The Kansas City Chiefs' Monday night loss to the Philadelphia Eagles was a game that confirmed a lot of what the football world already knew.
On one hand, Andy Reid's team is still capable of hanging in there with great teams despite being flawed. On the other, though, the offense remains an issue that could come back to bite Kansas City come playoff time. After taking a 10-point lead into the halftime locker room, the Chiefs couldn't hang on to their advantage and instead left many wondering what their exact standing is among the game's elite.
With the previous week of games officially in the books and a new slate on the horizon, where do the Chiefs stand? Let's look at Week 12 NFL power rankings to see where some major outlets rank Kansas City among its peers in the AFC and NFC.
NFL.com: 5 (last week: 2)
The Chiefs take their biggest fall in NFL.com's power rankings for this week, trailing the San Francisco 49ers, Detroit Lions, Baltimore Ravens and the Eagles. Highlighting a margin for error that isn't what it used to be, the rankings outline a team that was simultaneously good but not good enough when it mattered the most:
You can’t turn the ball over twice in the red zone and drop umpteen passes -- each one more crushing than the next -- and expect to win against a team as good as the Eagles. The Chiefs’ defense turned in a first-class effort, even if it wore down a bit late, and Patrick Mahomes and Isiah Pacheco made enough plays. This one is going to sting, if for no other reason than it served as a reminder that the Chiefs’ pass catchers -- even Travis Kelce on Monday -- have been a net disappointment this season. Kelce had a drop and a fumble. Justin Watson had at least three, including Mahomes’ final attempt. But if Marquez Valdes-Scantling catches that late deep ball, perhaps none of it mattered. The Chiefs were the better team Monday until they weren’t.
ESPN: 3 (last week: 2)
Falling just one spot for ESPN, this week's power rankings still hold Kansas City in relatively high regard. The theme entering Week 12 is temperature checks for seats, and Adam Teicher writes that running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire is on a hot one:
Edwards-Helaire's fourth, and most likely last, season with the Chiefs has been his least productive. The 2020 first-round draft pick doesn't play much, and he has rushed for only 129 yards, which puts him on a pace for a career low. Worse, Edwards-Helaire is averaging 3.6 yards per carry, by far the worst of his career. He will likely finish the season in Kansas City, but don't expect the Chiefs to re-sign him when it's over. -- Adam Teicher
Bleacher Report: 2 (last week: 2)
Gary Davenport, Maurice Moton and Brent Sobleski aren't moving the Chiefs down any rungs on the Week 12 power rankings ladder. With that said, they also aren't overlooking the wide receiver issue that continues to creep up when it's the least appropriate:
But these Chiefs might actually have a problem—the wide receivers just aren't good.
Yes, the Chiefs still have the NFL's No. 1 tight end in Travis Kelce, who had seven catches for 44 yards and a touchdown. But defenses are bracketing Kelce with double-coverage constantly, and the Kansas City wideouts can't make them pay for it. Justin Watson was targeted 11 times Monday night—and caught less than half those targets for 53 yards.
The Chiefs are going to make the playoffs. They will probably win the AFC West.
But once the postseason starts and the Chiefs have to face the Bills or Ravens, those deficiencies at wide receiver could be, well, a problem.
The Athletic: 2 (last week: 2)
Echoing a similar sentiment, The Athletic keeps the Chiefs behind only the Eagles for another week. The outlet still believes in Kansas City as clearly a good team, even after a second-half collapse on the offensive side of the ball:
We know this because they are the Chiefs, and they have the best quarterback on the planet. Still, it’s worth noting this team is not at peak form despite having Patrick Mahomes at the helm. Kansas City is 14th in the league in scoring (22.5 ppg) and have scored an NFL-low 53 points in the second half this season. They were outscored 14-0 in the final two quarters Monday night, the third straight game they have been shut out in the second half. Mahomes hasn’t been the problem, of course. Marquez Valdez-Scantling dropped what probably would have been the game-winner late Monday and now has an NFL-worst six drops on targets of 30 or more yards downfield.
Yahoo Sports: 4 (last week: 2)
NFL/betting writer Frank Schwab didn't mince words in his analysis after Week 11. He's fair in pointing out that Mahomes gave Valdes-Scantling and Watson chances to get the job done at the end of the game, only for them to not come down with potential game-saving catches:
You won't find many better passes, given the situation, than the one Patrick Mahomes put on Marquez Valdes-Scantling's hands deep downfield late in Monday night's game. The same can be said for Mahomes' fourth-and-25 pass to Justin Watson. Both dimes were dropped and the Chiefs lost after being shut out in the second half, a reminder that this season has been a lot more challenging than last season was for Kansas City.