Charles Davis: Ware And Hunt "Not The Same Guy"

Spencer Ware is a capable running back, but he's not Kareem Hunt – and that could hurt the Chiefs in the playoffs

Reiter Than You
December 05, 2018 - 8:36 am

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In the Chiefs’ first game without Kareem Hunt, they rushed for 174 yards – but Patrick Mahomes was their leading rusher.

Indeed, Mahomes ran nine times for 52 yards in a 40-33 win over the Raiders on Sunday, while Spencer Ware carried 14 times for 47 yards and a score. Change-of-pace back Damien Williams had five carries for 38 yards, and Tyreek Hill had two carries for 37 yards.

In other words, the rushing attack was very much a team effort.

Ultimately, how big of a loss will Hunt’s absence be?

“Well, I think in the short-term, the Chiefs know how to maneuver offense,” NFL on FOX analyst Charles Davis said on Reiter Than You. “Andy Reid knows how to do it with variety. Look at what he did with Philadelphia, and it always felt like there was a different guy rolling through, although they did have some pretty good horses in there. Duce Staley had a nice run, Brian (Westbrook). So you can go on down the line and see different things that have happened. So he knows how to maneuver. Spencer Ware was supposed to be their lead guy before tearing up his knee a couple of seasons ago.

“But all in all, when you stack up the best of Spencer Ware versus the best of what you’ve seen from Kareem Hunt, it’s not the same guy,” Davis continued. “I’m not going to call it a bail-out, but those extra options you have both in the run and pass game with Kareem Hunt, you don’t have anymore. So it puts a premium on other people stepping up and doing a little bit more.”

Hunt, a third-round pick out of Toledo in 2017, had 2,100+ rushing yards, 800+ receiving yards, and 25 touchdowns (15 rushing, 10 receiving) in 27 regular-season games.

“I do think it hurts them down the road, specially when you get into playoff time and you’re relying on that running back to make a big play for you, whether it’s in the run game or the pass game,” Davis said. “So yeah, on the field, definitely could be an issue for them, I believe. But we’ll see how it plays out.”

The Chiefs (10-2), the No. 1 seed in the AFC, will go for their 11th win this Sunday at home against Baltimore. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. ET.