Kansas City Chiefs: Preseason Observations

Screen Shot 2016-07-24 at 9.35.52 PMKansas City Chiefs: Preseason Observations

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As the Chiefs prepare for their final preseason game, it’s a great time to take stock and see where the Chiefs are and what could very well be in store for them this season.

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Elephants in the Room

Screen Shot 2016-08-28 at 4.57.25 PMEven without Jamaal Charles, the offense looks great. Alex Smith is a near Pro Bowl Quarterback when he has time to throw. Who knows how much Charles has left in the tank. If he is close to his former self, this offense could be an elite offense. Why the change? Andy Reid can point to time in the system and that is certainly a solid factor, but that ignores the elephant in the room. Really, two elephants. The first elephant is LDT. He looks like the game is finally clicking for him. The second elephant is Mitchell Schwartz. The addition of Schwartz reminds me a lot of when the Chiefs signed Willie Roaf. The addition of Roaf kicked a very good Left Tackle in John Tait to the Right Tackle spot. The offensive line went from a very good line to an all-time top ten line. With Schwartz and the growth of LDT, the Chiefs line could go from well below average to possibly the back end of the top ten. The wildcard is Parker Ehinger. The good news is that Ehinger seized the RG spot early and hasn’t let go. However, he has to give the Chiefs, at worst, slightly below average play. Poor play will really hurt the Chiefs. I am fairly comfortable with Zach Fulton and Jah Reid being the swing lineman off the bench, but I don’t think either one is real starting material.

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Defense in Transition

Then we come to the defense. Are you ready for the flip? Until/unless Berry and Houston return in form, the Chiefs defense is in trouble. The offense is going to have to carry the team, perhaps for the whole season. Get ready for some 35-28 shootouts. The Chiefs have yet to play a good offense and yet haven’t looked good defensively, except against a poor Chicago team. There are troubling signs aplenty on the defense. Some highlights there. Paging Mr. Ford, Mr. Dee Ford? You have an elite first step, but wow. You are like a pet rock. I am not seeing the growth. You might not even make the team. Phillip Gaines? You have talent and play well when healthy. Speaking of healthy, that doesn’t seem to be your thing. The Chiefs are desperate for you to be healthy. Without good second Cornerback play, Marcus Peters will have to buy his own football to get his hands on one. Speaking of Cornerbacks. How do you spend a 3rd, 4th and 6th round draft picks on Cornerbacks and make a late trade for another one? With all the draft picks John Dorsey has spent on CB’s, the Chiefs shouldn’t need to trade a late pick for another one. This is a very troubling sign.

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Random Thoughts

Other random thoughts. Justin March is Derrick Johnson’s eventual replacement. He is out of place playing beside DJ. Aaron Murray, see Dee Ford. Murray is another player that I am not seeing enough growth out of. The acquisition of Nick Foles might have sealed your fate and Tyler Bray’s. You may very well see a QB roster of Smith, Foles, and Hogan. Speaking of Nick Foles. His signing might be very important should Alex Smith be injured for a couple of games. Alex Smith is a much better QB than most people give him credit for. He is the kind of player who is going to be appreciated more when he is gone. When you see a new QB forcing balls into tight windows and getting picked off, people will be saying “You know, if Smith was at Quarterback…”. Enjoy Smith while you have him. He is a good Quarterback.

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Super Bowl Aspirations

So where do the Chiefs rate? I consider them a 2nd tier playoff team. They have legitimate Super Bowl aspirations, but could stumble and fall out of the playoffs. Both the offense and defense are potential top 10 units, but the defense’s rating is dependent on Berry reporting in shape, Houston coming back and playing well before the middle of the season as well as solid play from the 2nd CB spot. Folks, enjoy where the Chiefs are right now. You can legitimately dream of a Super Bowl for the first time in a long time.

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On a personal note, I want to thank Laddie for inviting me to be a part of this website. I enjoy sharing my thoughts with you all and hearing what you have to say. Go Chiefs!

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  • berttheclock

    Welcome, welcome, welcome. Laddie has pulled some magic out his hat and brought the Great Merlin out of retirement. Great to see you here and an excellent breakdown above. You really did not have to shake any rust off your work.

    • Merlin

      Aww thanks bert. I always enjoy your postings. I was waiting to see if you were going to comment on the elephant analogy and what coach used ‘dancing elephants’ as his description of offensive lineman.

