Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bucs opponent preview: Chiefs, Week 11

When they play: Week 11 (Nov. 20) in Kansas City.

2015 record: 11-5, won wild card, lost to Patriots 27-20.

Last time vs. Bucs: Bucs won 38-10 in Tampa in 2012, with Josh Freeman throwing for three touchdowns and Ronde Barber returning an interception 78 yards for a touchdown.

2016 outlook: Which Chiefs are the real Chiefs? The ones that opened 1-5 last year, or the ones that won 11 straight? The ones that blanked the Texans 30-0 in the playoffs, or lost to the Patriots a week later? Alex Smith remains unappreciated, and Kansas City's defense, with five Pro Bowlers last year, is still not to be overlooked amid the rising Raiders and declining Broncos in the AFC West.

Player to watch: Smith had an interception percentage of just 1.5 percent last season -- only Aaron Rodgers (1.4) and Tom Brady (1.1) were lower among QBs with 300-plus passes. He did this with arguably one good receiver in Jeremy Maclin. His career postseason statistics? 11 TDs against one interception. He's 32, so his window for a sustained playoff run is running out.

Rookie to watch: Fifth-round receiver Tyreek Hill was kicked out of Oklahoma State after he was charged with violence against his pregnant girlfriend. He'll get a chance to play for the Chiefs, especially on returns, where he's been compared to Devin Hester.

Key matchup: Front seven vs. opposing running backs. Kansas City racked up 47 sacks without any player getting even eight -- once Justin Houston is healthy, he and Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson are game-changers. Can second-round pick Chris Jones give them another pass-rushing option?

Familiar face: Former USF linebacker Sam Barrington, cut by the Packers, has returned from an ankle injury that cost him almost all of 2015. Still just 25, he has a chance to show more of what he flashed in 2014 in Green Bay.

Cool stat: With limited targets to throw to, the Chiefs ranked 30th in passing yards (203 per game) and had only 20 touchdowns -- only five teams had less. But they had an NFL-low seven interceptions, so they didn't put their defense in many bad positions at all.

Bucs opponent preview: Chiefs, Week 11 09/09/16 [Last modified: Thursday, September 8, 2016 10:12pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Dirk Koetter to Bucs: Take your complaints to someone who can help


    TAMPA — It was just another day of aching bellies at One Save Face.

    Dirk Koetter: “All of our issues are self-inflicted right now.”
  2. Bucs journal: Few complaints about Jameis Winston's play


    TAMPA — It wasn't enough to pull out a win Sunday at Buffalo, but a week removed from a shoulder sprain, Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston threw for 384 yards and three touchdowns against the NFL's No. 2 pass defense.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Brent Grimes (24) signs autographs for fans before an NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn., on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.
  3. Lightning's Jon Cooper uses unusual tactic to create mismatches

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Tyler Johnson is about to swing his left leg over the boards for his next shift alongside linemate Alex Killorn and … who else?

    Stamkos? Kucherov? Point?

    Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper argues the called as his team gets a faceoff violation, leading to penalty and #Caps PP goal, during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (10/09/17).DIRK SHADD   |   Times
  4. A buzz-worthy look at the Astros-Dodgers World Series matchup

    The Heater

    Houston Astros' Yuli Gurriel is congratulated by Jose Altuve after scoring during the fifth inning of Game 7 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip) TXMG170
  5. Florida, FSU try to ignore death threats, angry fans


    GAINESVILLE — Frustration over uncharacteristically down seasons at Florida and Florida State has started to spill over from message boards and start crossing real-world lines.

    Fans watch the Florida Gators game against Texas A&M, at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, in Gainesville, Fla. At the half, Florida was up 10 to 3.