Here are some observations based on the snap-count data from the Chiefs’ 27-17 loss to the Denver Broncos on Nov. 17. Numbers provided by the NFL.
*You can read more about this in Saturday’s Star, but rookie Sanders Commings was a fairly busy man in his NFL debut. In addition to logging three snaps on defense — he lined up at cornerback, despite being listed at 6-feet, 223 pounds — Commings said he played on the Chiefs’ kickoff, kick return, punt and punt return units.
“I played special teams in college, all four phases,” Commings said. “So I was comfortable.
The numbers say he played 64 percent of the Chiefs’ special teams snaps, the third-most of any player who logged at least one defensive snap. Only safety Husain Abdullah (91 percent) and Akeem Jordan (79 percent) were used more in that capacity.
“It was great, man, couldn't have asked for a better debut as far as the type of game it was, playing on Sunday night,” Commings said. “We lost, but we'll bounce back.”
*Speaking of Jordan, the Broncos’ high-powered passing attack basically eliminated him from the Chiefs’gameplan. He played a season-low 11 percent of the defensive snaps, just two weeks after playing 71 percent of the snaps against Buffalo.
*Jordan’s pain was essentially Quintin Demps’ gain. Demps played a season-high 90 percent of the Chiefs’ defensive snaps, and was one of six defensive backs — including Kendrick Lewis, Eric Berry, Brandon Flowers, Marcus Cooper and Sean Smith — to play at least 85 percent of the Chiefs’ defensive snaps. Demps, by the way, only played 29 percent of the Chiefs’ defensive snaps against Buffalo.
*When starting defensive end Mike DeVito went down with an injury in the first half, the Chiefs initially called on backup defensive tackle Anthony Toribio to replace him. Toribio, who typically only played in the Chiefs’ goalline defense, proceeded to log 10 snaps Sunday, a season-high for him.
The Chiefs released him a few days later, of course, but I don’t get the sense he did anything wrong against the Broncos. I just think it was a situation where the front office felt his replacement, Kyle Love, probably has more upside. Remember, both DeVito and Tyson Jackson are a little banged up. If they need a guy to log significant snaps going forward, Love — a guy who started the 2012 Super Bowl — is probably better equipped to do that.
But the player the Chiefs ultimately relied upon to replace him was Allen Bailey, who is typically brought in for pass-rush situations. Bailey logged a season-high 45 snaps, though most of this certainly had to do with the Chiefs’ heavy reliance on nickel and dime packages.
*Running back Knile Davis played 12 snaps Sunday, the most he’s played since the season opener against Jacksonville (15). The altitude in Denver probably had something to do with it, but I think it’s interesting the Chiefs called a screen pass that was designed for him that went for 11 yards. That, plus the fact he also logged three snaps on kick return, are possible signs the Chiefs are feeling more comfortable with him. The offense could use some more juice, so his emergence would be a welcome addition.
*Donnie Avery played 79 percent of the offensive snaps (compared to 66 percent last week) while Dexter McCluster played 67 percent of the snaps (compared to 52 percent). This, plus the fact fullback Anthony Sherman and Sean McGrath saw their workloads decrease last week, tells me they used more three-wide sets against the Broncos. This makes sense, considering they were trailing all game and were down by as many as 17 points in the fourth quarter.
*When right tackle Eric Fisher got hurt late in the game, Donald Stephenson came in to replace him. Stephenson also got a few snaps as a tackle-eligible lineman in goalline formations.
*Veteran backup Geoff Schwartz came in at right guard when Jon Asamoah left the game with a calf injury.
|Pos., Name||Off. Snaps||Snap %||ST Snaps||Snap %|
|LT Branden Albert||78||100%||3||9%|
|C Rodney Hudson||78||100%||3||9%|
|LG Jeff Allen||78||100%||3||9%|
|QB Alex Smith||78||100%|
|RT Eric Fisher||73||94%||3||9%|
|TE Anthony Fasano||71||91%|
|WR Dwayne Bowe||68||87%|
|RB Jamaal Charles||65||83%|
|RG Jon Asamoah||62||79%||2||6%|
|WR Donnie Avery||62||79%|
|WR Dexter McCluster||52||67%||7||21%|
|FB Anthony Sherman||23||29%||18||55%|
|TE Sean McGrath||17||22%|
|G Geoff Schwartz||16||21%||3||9%|
|WR Junior Hemingway||15||19%||20||61%|
|RB Knile Davis||12||15%||3||9%|
|RT D. Stephenson||7||9%||3||9%|
|WR A.J. Jenkins||2||3%|
|RB Cyrus Gray||1||1%||24||73%|
|LS Thomas Gafford||10||30%|
|K Ryan Succop||7||21%|
|WR K. Williams||4||12%|
|Pos., Name||Def. Snaps||Snap %||ST Snaps||Snap %|
|NT Dontari Poe||80||100%||3||11%|
|OLB Justin Houston||80||100%||3||11%|
|OLB Tamba Hali||80||100%||3||11%|
|ILB Derrick Johnson||80||100%||3||11%|
|CB Brandon Flowers||80||100%|
|S Eric Berry||80||100%|
|CB Sean Smith||79||99%|
|S Kendrick Lewis||79||99%|
|S Quintin Demps||72||90%||4||12%|
|CB Marcus Cooper||68||85%||12||36%|
|DE Allen Bailey||45||56%||4||12%|
|DE Tyson Jackson||22||28%||4||12%|
|DE Anthony Toribio||10||12%||1||3%|
|ILB Akeem Jordan||9||11%||23||79%|
|S Husain Abdullah||7||9%||30||91%|
|DE Mike DeVito||6||8%||1||3%|
|CB Sanders Commings||3||4%||21||64%|
|CB Ron Parker||30||91%|
|LB Frank Zombo||24||73%|
|LB J. Johnson||24||73%|
|DE Mike Catapano||18||55%|
|LB Dezman Moses||17||52%|
|P Dustin Colquitt||10||30%|