      • berttheclock

        Oh yes, George Young of the NY Giants who said big guys last longer than little guys. That used to be part of Big Roy’s comments at the KC Star when he kept blasting the Chiefs for taking Dexter. That ties in with UCLA under Prothro who did believe in the “little, but, gritty” philosophy and even beat USC with it and Gary Beban until he realized he could no longer beat USC unless he brought in far larger players. With the Rams, Protho only wanted “elephants” in the room.

        • berttheclock

          By the time both Vermeil and King Carl were with UCLA, it became their mantra of recruiting “elephants”.

          • berttheclock

            The great KU football team of 1960 which beat the then ranked Number One team in the land, Missouri, 23-7 had 185 pound OGs. Hadl, McClinton, Coan and the fullback, their starting backfield, all weighed well over 200 pounds. I had a frat brother who weighed 190 and he played TE. He came back after losing to Syracuse, 14-7, and bemoaned the fact that during the game he had to block a 250 pound opponent and he said it wore him out.

          • mnelson52

            I see that as a problem at ILB opposite DJ other than Mauga.

  • berttheclock

    Your point about selecting 3 DBs in the draft, then, almost at the last minute trading for some needed experience is troubling as you say. Dorsey and Reid were, apparently, seeing something missing at St Joe. The final 53 and the PS will say much more.

  • drwillez37

    Welcome to Arrowheadone.com…it’s good to see your analysis and I agree with you on March and I’ve always been a fan of him..speaking of fans of players how bout LTD I’ve been touting him around for awhile ever since I first read about him And his academic achievements. The guy could be a doctor but here he is cracking skulls in the trenches. We can dream and we are in for a wild ride this season.

  • tm1946

    Appreciate someone noticing the late addition of a CB with the deep investment from the last draft. Hogan, nice kid but if a team wants to carry him on their 53 man roster, after grabbing him off our practice squad…. they are well past desperate for the 2016 season. Cut Dee Ford, doubt it, to much hype and ego but back to the bench on running plays, who would notice him gone.

    • mnelson52

      Dadi

  • berttheclock

    Lyle Graverson made an excellent point this morning about some of the deficiencies of various LBs. He mentioned they do have excellent speed to play sideline to sideline, but, lack the power to be able to take on offensive blockers in the run game. So, should a hole open and a RB is driving through it with lead blockers ahead, he has a very good chance for a long gain. Dorsey is still going to have to address this problem or OCs will just ram their runners up the gut and hope DJ can be contained.

    • drwillez37

      That’s where having Eric Berry is such an Iimportance he’s basically an additional LB in the secondary

      • berttheclock

        Remember how effective Brandon Flowers was when they switched him to the middle. He is showing the same type excellence for the Bolts in preseason by moving inside.

        • mnelson52

          I can’t remember where I read it, but somewhere I saw where it was a difference between night and day when they moved him inside. Looking much better.

  • berttheclock

    My main concern for the offensive line is how well Ehinger will be able to stand up to bull rushes. I fear the Texans game when Vince Wilfork, their NT will move from facing Morse to pounding into Ehinger and allowing their excellent LBs to rush through the gap. With the vast improvement of Brock Osweiler and their young very fast wide outs, the Texans game may well come to a shoot out.

    • PaulfromnorthMO

      Hey Bert, I don’t know if you can rewatch the game, but on our TD run in the 1st half, number 77, Devey, was lined up on EF72’s left shoulder. After all the comments about his play on previous teams, I didn’t expect to see him in.

      • berttheclock

        Many of those comment were laughers about his lack of ability. But, as we all know, a change of coaching has helped many a player.

        • berttheclock

          King Dunlap, a Reid pick in Philly, was considered by the Bleeding Green fans to be a bust. He only ended up with the Bolts as a backup need, but, suddenly, turned into a very good LOT for them. Their starting ROT had been considered to be of much lesser quality with other teams in his early years, but, has added power to the Bolts. Just saw where he suffered an injury in their last preseason game. If he goes down, that could hurt the Bolts and help the Chiefs.

