again, for comparison’s sake, that’s the 21st highest completion percentage in the league. The league average is almost 62 percent completions.

Smith is capable of hitting a higher percentage. He was at 70 percent last season for the San Francisco 49ers before he was benched.

He’s been under pressure many times this season, which will affect any quarterback’s accuracy. His percentage was the lowest it’s been all season, 51.3 percent, in last week’s game against the Tennessee Titans. The Titans played a lot of tight man-to-man coverage, forcing some errant throws.

Otherwise, it’s on Smith to be more accurate.