DENVER – Chiefs running back/returner Knile Davis was a surprise healthy inactive Sunday against the Denver Broncos.
But coach Andy Reid emphasized after the game he hasn’t lost faith in the third-year pro.
“That’s not what it is at all,” Reid said. “We’re trying to boost our special teams a little bit.”
With Davis not dressing, defensive back Saalim Hakim, who was elevated from the practice squad earlier in the week, took the spot on the gameday roster and contributed on special teams.
“We needed some speed, we felt, on the outside there,” Reid said of Hakim. “He was able to give us that and he actually had a couple of nice plays.
“I mentioned to you before, he’s got 260-plus plays in the National Football League, so we’ve been able to evaluate him there, (special teams coordinator) Dave (Toub) has, and put him in position as a four-phase player.”
Going without Davis didn’t hurt the return game as the Chiefs held a commanding 29-0 lead before the Broncos finally got on the scoreboard late in the fourth quarter and were forced to attempt two onside kicks.
The first onside kick was fielded by fullback Anthony Sherman, who returned it 9 yards, and the second was recovered by second-year safety Daniel Sorensen, who earned postgame praise.
“Sorensen had a couple of big plays,” Reid said. “I’ll tell you, those two onside kicks were as big as anything, as big as a hit or anything else, so that was a relief.”
SMITH ENJOYED WATCHING THE SHOW
The Chiefs defense stood out Sunday, totaling five touchdowns and five sacks against Broncos quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Brock Osweiler, who relieved Manning midway through the third quarter.
And quarterback Alex Smith certainly didn’t mind watching his defensive teammates dominate the Denver offense
“To be sitting there watching on the sidelines was really, really impressive,” Smith said. “It may be one of the defensive performances in a long time.
“I think they (Broncos) got some touchdowns there in the fourth with just kind of clean up time. To get the turnovers, just to be that dominant, to get pressure, giving us great field position the entire game was just really, really impressive.”
Smith said he had a chance to talk to Manning after the game, but he wasn’t about to feel bad for the opposing signal caller, who completed 5 of 20 passes for 35 yards with four interceptions and two sacks (0.0 passer rating).
“Not much, to be honest,” Smith said. “Listen, hands down, he may be one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, maybe the greatest. But they’re the Denver Broncos. I’m not feeling sorry for them by any means.”
Defensive end Mike DeVito, a ninth-year pro, dropped Broncos quarterback Brock Osweiler for a 7-yard loss in the fourth quarter, marking DeVito’s second sack of the season.
The two sacks through nine games established DeVito’s career high for a single season, but he was quick to downplay it.
“Yeah, let’s keep it low,” DeVito said with a laugh. “It’s only two sacks. Let’s not make that big of a deal.”
So when is it safe to start talking about the accomplishment for DeVito, whom defensive line coach Tommy Brasher labeled as the most improved pass rusher on the defensive line during training camp?
“Let’s wait until I get four or five,” DeVito said.
Herbie Teope is the lead Chiefs beat writer for ChiefsDigest.com and The Topeka Capital-Journal. Use the contact page to reach him or find him on Twitter: @HerbieTeope.