        • PaulfromnorthMO

          And like Fisher and LDT, some of those smaller school guys just need more time

          • berttheclock

            I have mentioned this before, but, speaking of Fisher coming from Central Michigan, the excellent LOT of the Niners came from the same school and it took him at least 4 to 5 years to make the Pro Bowl. He gave up many whiffs his first two years with the Niners.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            In this day and age, the younger set display very little patience, in almost every aspect of life. It also holds true on these fansites. That being said, I’ve pretty much lost patience with Dee Ford. I would be different if there seemed to be progress, but I’m seeing less effort as well.

          • berttheclock

            Do you know the current topic over at AP is whether Dorsey should sign Paul Kruger, the OLB (high priced) from the Browns who has just been cut.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            I have my doubts we could afford him. Was he cut in a salary cap move?

          • berttheclock

            Yes, and his 5 year deal began in 2013. He signed a $40.5 M deal with a large signing bonus and $13 M guaranteed. So, his annual was just over $8.1 M, but, he only received 3 years of it. That is why so many players ask their respective agent to obtain as much guaranteed money as they can up front.

          • berttheclock

            That, plus, youth movement. The Browns are being run by so-called baseball whiz kids who rely more on stats than common sense. Funny reading comments at the Plain Wrapper concerning older players being moved. They have suffered to the point that they believe anyone with the Browns is not pulling his weight. I read such negatives concerning Schwartz when he left for KC. “Cut him, never needed him, over the hill, etc, etc, etc” They are posting the same about Kruger. “Lack of production, etc, etc, etc”.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            Well, we never expected competence from the Browns, did we? I think Schwartz will be just fine for us for a few years and if JARD believes they can improve us with further additions, I’m not going to argue!

          • I am looking at OL moving to the NFL not “game ready” due to the offenses now mounted at the collegiate level. Keep in mind Fish and Joeckel in the draft. I wanted the Chiefs to select Luke. He was from a major school and then injured out of the gate his rookie year. I see OL taking development time now more than we would see in the past. The Chiefs certainly have that problem with a complicated offense and playbook. That said, the OC, ie Morse, picked it up quick(but from an easier to manage position responsibility. LD-T was coming out of Canada so there was an even greater break-in period involved. That Fulton started in 2014 tells us something of the competition and fit for the Chiefs at that time anyway because though he is a decent enough football player, his fit for the offense isn’t good(speed, slow feet). I like what I am seeing of Bosch for the most part and I think he is going to be fine. He will be challenged by the better opposition but the break-in time will be a single season it appears to me, and he will progress quick to an experienced level by the time we reach mid-season(my view). The man has appropriate technique, some things to avoid, and a football mind. He get’s it and that is why he will start at LOG>

          • berttheclock

            When I think of Luke, I recall seeing him in his first game against the Chiefs when he was on the right side. Suddenly, Houston loomed in front of him with Catapano trailing. Luke appeared to freeze trying to decide what to do. Both roared past him and slammed into Gabbert.

          • ah the rookie freeze… well known defect.

  • berttheclock

    Just read a funny stat about the snap counts of the Bears game. Did anyone know what offensive player of the Chiefs had two defensive snap counts in that game? If you mention Kelce, Laddie will try his best to forward a Kewpie Doll to you. He was brought in for two expected Hail Mary plays.

    • mnelson52

      I wasn’t aware of that. I do see why he would be though. I could see him on one side and maybe Ross on the other side for Hail Mary plays.

  • berttheclock

    For whatever it is worth. Jeron Johnson, safety, had the most snap counts against the Bears. 44. He came to the Chiefs on August 5th, so, he really has needed more reps. He was an UDFA with the Seahawks, then, played for the Redskins, where he blocked a punt which led to a TD for the ‘skins. Another player Toub will like.

    • PaulfromnorthMO

      I mentioned watching the game, the entire game is up on youtube, it’s the Chiefs version with Trent Green.

      • berttheclock

        Hey, you mentioned seeing Terrence Smith make a good play. Could he become a sleeper?

