In a year where the defense finally seems to have gotten the better of the offense Kansas City Chiefs dominated the San Francisco 49ers’ top-three defense in a A 44-23 win.

Chiefs have demonstrated the value of adaptation. Other teams from high level defenders relied more and more on their defenders to get rid of underinvestment in attack, but the Chiefs were active in replacing turnovers. Without Tyreek Hill, the Chiefs saw fit to sign Yuja Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdez-Scantling, both of whom topped 100 yards against the 49ers.

Other teams rely on their quarterback; the bosses let him

Meanwhile, Aaron Rodgers hasn’t seen much from his developing rookie receivers or the Packers’ signing to replace Davante Adams, and Lamar Jackson is struggling to connect with anyone other than Rashad Bateman or Mark Andrews — and it’s not enough.

It’s not exactly on any team’s front office. The Packers went out and signed receivers, adding a number of new faces, experienced and otherwise, to the roster. Baltimore added two tight ends with pass catcher and DeMarcus Robinson. Like Smith-Schuster or Valdez-Scantling, these additions weren’t going to sell tickets.

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But the Chiefs already had a cohesive plan when they decided to trade Tyreek Hill to the Dolphins. Their offense didn’t so much replace Hill as come up with a new plan with the players they had on hand, knowing Valdez-Scantling’s speed didn’t mean he could fill Hill’s role. Instead, each player fills a role, and the combination of those parts creates an offense just as deadly as the one starring Hill.

It’s not easy and it takes the right elements to succeed, but it’s a combination of finding ways to get by and following a plan. We haven’t seen these other offenses do the same with the pieces they’ve added, just hoping that a regular offensive game will allow their elite defenders to settle.

The 49ers trade for Christian McCaffrey looked impressive, but it wasn’t enough

49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan is often compared to Chiefs head coach Andy Reid when it comes to developing offenses that find ways to succeed. But his attempts to do the same failed – one of the reasons they decided this way trade the farm for Christian McCaffrey.

McCaffrey was impressive in his 49ers debut, going 62 yards from scrimmage after just one flight and one night to learn the play. But it’s worth noting that his backups in Carolina, Chuba Hubbard and D’Onta Foreman, combined for 218 yards in the Panthers’ win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Current 49er Jeff Wilson and former 49er Jerick McKinnon combined for 102 yards on 11 combined touchdowns.

Stars win games, and it’s difficult to create an effective offense without firepower – Shanahan knows that better than anyone – but the Chiefs dismantled one of the most impressive defenses in the league after losing a top-three receiver. The 49ers gave up an entire draft class for a player who couldn’t stop the bleeding.

In most years, this would be a statement that offense is king in today’s NFL. Or maybe this is how the year will play out. But for now, it’s an emphatic declaration that good teams make plans and great teams adapt them.