It wasn’t that long ago that Kansas City crushed Houston in both head-to-head matchups in 2015. In fact the Chiefs’ last win was in the playoffs in a 30-0 beatdown where all five turnovers were credited to then-quarterback Brian Hoyer.
But the Texans (1-0) may end up thanking Kansas City (1-0) for that. Houston entered the offseason and made changes to the personnel on offense. The biggest was signing quarterback Brock Osweiler. The Texans also signed running back Lamar Miller and drafted receivers Will Fuller and Braxton Miller.
That explains why Chiefs coach Andy Reid has emphasized to his players they need to forget about the wins and enter this game — the third between the two teams in the last 19 months — determined, focused and hungry.
Offensive emphasis — Both teams want to run the football. Miller had 28 carries for 106 yards, while Spencer Ware had 11 carries for 70 yards and a touchdown for Kansas City. The reason for the few carries for Ware? Because the Chiefs found themselves in a 24-3 deficit in the second half. Quarterback Alex Smith finished the game by throwing for 363 yards and two touchdowns then scored the game winner on a two-yard scramble to the end zone in overtime.
So keeping Smith and his cohorts on the sideline will be important for the Texans and will pave the way to victory.
Best matchup — Without a doubt Miller is going to have to continue to be productive, especially late in the contest when trying to control the clock. Though they lost to Kansas City, San Diego racked up 155 rushing yards. That’s the kind of production the Texans will need.