        • PaulfromnorthMO

          His body type looks more the thumper. I guess it’s possible but we have so many good ILB’s……

          • our problem is, Mauga is the best among them for the MIKE. Wilson, DJ and March all have speed but are not matched up(yet to the task of plugging a hole, taking on a tackle or guard and stuffing the play. That’s where someone mentioned the fact earlier (last week?) and I see the point. But also I see league direction and speed kills so if we can get a punch out of March/WIlson for example… we need one of those guys to completely surpass the other and for both to surpass Josh. We then have Josh and Zombo(he is just too slow for the outside now, my opinion). To be sure, I am with the speed and youth movement. We have the tools for a 4-3 as well(Chris Jones makes that possible) They actually could swap out of the 3-4 and shift entirely. Our LB crew could align with that, vis a vis, how long Houston is out, how well Hali comes back. DJ, Mauga, DJA and Wilson for example plus Zombo is fine for depth. That is not saying that I want to go to the 4-3. I am big on the 3-4 with the OLB ability, right? I am big on Chris Jones though too.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            I agree and it has been noted that KC plays over half our defensive snaps in the nickel or other sub package, so I wonder just how valuable the true mike is any more. If our DL is able to plug the middle consistently and push everything outside, then the speed has even more value.
            We seem to play in a 4-3 quite a bit, and Saturday there were a few plays with 7 DB’s, 2 DL and 2 LB.

          • berttheclock

            That is the old version used by the great Fritz Shurmer who taught Jim Johnson who went on to the Eagles and worked with Reid. However, he used 5 LBs at times behind the 2 DLs and even placed a LB over the center’s nose. Really confused the offensive line.

          • I wouldn’t mind having a Lanier or Butkus or NItschke type ILB to toss in the mix… 🙂

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            lol Do they even make those any more?

          • Brandon Chester

            How KC is set up tho, a run stopping ILB isn’t a dire need. Last year the lineup of Wilson DJ, and the big three held Adrian Peterson to his 2nd worst career game with 20+ carries. This is largely because our DL is asked to clog the run lanes up. Which is what they should continue to do. Wilson had the most tackles on the team that game as well.

            Preseason is used experiment. Sutton asking his DL to create pressure then allows to the OL to get to the second level. If they can hold their ground in the run game as previously done last year it’ll be a good year. Make your opponent predictable. If you put them in third and long it’ll make them predictable. No team in 2015 had more pressure on third down. That means Sutton dials up the blitz.

            I agree with zombo but unfortunately I don’t see Sutton sticking him inside. We are stuck with him at 3-4 OLB.

            We have the tools for a 4-3 but Sutton will most likely not run it. He will continue to develop Jones as a 3-4 DE. Largely based on the contract of Poe. The chiefs have to know they can’t afford him after the Wilkerson and Cox contracts. I’d like for us to run a hybrid defense. Tho I think sutton is more simplistic then we all think. A lot of man to man(chiefs ran more of that then anyone), a lot of run clogging by 3-4 DL. A lot of blitzes on third down. That’s sutton in a nutshell.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            Thanks, the Minnesota game is the one I’ve been trying to remember. That was the one with Wilson where he played so well. I never figured why they pulled him after that game. I like Ramik better next to DJ and let March be DJ’s reserve.

          • I forgot to get back to this. Zombo played inside in 2015 some. he is better inside than out. He is too slow now to really do OLB at a pace. He can set the edge. He is not a pass rusher from outside. I do not agree that the run stopper beside DJ is not necessary. That is the worry with DJA and March but why March has a leg over DJA. Ramik is back on the PS. I like that they didn’t lose him. That Barrington was available should tell you about the run stopping. He is a known hitter. Has head-hunter in him. When they lined up Wilson and DJ, was not the team match up where a Lanier type would be necessary. Not enough inside runs with a very good line. It is a decent line but Pederson get’s his own, way I look at MN anyway. A good pass defense front against our front three plus blocking for the run, is where having a guy like Barrington fits. I too think it’s up to Sutton to figure pressure in 2016 early days differently — In the right scheme, Fords speed, plus Chris Jones in the mix with Howard(Poe taking out the middle double team — I think means “PRESSURE”. Here I think Bailey is going to sit more and more. It would be great to get RN-R on the field to rest Poe enough where Poe isn’t worn down by week 12. That would be great. I think he can do it… gets more reps during games and gives Poe a bit of ease. Somehow I think when it counts, Sutton is going to use Chris Jones a lot more each game as the season progresses. Last? I think Sutton’s subtly is hard to catch but it is int he player mix. He will invent it as he goes along(Don’t get stuck on Stupid and we will get to Houston’s return(I hope). Or could it be, they were hiding what Ford accomplished so that it was something that is pooh-poohed by opponents? Are the Chiefs that tricky? Or is Ford still a one trick pony in other words?

