On Sunday, the two AFC West teams in action yielded different results, but both had impressive moments. The Kansas City Chiefs won their contest versus the Jacksonville Jaguars easily, as they were expected to. The Oakland Raiders lost to the Indianpolis Colts as they were expected to, but they played better than most people expected.
The Jaguars aren’t a good litmus test for any team to measure itself against, but Smith was as advertised on Sunday. He was 21 of 34 for 173 yards; more importantly, he threw two touchdowns and zero interceptions. While he is not an elite quarterback, Smith will not lose the game for his team, and on Sunday, the game was never in doubt.
Charles looked like himself early on. The Chiefs showed that they plan on using him much more in the passing game this season. Charles injured his quad in the third quarter but did return in the fourth. He didn’t look great in the final frame and appeared to be banged up, but the team does not believe his injury to be severe.
Sometimes, a team dominates the teams they are supposed to. The Chiefs defense had no trouble handling the Jaguars offense. The defense was in attack mode all day, pressuring Blaine Gabbert and company, and totaling six sacks. Justin Houston totaled three sacks on his own and Tamba Hali ran an interception back for a score. If the Chiefs can keep this type of defensive intensity, it will be tough for any offense to move the ball on them.
Pryor ran for 112 yards and threw for 217 yards. He showed he can throw from the pocket and get to the outside with ease. He had a beautiful touchdown pass called back because Darren McFadden could not get his second foot down in the end zone. In the end though, his inexperience showed as he took a sack late on the last drive and the team had no timeouts. He will learn from his mistakes and the Raiders will be the better off for it. On Sunday, Pryor showed he may be able to grow in to a legitimate NFL starter.
Just six weeks ago, not many people believed that.
McFadden struggled on Sunday. He had 17 carries for only 48 yards. He scored one touchdown, but his impact on the game needs to be greater. He is supposed to be the team’s best player on offense and if the team plans on winning games this season, they will need better efforts from him. It was just one game, so makes no sense to read too much in to it.
Photo Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP