Defense has been the key as well as a dominant running game to support the undefeated Chiefs (3-0) who have seen two of those wins come against the NFC East consecutively. That doesn't bode well for the winless and under protective Giants who have already been sacked 11 times in just 3 games. Kansas City looks to continue the trend this afternoon at Arrowhead Stadium.
The pass rush was clicking on all cylinders in their Thursday night 26-16 win over Philadelphia sacking Michael Vick 6 times while forcing 5 turnovers. Their +9 turnover ratio is a far cry from 2012' s league worst margin of -24. They've also recorded 15 sacks so far with half of them coming from Justin Houston who recorded 4.5 alone in the win over the Eagles. The opposition would need to establish a pregame plan in order to endure offensive success as teams have averaged only 309 total yards through the first 3 games. The Giants, who have yet to find their offense are tops in the league with 13 turnovers are last in the NFL in rushing at 44.3 yards per game and are giving up an average of 129 overall on the ground.
Kansas City has completely shut down the opposition's No. 2 receiving option so far this season, allowing a combined eight catches for 74 yards and zero touchdowns to Ace Sanders, Miles Austin and Riley Cooper. With Victor Cruz being Peyton Manning's obvious go-to target right now, Hakeem Nicks could struggle to get looks against the Chiefs. Manning (67/114 931 5 TD 8 INT) was sacked 7 times by Carolina in a 38-0 blowout loss last week. Cruz (16-261 3 TD) hasn't hit paydirt since week 1 where he scored all of his 3 TD in a loss to Dallas.
Alex Smith (64/105 669 4 TD) has not thrown a pick all season and may have one of his breakout games feasting on one of the league's most vulnerable defenses. The Giants are allowing a league-worst 38.3 points per game and rank 24th in total defense yielding 382 yards per contest. Smith has adjusted well to Andy Reid's West Coast offense in his first year in Kansas City and appears on track to perhaps have the best statistical season of his career. Week 4 against the Giants presents as good of an opportunity as any for Jamaal Charles (52-224 4.3 2 TD) to break the 100 yard barrier. Running backs are averaging 112 rushing yards per game against New York, which includes a 120-yard performance from DeAngelo Williams in Week 3. Donnie Avery (11-190 1 TD) could also have a big game if big blue doesn't maintain their secondary man to man routes and contain Smith's options.
Kansas City's front-seven is scary. Their pass defense is 6th in the league. What's more is that their defensive line and linebacker groups make up one of the toughest front-sevens in the league. This is a terrifying group, and a group that will stop the Giants offense from doing much of anything Sunday.