          • Brandon Chester

            That’s just the thing with Zombo. I can’t find any article or statistical data on him playing inside what so ever. I think he could. Unfortunately I haven’t seen any proof that he has. PFF has him listed as an edge defender. So that to me would mean he’s taken more snaps as an edge guy at least for 2015.

            I only make that judgment based on how often KC plays nickel. The second LB is probably the least important position on the defense as of now. Just because we’ll play more nickel then base defense. Barrington does hold some promise. Its March’s job to lose tho. Nothing about March says run stopping LB.

            I’ve heard of this “Ford holding back” non sense. A player should never be asked to hold back. I want him to dominate every snap every play every down on every second of every game. None of this “hey hold back so they’ll underestimate us”. I think Ford isn’t someone that can do that. He has favorable match ups. I hope he proves me wrong. He’s a decent player but some of those pressures should of been sacks. Then less people would complain.

          • I was watching ythe games multiple…. there was a reason… mauga or dj or both…. he subbed 4… not saying ford did or was asked to… some far fet he’d reason for him not to have been taught, staff, Hali or houston… I am now non-plus on this… if they didn’t need a more head- on stuff blocker, eat,wm head on they wouldn’t have signed barrigngton And released wilson…. only to bring back wilson to the ps

          • Brandon Chester

            Not saying we weren’t in need of one. Just saying if March continues to excel then their really was no need for one. March is a coverage LB. Our Defensive lineman are asked to clog the lanes. Even last year Mauga wasn’t exactly the best run stopping LB. In fact he was better in coverage opposed to his run defense. Barrington could of been brought in for special teams. He brings more versatility to the table then RW. Wilson couldn’t beat out March so he was expendable. He doesn’t have any real knack for special teams either.

            Zombo only had 200 snaps in 2015. Which was roughly 16.9% of the defensive snaps. If he did sub in then it was on a very low snap count. Not enough to make me feel confident with him as that ILB we are looking for.

          • you are mis-understanding my points about Zombo. Watching him pre-season, it appears he has lost speed(OLB). Still a solid player as a team contributor.

            I agree about march but March, Wilson and DJA are all of similar size and the ability to take on blockers and plug holes needs a different type of physique player. Could have? Is March the type of player who is of that size? He fits what Wilson and DJA fit — the new speed LB. Barrington is a different player. They don’t make such a move for a S/T player btw.

          • Brandon Chester

            No I get it, I’m just saying Zombo is our OLB. We haven’t experimented with him this preseason at any other position other then OLB. I don’t think we’d see him in their at ILB because he’s lost a step. Maybe next year, not sure.

            Oh man u don’t see the reoccurring theme here? Ackers over cooper? Cheaper and Ackers can contribute on special teams. DAT over streetet? Special teams and $$, knile Davis over Darrin Reaves? Special teams, Sam Barrington over Wilson? Price and special teams.

            I also think you are putting to much “talent” into Sam Barrington. Did you know the reason he accumulated those 40+ tackles in 2014, was because he allowed 72% of all of his targets be caught. That to me doesn’t scream “Hey we MUST have this guy on our defense!”, its March’s job to lose. If he never loses it then Barrington would just be a special teams contributor. Maybe to give zombo a breathier or Sorenson. Who both expect to play more defense then special teams.

          • I think. Then u think. Roo much back and forth to accomplish what?. Never on this did I state zombie was an ilb. He is an Olb and a couple times serve admirably, but he also played inside when he was called on. Zombie is vip for toub.

            Did you catch that Barrington is here to stop the run. Did I state he was a complete ilb? No. I stated he was brought to be an lb to contest blockers and meet runners in the hole. He will be part of s/t. March has more well rounded skill. As far as whatever gets on your head, the Chiefs didn’t bring him for s/t,s.. he is young, can be coached up, has run stopping talent, and they needed that in the mix with Josh mauga out. Mauga is no great shakes by the by, at drooping into coverage in other than a zone drop eIther(his int, was oh look what I got mom and he ran out of gas abt the 15). March, dja and wilson all met dorsey,s speed factor(2013 statement abt bldg speed in the draft).money is surely A factor who said not? Can the player do s/t? Who said not? What I didn’t say was they signed Barrington do s/t…and they didnt.

