Apart from setting nearly every franchise record, the Kansas City offense is doing anything but standing pat ahead of the 2019 season.
Between no-look passes from Patrick Mahomes II, breakaway runs from a bevy of backs and highlight-reel catch after highlight-reel catch, the group is far from settled.
“Right now, we’re in motion to do some good things, but we’re still working to come together,” offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy said. “We’re making plays, we’re doing some good things, but when it’s all said and done with, we just need to continue to strain.
“Talent gives you a chance, but when you’ve gotta go into a 60-minute dogfight, we’ve gotta learn to strain to finish.”
The Chiefs offense has no lack of talent. The MVP consistently has some of the game’s top receiving talents in Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce and Sammy Watkins, along with one of the game’s top offensive lines.
In their last dogfight, an overtime loss to New England in the AFC Championship, the Chiefs failed to play a full 60 minutes of consistent offensive football, being held scoreless in the opening half.
Mahomes noted in the offseason he had a difficult time watching the Super Bowl because of his disappointment in failing to make it.
“Obviously when you first come to training camp you expect to win the Super Bowl,” Mahomes said upon arrival at training camp. “Coming in with that same mentality of we’re going into each and every day getting better and making sure we’re getting better each day because in order to get to that lofty goal of the Super Bowl you have to make sure that you maximize each and every opportunity that you have.”
For Mahomes, much of the offseason was spent on keeping his footwork consistent in and the pocket and on throws, a trait coaches have noticed improving.
“The overall improvement has been very consistent,” Bieniemy said. “The kid can tell you exactly what he did wrong, and that’s the good thing. It’s an autocorrect deal that Pat has from within.”
Behind their leader, and a group familiar with one another, the offense is comfortable and feels it matches the defense’s energy each day.
“We can definitely take it another level though,” running back Carols Hyde said. “I think so far, it’s been good. I definitely feel like we have another level in us.”
Whether it be on the islands or at an area high school, Mahomes and his receiving corps took time to get in extra work, leading the group to arrive in St. Joe with chemistry as if it was the season.
Meanwhile, the offensive line often takes in barbecues and games of pool volleyball to grow their cohesiveness, despite ranking among the league’s top position groups.
“The offensive line is probably the most cohesive group. We do everything together,” center Austin Reiter said. “We have the most people on the field working together at one time. We’re always trying to work, trying to talk out there, be on the same page. It’s going well.”
Though highlights may show an offense clicking on all cylinders, the offense feels it has more notches to climb to reach, and even exceed, the production of 2018.
“Everything is not gonna be done perfect,” Bieniemy said. “The only thing we want is consistent, disciplined men that understand what it takes to be a professional, and it’s not easy. You’ve gotta learn to strain when things aren’t perfect.”