The Falcons are set to take on the Chiefs in Kansas City in their season opener on Sunday. To give more insight about the team and their expectations, we asked Joel Thorman five questions about his beloved Chiefs:
SB Nation Atlanta: What's the general level of faith in new head coach Romeo Crennel? What does he bring to the table that Todd Haley did not?
Arrowhead Pride: He brings stability. The Haley era seemed to be so full of drama, head games and things of that nature. Romeo is more of a straight-shooter -- in short, you don't get a lot of BS from him. He's more of a players coach than Haley was. He's had success in the league and been around for a long time. Stability is the big key, though.
SBNA: What exactly can we expect from Jamaal Charles and the Chiefs ground game this year? Is his health still a concern?
AP: His health is a concern in that he tore his ACL last year and we haven't seen him in a real game but all signs are pointing to him being 100 percent. He was lucky that he tore his ACL in Week 2, which gave him plenty of time to recover. He should be healthy and he's in for a full load if the Chiefs need him to.
SBNA: Is Eric Berry ready to bounce back after missing almost all of 2011? SEC fans remember the talent he displayed at Tennessee. Can he still be a superstar in this league?
AP: Yes, Berry is ready to bounce back. Honestly, we've almost taken for granted him coming back. It was just assumed that he would come back 100 percent and he has. He was a full-go at training camp and of all the three ACL guys (Charles, Tony Moeaki and him) he's the one that looks the most prepared.
SBNA: That week 15 win over the Packers: fluke, or the real thing? Is that the caliber of defense we can expect out of the Chiefs this year?
AP: I don't know if fluke is the right word but I don't think the Chiefs could beat the Packers 5 out of 5 times. Todd Haley was fired the week before, the players were fired up for Romeo Crennel and Kyle Orton played that game. A number of factors like that were involved in the game. The defense, though, has top 10 potential -- it's a matter of consistency. Romeo Crennel is an extremely smart defensive coordinator who can perfect the bend but don't break philosophy.
SBNA: Why will the Chiefs win/lose this game? Score prediction?
AP: The Chiefs will win this game because of their running attack. Ideally, we see 40-plus carries from Peyton Hillis and Charles because that means the Chiefs are doing what they want -- running the ball. That's how they'll win this game. That said, they'll lose if they get behind early in the game. They are not built to come back and struggle when they're in a pass-only mode. Score prediction: 23-20, Chiefs.