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Andy Reid's Chiefs force Cowboys into mistakes in win

Andy Reid did not bring an explosive offense with him to Kansas City from Philadelphia. Maybe he doesn't need one.

The Chiefs' defense came up big for a second straight week, putting a stranglehold on the Dallas Cowboys in a 17-16 win on Sunday. It's strange to see a 2-0 Reid-led team built around defense and running. It's even stranger that quarterback Alex Smith was the one doing the running.

Smith rushed for a career-high 57 yards, most of which came during a first-half touchdown drive. Kansas City struggled all day to protect Smith, and the Chiefs' offense failed in many opportunities to put away the game. But Smith did enough to win for the second straight week. A nice move in the pocket by Smith before a 31-yard strike on a third-and-long set up Kansas City's other touchdown.

While the Chiefs' offense did just enough to win, the Cowboys' offense self-destructed down the stretch. Miles Austin and Tony Romo lost fumbles on successive drives late in the game. Dez Bryant, who dominated the first half with sensational catches, dropped a wide open pass up the sideline in the fourth quarter. After playing a near-spotless game, Romo made a number of inaccurate throws and poor decisions in the fourth quarter. (He had an interception overturned by a very shaky call, and then threw a few more near-picks.)

The Romo "clutch" narrative is overrated, but even his biggest supporters will admit he struggled late in this game. It happens. The underrated Chiefs defense, on the other hand, stuffed Dallas' running game all day. Dontari Poe continues to be a revelation at defensive tackle.

The Chiefs might not have enough offensive firepower to be a Super Bowl contender this year, but I'm feeling good about my 9-7 prediction. Reid quickly has shown he knows more than one way to win a game.

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