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Tyrann Mathieu speaks out on what’s behind Kansas City’s lackluster defense of late

Chiefs, Tyrann Mathieu

While the Kansas City Chiefs still possess one of the better defenses in the league, they’ve seen a significant drop-off lately in their efforts. Tyrann Mathieu owned up to the secondary’s lack of energy in their past few contests. The former LSU standout gave his thoughts as to why the Chiefs’ defense hasn’t been up to its stellar standards as of late, more specifically against the Las Vegas Raiders in Week 11:

“Obviously, I didn’t think we did a great job tackling early on in the game,” Mathieu told reporters during a press conference on Wednesday. “It was a lot of third downs where we couldn’t get off the field, missed tackles, miscommunication.

The Chiefs ended a tightly contested 35-31 match with the Raiders last week that handed them their ninth win of the season, with their only loss coming to Las Vegas in Week 5. Still, the Raiders, along with other squads, have at times given the top tier Chiefs a run for their money during long stretches.

“It’s little things, but they’re important things,” Mathieu continued. “If we can continue to harp on those things and continue to make those things important, I think we’ll be fine. We’re kind of upset with the last two outings we’ve had. I wouldn’t say that we’re down. We’ve kind of been in these situations before — the kind of situations where you have to lean on each other [and] take the coaching. You’ve got to find a way to get better.”

Despite their defensive woes, the Chiefs still remain first in the AFC West against their division rivals in the Raiders. They’ll look to increase that margin on Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.