Sports

After feel-good turnaround, Chiefs already searching for answers in Year 2 of new regime

  • Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith (11) walks off the field after an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans  Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo. The Titans won 26-10. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

    Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith (11) walks off the field after an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo. The Titans won 26-10. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sept. 7, 2014, file photo, Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) carries the ball in the first half of an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans in Kansas City, Mo. Charles had seven carries for 19 yards and four catches for 15 yards in the season-opening loss to Tennessee, stunning numbers for the All-Pro running back. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 7, 2014, file photo, Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) carries the ball in the first half of an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans in Kansas City, Mo. Charles had seven carries for 19 yards and four catches for 15 yards in the season-opening loss to Tennessee, stunning numbers for the All-Pro running back. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • Tennessee Titans cornerback Jason McCourty (30) breaks up a pass intended for Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Donnie Avery (17) resulting in an interception by Titans free safety Michael Griffin (33) during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo. The Titans won 26-10. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

    Tennessee Titans cornerback Jason McCourty (30) breaks up a pass intended for Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Donnie Avery (17) resulting in an interception by Titans free safety Michael Griffin (33) during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo. The Titans won 26-10. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)  (The Associated Press)

Was last year a smoke-and-mirrors mirage? Did the Kansas City Chiefs go from 2-14 to 11-5 and the playoffs on the strength of dumb luck?

There's an argument to be made for it after their season-opening loss to Tennessee.

Alex Smith threw three interceptions after receiving a big contract extension. Running ball Jamaal Charles touched the ball 11 times after getting his own new deal. Wide receiver Dwayne Bowe was suspended. First-round draft pick Dee Ford got on the field for just three snaps.

Defensive starters Derrick Johnson and Mike DeVito were lost to season-ending injuries, too.

Now, the Chiefs will have to pull out of a downward spiral at arguably the toughest place in the AFC: Denver. They visit the Broncos in Week 2 on Sunday.