Alex Smith/Travis Kelce Inside the Tape

During Saturday Evening’s contest between KC and Houston, there was a defining play that essentially turned the momentum over to KC for good. This particular chunk play in the passing game produced a big gain for the Chiefs and propelled them to a defining scoring drive early in the contest. 

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As we can see, the Chiefs come out in heavy (12) Personnel and stack their two receivers. The Texans combat the formation with a classic single high safety look.

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The Chiefs deploy  Play-Action and release their WR’s on vertical routes. Travis Kelce (Attached to LOS) takes an outside release initially as the Play Action muddies the reaction speed of the Houston LB’s. 

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As the play develops, Smith comes off Play-Action into a clean pocket, the WR’s seperate themselves horizontally as they take off down the field. TE Travis Kelce uses elite level route running ability and presses the cushion of the CB attempting to cover him. Kelce also uses eye, head and leverage  manipulation in terms of deceiving the CB . 

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Smith Takes an extra beat in the pocket to survey the field/manipulate the secondary with his eyes/shoulders. While this is happening, the WR’s continue to press vertically while Kelce creates ample separation to get open on the deep crossing route.

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Finally, the ball is released comfortably by Smith into a decent sized window that was beautifully crafted due to great play design, route releases and Kelce using great burst and deception while getting across the field.  The end result was a momentum changing play for KC as they put the proverbial nail in the Texans coffin relatively early in this Wild-Card affair. 

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