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Success of Chiefs should be no surprise

10/8/2010

The Kansas City Chiefs' 3-0 start has surprised most, but even the most optimistic Chiefs fan would not have predicted they would be the last unbeaten team in the NFL.

Coming off their bye week, the Chiefs have two tough road tests against the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans. After that is a seven-game stretch against teams that are all currently .500 or worse: Jaguars, Bills, at Raiders, at Broncos, Cardinals, at Seahawks and Broncos.

Here are three other reasons for the Chiefs to be optimistic about their future:

Cornerstone at left tackle

Since drafting Branden Albert 15th overall in 2008, he has been the brightest star on an otherwise-maligned offensive line. Albert’s impact on the Chiefs running game has been apparent since he entered the league. Since 2008, the Chiefs have averaged 6.3 rush yards per attempt on runs to the left side. Not only is that the best in the NFL, but it’s 1.5 yards better than the league average.

Highest Yards Per Rush
Running Left Since 2008

Four-Man Rush That Can Get To The Quarterback

In 2009, the Chiefs registered 14 sacks when sending four pass rushers or fewer, good for 24th in the NFL. After Week 3, the Chiefs had registered seven sacks (out of eight total) using four pass rushers or fewer, which was tied for best in the NFL at the time with the Packers, Colts and Eagles.

Return on Investments

In 2008, the Chiefs selected a quartet of players who are making an impact in 2010: Albert, Brandon Flowers, Jamaal Charles and Glenn Dorsey. To this point, the best to boast of from 2009 is Mr. Irrelevant, place-kicker Ryan Succop. However, their draft class of 2010 has produced immediate results, and it's Dexter McCluster and Tony Moeaki who've had the biggest impact. The duo has combined to score four touchdowns -- only the Detroit Lions have more TDs this season from rookies (five).