- The Kansas City Chiefs recently added defensive end Frank Clark from Seattle
- KC’s odds to win the Super Bowl changed marginally after the move
- Should bettors wager on the Chiefs before their price gets any higher?
After a heartbreaking loss to the New England Patriots, the Kansas City Chiefs have been anything but quiet this offseason. KC has re-worked their defense, which was highlighted by the recent addition of Frank Clark.
Without a first round pick, and a QB on a rookie contract, KC is in win-now mode. Should we be buying the hype?
Super Bowl 54 Odds
|Team||2018 Record||2018 Result||Super Bowl 54 Odds at BetOnline|
|New England Patriots||11-5||Won Super Bowl||+600|
|Kansas City Chiefs||12-4||Lost AFC Championship||+700|
|New Orleans Saints||13-3||Lost NFC Championship||+800|
|Los Angeles Rams||13-3||Lost Super Bowl||+1000|
|Chicago Bears||12-4||Lost Wild Card Round||+1200|
*Odds taken 04/24/2019. Click on the link in the table above to see odds for all teams.
The Chiefs odds have moved to varying degrees. Their Super Bowl odds went from +750 to +700 on BetOnline, and their average odds went from +710 to +690.
It presents good value for the runner-up in the AFC.
Clark Punctuates Kansas City Chiefs’ Busy Offseason
Kansas City Chiefs Key Defensive Additions and Subtractions
|Defensive Additions||Defensive Subtractions|
|Tyrann Mathieu, S||Eric Berry, S|
|Frank Clark, DE||Dee Ford, DE|
|Alex Okafor, DE||Justin Houston, DE/LB|
|Emmanuel Ogbah, DE||Allen Bailey, DL|
|Bashaud Breeland, CB||Ron Parker, CB|
|Steven Nelson, S|
|Eric Murray, S|
When Eric Berry was on the field in 2018, he struggled to find his Pro Bowl form. The longtime Chief is gone, and in his place is Tyrann Mathieu. Mathieu finished 11 points ahead of Berry in Pro Football Focus’ overall defensive grade.
Chiefs notable defensive additions this offseason:
– S Tyrann Mathieu
– DE Frank Clark
– CB Bashaud Breeland
– DE Alex Okafor
– DE Emmanuel Ogbah
If you don’t think our defense has vastly improved, you haven’t been paying attention!
— The Reid Option (@ReidOptionKC) April 23, 2019
He was also a slightly better tackler, and 13 points better in coverage. Their biggest trade-off however, came when they shipped out Dee Ford, and added Clark.
Dee Ford vs Frank Clark Statistical Comparison
|8.9||Pass Rush Productivity||8.7|
|518||Pass Rush Snaps||441|
As you can see, from a pass rush perspective, Pro Football Focus has Ford and Clark shockingly close. The edge on pass rushing may go to Clark, as his numbers came on 77 fewer snaps.
For comparison's sake – Dee Ford put up just 1 season of 56 or more pressures (2018) and had only 1 season (also 2018) with a higher overall grade than Frank Clark's career-low overall grade of 66.1.
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) April 23, 2019
Clark was actually significantly better against the run than Ford too. On 353 rushing snaps, Ford’s Stop Percentage was 4.2%. Clark’s was 5.6% on 233 snaps.
Do Kansas City Chiefs’ Additions Out-Weigh Losses?
In a perfect world, the answer is “yes”. But things are a little murky.
One thing about Brett Veach: he's not afraid to take the big swing. You win in January with stars, and Veach acquires them.
Frank Clark, Tyrann Mathieu and Sammy Watkins are all top talents. We can argue about character, money, etc., but Veach identifies targets and gets them.
— Matt Verderame (@MattVerderame) April 24, 2019
Berry and Mathieu play the position differently, but Mathieu’s availability makes him an upgrade. After some injury-shortened years, he’s played 1,100+ snaps in back-to-back seasons.
After some injury-shortened years, Mathieu has played 1,100+ snaps in back-to-back seasons.
The hope is that Breeland is an improvement over Steven Nelson. Breeland allowed a Catch Percentage of 59% last year though, worse than Nelson’s 53%. He also played just 173 snaps.
But the changes on the defensive line could offer mixed results.
Chiefs defensive subtractions this offseason:
– Justin Houston
– Dee Ford
– Eric Berry
– Eric Murray
– Steven Nelson
– Ron Parker
– Allen Bailey
Please chill on the hype 😂 they lost more than they gained defensively🤷🏻♂️😅 https://t.co/zOXn6K8azl
— Not that Jordan Taylor (@JTaylorTakes) April 23, 2019
Justin Houston’s defensive and pass rush grades were better than Ogbah’s and Okafor’s. Houston and Bailey also played 250+ snaps against the run. Ogbah played 296 snaps and graded out better than them, but Okafor’s 223 was his most since 2015.
Are the Kansas City Chiefs Worthy Super Bowl Favorites?
The changes could have mixed results, but the Chiefs are either the best, or second best team in the AFC.
It depends what the Patriots do in the draft.
KC has tweaked their defensive line, and gotten a little more reliable at Safety. Corner is still a question, but they can find someone, even without a first round pick.
District Attorney announced he will not file charges in the investigation against Chiefs’ WR Tyreek Hill. A crime has occurred but no conclusive evidence as to who committed it.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 24, 2019
KC still sits atop the AFC, eyeing a top two spot when the season starts. It’s tough to see them getting a better number before September.