In the Kansas City Chiefs' 36-35 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, Patrick Mahomes threw for 343 yards and three touchdowns. For a major chunk of the contest, the Chiefs moved the ball down the field with ease — at least through the air. Things weren't working on the ground, and the commitment to the run game may have cost them in the end.
The Chiefs ran the ball 18 times against the Ravens on Sunday night, tallying just 62 yards (3.4 yards per attempt) and a touchdown. Their longest run by anyone not named Tyreek Hill was for nine yards. On the other side of the ball, Baltimore rushed 41 times for a whopping 251 yards and a trio of touchdowns. It was crystal clear which team had things rolling on the ground, yet the Chiefs continued to try to keep running down the stretch. Head coach Andy Reid talked about his attempt at a run-pass mix after Sunday's Week 2 bout.
“[I] felt we ran the ball real decent in the first half," Reid said. "We came back with it in the second half, and we had a couple plays that lost yardage, and it didn’t help us. We came back with it again, and it ended up in the turnover. I felt like we needed to throw the ball, too. I felt like we needed to do both. We probably didn’t get enough yards rushing.”
A specific player who didn't make as huge of an impact in the running game as some expected was Clyde Edwards-Helaire. The 2020 first-round pick toted the football 13 times for just 46 yards and didn't score a single touchdown. He also coughed the ball up on the Chiefs' final offensive possession, which led to the Ravens sealing the deal on the ensuing drive. Multiple runs on first down were especially poor, and Reid admitted that the Chiefs can't afford to keep doing that against quality opponents.
“They blitzed less," Reid said of the Ravens' defensive gameplan. "We put ourselves in some situations on third down in the second half. You can't do that – not against this team. You’ve got to take care of first and second down. You’ve got to play better football against a good football team.”
To this point, Edwards-Helaire has yet to justify his status as a first-round pick — especially as a running back. Part of that stems from the Chiefs not utilizing him a ton in the passing game, a bit falls on the offensive line and another part can be attributed to injuries. With that said, he needs to be better. It's going to take a group effort to maintain some sort of effective balance on offense, and the Chiefs are hoping to get things figured out soon.