The last time Andy Reid coached a team to a 7-0 record to start a season, he took a trip to the Super Bowl.
In 14 years in Philadelphia, the 55-year-old head coach led the Eagles to a 7-0 start in 2004, and he’s done the same in his first season with the surprising Kansas City Chiefs. That squad couldn’t make it eight in a row, but the Eagles would finish 13-3 with a bye, and fell to New England in the title game by three points.
Reid and the Chiefs will put the NFL's sole remaining perfect record on the line against a staunch Cleveland Browns defense on Saturday afternoon at Arrowhead Stadium.
The Browns are coming off two straight losses after last week’s 31-13 road letdown to Green Bay, giving up a 100-yard game to a receiver for just the second time all year. The Browns secondary is still sixth overall in the league, allowing 219.9 yards a game and the frontline is eighth with 20 sacks, led by rookie Barkevious Mingo and Desmond Bryant.
That crew will probably be asked to do the heavy lifting until veteran quarterback Jason Campbell finds his legs on the field. Head coach Rob Chudzinski chose Campbell over second-year passer Brandon Weeden, who’s totaled five touchdowns to six picks, and has completed less half his passes twice this season.
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Campbell, a first round pick of the Washington Redskins in 2005, signed with Cleveland in March as a back-up. His last start came with Chicago last season, a 32-7 loss in which he threw for 107 yards, a touchdown and two picks. Over his eight-year career, Campbell's amassed a 30-41 record.
If Campbell stumbles again, it won’t be for a lack of targets. Tight end Jordan Cameron has pulled down 45 receptions for 515 yards and a whopping six touchdowns, while receiver Josh Gordon came off his suspension ablaze for 27 catches for 450 yards and two scores in five games.
The Chiefs have a little more consistency under center in Alex Smith. He’s struggled a bit with his accuracy, and hasn’t thrown a touchdown in three consecutive games, but Reid isn’t about to mess with chemistry during a win streak.
Smith has limited his turnovers, and the rest of the Chiefs success comes strictly from running back Jamaal Charles and a defense that’s produced a league leading 35 sacks and lets up less than 12 points a game.
In last week’s 17-16 victory over Houston, the Chiefs forced the Texans into two field goals, a fumble, and four punts on their last seven possessions. On its final three drives, Houston couldn't muster a single yard, and actually lost 31 yards.
Charles is third in the NFL with 561 rushing yards, and is tied for second with six touchdowns. He also leads the Chiefs with 36 receptions, and is second with 337 receiving yards.
The Browns enlisted rusher Willis McGahee before Week Three, and the veteran leads the team with 203 yards and touchdown. McGahee sat out Thursday’s practice with a knee injury, while linebacker Quentin Groves has been out all week with the ankle injury he suffered against Detroit two weeks ago.
Kansas City held starting safety Kendrick Lewis out of practice on Thursday with an ankle injury. He’s listed as questionable, but Lewis’s status was the same last week before the Houston win and he played anyway.
Point Spread: Kansas City favored by 9 points.
Over-Under: 39.5 points
Kickoff Time: 1 PM Eastern Time
Where To Watch Online: NFL Game Access
TV Channel: CBS
Prediction: Kansas City 20, Cleveland 17