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Rapid Reaction: Kansas City Chiefs

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A few thoughts on the Kansas City Chiefs' 26-10 loss to the Tennessee Titans at Arrowhead Stadium.

What it means: While it’s dangerous to make too much of a season opener, it’s not too early to think the Chiefs are in some trouble. Their schedule takes a decided turn for the difficult now. They have road games against the Denver Broncos and Miami Dolphins in the next two weeks, followed by a home game against the New England Patriots and two more road games with the San Francisco 49ers and San Diego Chargers. A sub-.500 record through six games looks unavoidable.

Devastating injuries: The Chiefs lost Pro Bowl linebacker Derrick Johnson and starting defensive end Mike DeVito. It’s reasonable to assume both will be out for en extended period. If so, the Chiefs will find it difficult to adequately replace either player. Johnson is one of the league’s top inside linebackers. He’s excellent against the run and in pass coverage. DeVito is a sturdy run defender who had improved as a pass-rusher.

Stock watch: Rookie kicker Cairo Santos had a tough NFL debut. He made his first field goal attempt, from 35 yards, but only after it hit the right upright. His next attempt, from 48 yards, hit the left upright and missed. Better days may be ahead, but it doesn’t ease the sting that the Chiefs cut reliable veteran Ryan Succop to make room for Santos. Meanwhile, one of quarterback Alex Smith's strengths is his ability to protect the ball. But Smith threw two interceptions and the Titans turned each play into a field goal. Smith had just one game all of last season with more than one interception. He threw just seven interceptions in 2013.

Game ball: Strong safety Eric Berry had team-leading 15 tackles with one pass defensed and a quarterback hit. He will have to continue to lead the Chiefs secondary.

What’s next: Things won’t get easier as the Chiefs head to Denver for next Sunday’s game against the Broncos. The Chiefs are 0-4 against Peyton Manning since he joined the Broncos.