The Kansas City Chiefs were down after their season-opening loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday but it was clear they weren't ready to blame anyone for their troubles. Despite the ability to pin the loss on the suspension of Tamba Hali and the loss of several starters on defense to injury, the team was quick to note that they simply did not get the job done against the Falcons. Nothing more.
"We can't be focused on the injuries because that isn't something that we can control," said safety Eric Berry after the game. "The only thing we can control are the 11 guys on defense, the 11 guys on offense and the 11 guys on special teams and just rally together."
The Chiefs were without their top pass rusher in Hali, but they were also missing their top cornerback Brandon Flowers, starting defensive tackle Anthony Toribio and safety Kendrick Lewis among others.
"I thought we stuck to our game plan," said linebacker Justin Houston, who had the Chiefs only sack on the afternoon. "We knew we needed some guys to step up on defense because we knew that we had some guys that were going to be out. We didn't play our best, but, we've just got to come out and do better."
While Derrick Johnson admitted that Hali would have bolstered the defensive play against the Falcons, it wasn't something he was focused on at all.
"Tamba would have helped, of course," said Johnson. "You've got to find a way. You can't have excuses. I didn't even think about Tamba this week. That's just how it is in the NFL."
Clearly the 40 points put up by the Falcons offense is more than just adding a few players. Instead it's something the team will have to study and scheme for in the days ahead before playing another game against the Buffalo Bills in week two.