KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Much has been made of the short passing game the Kansas City Chiefs employ each week and whether they can continue to be successful without getting much in the way of big plays.
One thing gives them a chance. Chiefs receivers have done a nice job of making yards after catching those short throws from quarterback Alex Smith.
The Chiefs are only 17th among the NFL's 32 teams in yards after the catch with 870. But the Chiefs don't have as many receptions as many other NFL teams and broken down by yards after the catch per reception, the Chiefs are fifth at 6.04.
"Kelce obviously stands out," offensive coordinator Doug Pederson said. "He's broken some tackles and been able to make some long runs. Dwayne [Bowe] is another guy that here recently you throw it to him quick and he has the strength and power to break a tackle. Obviously, our backs, Jamaal can do that."
The Chiefs attempt few deep passes but the threat remains because they have receivers like A.J. Jenkins, De'Anthony Thomas and the injured Donnie Avery who are fast.
"We use a multitude of formations, motions and shifts to sort of disguise our three-step passing game and that's been helping for us," Pederson said.
"It's strange that things have happened that way for us. Part of it is our ability to run the football, particularly in the second half, which we did this past weekend. The other thing is if you do throw it short, you expect your guys to break tackles and make longer runs. We've just got to continue to use the formula that's been working for us and continue to grow off that."