          • Brandon Chester

            Agree to disagree.

          • Brandon Chester

            One thing i will say is don’t sell the farm based on one move Dorsey makes. See what happened with Streeter?

          • okay. you had the last word. you win.

          • Brandon Chester

            Lol I don’t think every conversation has to end with a win or loss with me and you. I just took the route of ending the conversation, because A its game day B. You think I’m pulling things from the type of my head, and C on game day alcohol is consumed. No offense to you but the reason I give maybe the extra detail in my comments wasn’t to just justify my reasoning. I had a hard time comprehending your messages. So I was simply trying my best to maybe put that extra umph in the conversation.

            Barrington is a decent player. He has more upside then Wilson. Fun fact I learned about Barrington was the green bay packers were number one in punt coverage in 2014. Barrington was a large part of that. He is a two down LB. My point is KC may not need a run stopping LB because if March works out Barrington might not see playing time.

    • Brandon Chester

      He actually played good as well. Ended up as one of the highest graded defensive players of the game by PFF. That’s important to look at when players like Flemming did not grade well.

  • berttheclock

    The Browns have just released Paul Kruger, their high priced OLB. He would not have to pass through waivers. Any thoughts concerning the Chiefs in the mix?

    • mnelson52

      It might would take more Dorsey magic to find the money.

      • berttheclock

        Being a vet, he will not have to clear waivers so, the lines for him may be a little long.

      • berttheclock

        Perhaps, the Broncos might loan him their “Creative Accounting Bible”.

  • CrispySBC

    I’m surprised at your QB evaluation and am really surprised no one has taken exception to it. IMO, Bray has outplayed both Murray and Hogan (Hogan is definitely safe on the practice squad). Murray has shown a propensity to throw interceptions and fumble the ball. That should lead him out the door in KC. He’s been in the system too long to make the mistakes he consistently makes. Murray’s shown nothing that makes him worth keeping on the 53 man roster. On my imaginary roster it’s: AS11, Foles and Bray with Hogan on the Practice squad.

    • berttheclock

      I didn’t take any exception only due to the photo of Merlin’s cat. He or she appears to be rather feisty and I don’t know if our Bengal male could take her. Our little Burmese would just hide.

    • Hogan will be the keepsake for now. Bray should move to #3 which makes Murray the odd man out.

      • PaulfromnorthMO

        Only if Bray is healthy enough to play, I would hate to see us keep a player on IR three straight years, just can’t see the value in that.

        • agreed…this is presuming he is ready to go and if not, they should just release him.

          • Brandon Chester

            I was for Bray over Murray. As time went on my judgment changed. I thought Murray played better in the first game. If Ross hadn’t dropped that TD pass. Week two I wasn’t pleased with Murray’s obviously lack of height, and ability to control a bad snap under pressure. Reid and penalties made it harder for Murray. Reid called simple routine passes for Murray. One pass to Streater on 3rd and 26. One screen to Brown, one quick slant to someone I can’t remember, where green criticised his low placement of the ball. Game three should be Murray versus Bray.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            Didn’t Murray fumble twice Saturday? I don’t know if he has small hands, but with time and good lanes his passes are pretty accurate. Bray seems more fragile than Brodie Croyle.

          • we’re talking 3rd deep now. And if I go that way(after the 2nd and 3rd pre-season game, I shifted my view from Murray to Bray–because they just draftd Hogan. Unless they keep 5 QB’s. I now think “length” is more of a factor as part of shifting my view. But if Bray is out again IR or unable to play, it’s time to cut bait.

          • PaulfromnorthMO

            I’ve never been a fan of either Murray or Bray. I think they can both be accurate (for the most part) but Murray putting the ball on ground is troublesome. Bray isn’t much use if he’s not available. I don’t know if Hogan will ever amount to anything, but it already seems the other two won’t.

        • Brandon Chester

          The plus side is by keeping more then 1 QB, it brings insurance to the most important position. It’s hard to predict the future of a position. The way Smith runs will eventually get him hurt. Its important to keep options available. We don’t know if Foles will be around for year 2. I’d rather put Bray on IR, keep Murray and place Hogan on the practice squad if the number two spot opens up again next year.

