Both the Kansas City Chiefs and the Dallas Cowboys looked strong in Week 1 victories, and the two teams will battle it out in an effort to begin the season 2-0 in Week 2. The Chiefs and Cowboys will meet on Sunday, Sept. 15, and the Cowboys are favored to win it.
That's due to the fact that the Chiefs were among the worst teams in the NFL last year. There's no recent games between the two teams, either. One would be pointless given how much the Chiefs have changed over the course of the offseason, as well. Dallas hasn't changed a whole lot, but that's because the team believes in the talent they have at the moment.
Let's take a look at both teams below.
Meet the Chiefs
The Chiefs finished last season with the worst record in the NFL. They ousted their coaching staff and their quarterback, and brought in some outside talent. That came in the form of head coach Andy Reid and quarterback Alex Smith. Reid is a proven winner, while Smith was just starting to come into his own. Together, the two hold the hopes of Kansas City competing in the here and now.
Smith had a very ... Alex Smith-like game in his first outing. He completed 21 of 34 passes for 173 yards and two touchdowns, with no picks. That was plenty enough to steamroll the Jacksonville Jaguars, who only managed a safety after a blocked punt.
The big story for Kansas City is the quad injury to running back Jamaal Charles. He's expected to play, but if he's limited, then the Chiefs could be in trouble against a better-than-advertised Dallas defense.
Meet the Cowboys
Dallas has fallen short of expectations for years with Tony Romo at the helm as their starting quarterback. But Jerry Jones believes in him, and the coaching staff believes in him. Accordingly, the Cowboys doubled down on their aging quarterback, giving him a huge contract extension, more responsibility in the offense and more work to put in on the practice field
Whether or not that was ultimately the right move will be determined over the next couple seasons. What is known is that Romo played well in Week 1. He completed 36 of 49 pass attempts for 263 yards for two touchdowns and an interception. He led the Cowboys to a victory over the New York Giants, but his defense might be better given the credit for that.
Dallas forced multiple turnovers on the Giants, picking off Eli Manning three times and forcing David Wilson to fumble the ball twice. They'll be trying to get Smith, a quarterback who isn't big on turning the ball over, to have an out-of-character game on Sunday.
Local Takes: Chiefs
Joel Thorman of Arrowhead Pride is excited to see the Chiefs as the favorites, at least on some books, heading into this game -- home team or not:
Yeah, yeah, the home team gets three points or whatever they say but this part is fact: The Chiefs are favored in this game. Home team or not. I don't know what kind of line I expected in this game but it's exciting to see the Chiefs as the favorite. Surprised? Yeah I am surprised even though, as I said, I don't really know what I expected.
Local Takes: Cowboys
Dave Halprin of Blogging the Boys thinks that it will be most interesting to see how Andy Reid and the Chiefs attack the Dallas defense:
The Giants found success with intermediate to deep throws on the Cowboys secondary, a result of the linebackers vacating the middle zone in attacking the line and the secondary playing with too much cushion and suffering some bad communication. The Cowboys defense is built on speed, it's built to chase down ball-carriers. They don't mind giving up the short pass, Andy Reid doesn't mind taking it. Sure tackling will be a must this week, the
EaglesChiefs will get the ball to their playmakers quickly and let them do the rest. This is a precise offense, the defense must be quick and sure-tackling to counter it.
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To summarize all those RTs, great day injury wise. Romo, Dez, Claiborne running with the 1s. Spencer, Dunbar both full go. McCray back.— Blogging The Boys (@BloggingTheBoys) September 11, 2013
The experts over at ESPN are somewhat divided on this game. Nine of the 14 experts are picking the Chiefs to win. It's definitely an interesting situation given the difference of opponents in Week 1 -- the Giants are indisputably better than the Jaguars, for instance.
The line opened up as even money, but the Chiefs could be had as 3-point favorites on some books as the week progressed, according to OddsShark.