          From a money perspective. That 1.2 million Bray has on its contract in 2017 could be put to good use. Im all for Dorsey creating space for 2017. This goes along with my strong belief that our Superbowl window would stay open if we can find a way to keep Berry and Poe around 1 more year.

    • Kevin Flannery

      Regardless, if the Chiefs get down to the 3rd qb, they are in deep trouble.

      • ladner morse

        Yes…. what I’d call, “Deep Doo-Doo”. 🙂

  • berttheclock

    I don’t see it, but, does anyone think the Chiefs might want to add some “Pot Roast” to the defensive front?

    • berttheclock

      Not even to spell Poe?

    • ladner morse

      If Terrance Knighton is anything like he was two years ago — ABSOLUTELY. But if he’s become a liability then obviously…………

  • mnelson52

    I’m still concerned about the defense. The first two games looked bad. I also can’t get excited about a defense that looked good in their third game against an offense that has scored a total of 29 points in three games.

  • Calchiefsfan

    Welcome Merlin! Nice to see you writing again. Your regular insights have been sorely missed. The improved O line will definitely help, though after watching Geno Adkins truck the LG repeatedly this week, I am concerned about Ehringer. He is definitely the weak spot. I was hoping Murray would show something this preaseason but just haven’t seen it. He, along with Wilson and Ford have been a disappointment. The flip side is the emergence of LDT, Conley and even some improvement by Demetrius Harris.
    The need for quality depth at CB is troubling. The rookies certainly weren’t showing much in the preseason games. Let’s hope Gaines can stay healthy.
    Speaking of rookies, Chris Jones is going to be fun to watch this season. The guy appears to be an absolute monster! I think we also see Hill getting more and more playing time as he learns the system.
    Anyway, welcome back and nice elephant reference.

    • Merlin

      Thanks cal! Great points. I should add that I am impressing with what Dadi Nicholas has shown. The Chiefs might have something there.

  • berttheclock

    Geoff Schwartz has tweeted he is being released by Detroit.

    • berttheclock

      He, also, said earlier in the year that he and his brother, Mitchell, did not want to play for the same team. But……….

    • Brandon Chester

      I was excited to hear this. I’d sign him and start him at LG.

      • berttheclock

        The reason he became expendable was Baalke of the Niners traded Brandon Thomas, OG, to the Lions for a 4th tier wide out, Kerley, who projects more as a slot for the Niners. I wonder if Dorsey had even considered trading, say, Streater to the Niners for Thomas? He has a great trading relationship with Baalke. Perhaps, Dorsey spoke volumes about the way he feels about the offensive line at present by not trying to make that move.

        • Frank Rodela

          This line has a chance to play together for 2 years before LDT’s contract comes up. I really hope they keep the number of starting combinations to a minimum. If this team can log 16 games with the same starting 5 and they should get better each week.

      • Frank Rodela

        The Law Firm

        • Frank Rodela

          When he was a free agent, and before Ehinger was drafted I suggested a line of Fisher LDT Morse Schwartz and Schwartz

          • berttheclock

            Yeah, but, then, you prefer Bagels with your breakfast, eh?

          • that’s just wrong.

          • berttheclock

            But, tasty. Actually, the brothers have written a book about food and bagels is part of the book. Should they both play in KC at the same time, they could do a chapter on cuisine in the KC area. However, Chris Jones will have the chapter on BBQ.

          • Ya I heard he,d found a BBQ home…. but got to say it nc has it beat(my taste), out in country where I lived, so of yancyville, deer and pig Pickens were pretty near standard fare, my commute to rtp was not bad, 43 miles …like that, youngest son says to this day we nevuh should have moved (to tx),.

          • I recall when you did and I thought that would be a good set up. I still think Geoff would be a good addition for our front 5 (as a starter or depth player). I like his attitude, his football moxy and I know he had wished to remain in KC.

          • drwillez37

            He is said to be the reason his brother choose KC

  • Brandon Chester

    KC just put Garrick Mayweather on waivers. Now we are done to 80. Mayweather had a great week one preseason game. Where he graded positively at run blocking.

    • berttheclock

      May he do very well as a MD and I hope he makes some other team.

  • Brandon Chester

    Did anyone else know Mitchell Schwartz is a follower and supporter of PFF? I found this out last night as three PFF analyst were grading the Jags and Bengals game. They had made a GIF where Joeckel was man handled by Geno Atkins. Schwartz criticized the evaluation because in the play the center may have tripped him. Schwartz later went on to confirm Joeckel’s technique was wrong and his wide base holds him at a disadvantage on the inside.

    I’m starting to trust PFF a little more. Especially after evaluating Jones was the best interior pass rusher and was the 12th best player on their board. Not only that but their evaluation of DJ white as well. In a post summarizing the chiefs rookie corners PFF claimed the 6th round pick could climb up the depth chart in KC. He was the only player we drafted that had a positive grades in coverage and run defense. I was skeptical of this. DJ white had the best coverage grade in the first preseason game. The next week DJ was then asked to play with the ones.

    • berttheclock

      However, for the 2016 draft, they rated Mackenzie Alexander, the CB from Clemson as the 5th highest rated player going into the draft. The Vikings took him at 54. He did have a great INT last night.

      • Brandon Chester

        I don’t think we was fifth. I’ve got the draft sheet right here. He was labeled as the fourth best corner. Right behind Ramsey, Jackson 3, and Hargreaves.

        • berttheclock

          Is that their PFF sheet? Yesterday, I read in the Minnesota comments where he had been listed as 5th best overall. That really amazed me and I thought it might have been a mistake. .

          • Brandon Chester

            Yes, the PFF draft sheet. They had him as their 18th overall best player. Sometimes writers get the stats wrong. As I often do sometimes. Just the other day I seen a bronco’s article that suggested Lynch was the number one QB under pressure. When in fact he was number two. Behind Golsen, who isn’t in the NFL and made his way over to Canada.

          • berttheclock

            Yeah, thought so.

      • Brandon Chester

        On an interesting note. People criticized Alexander’s ball hawking skills as he did not record a INT all through college. He has two in the preseason already.

        • berttheclock

          The one from yesterday showed him behind the wide out in the end zone reaching up and over to pick off the pass.

        • berttheclock

          Chris Harris, Jr was not known for INTs at KU, but………………..

  • berttheclock

    Consider how fast a rising star can fall. In the 2012 NFL draft, the Chiefs took Poe at 11, the Eagles took Fletcher Cox at 12 and the Seahawks selected Bruce Irvin at 15. Then, the Jets took Quenton Coples from Clemson at 16. At first, he starred, only to slip slide away to the point the Jets cut him. Miami swooped and claimed him and thought they had a star, however, they cut him. Then, the Rams, for some strange reason gave him a 2 years $6.5 M contract. The Rams have just cut him.

  • berttheclock

    Simien will start for the Broncos. I hope he emulates the only other former Northwestern QB to start in the NFL. Randy Dean started 2 games for the Giants in ’78 and one game in ’79. He threw one TD pass and 5 INTs and ended up with a 31.5 QB rating.

    • Frank Rodela

      Otto Graham in 1955 is one I hope he does not emulate.

      • berttheclock

        Sharp eyes and a great pickup. I should have written the last QB from Northwestern, not the only one. Yes, Otto did quite well. Thanks for your quick pickup.

        • Frank Rodela

          Wow. That guy is impressive. 4 AAFC championships, 3 NFL championships (10 straight championship games) and 1 NBL (now NBA) championship. Only 20 loses in 10 years.

          • ladner morse

            My father would say that Otto Graham was the greatest QB who ever lived. I grew up seeing those old tapes of him and when we’d play ball in the yard we’d pretend to be Otto. He was “THE” icon of the age. Not until Joe Montana came along did I think their might be a challenger to Otto’s throne.

      • Merlin

        Automatic Otto. He was an all-time great QB, but gets lost due to the ravages of time.

  • berttheclock

    A player from the Colts has just been cut. I thought during the 2015 Mocks he might fit with the Chiefs. He is the six foot LB from Toledo, Junior Sylvestre. He is fast and run well to the sidelines and can cover. Where he has problems is in taking on interior blockers. I thought he might be able to drop back as a safety.

  • Brandon Chester
    • berttheclock

      The LBs for Houston are going to be very tough.

      • Brandon Chester

        Ya they played some good defense. I noticed that. Let’s hope pur defense can take advantage of Brown and Martin out of the lineup. Fuller looked good, he just had a couple of noticeable drops. Which were a red flag for him coming out of college, where he had 10 drops last year.

  • Frank Rodela

    Paul Kruger, released today from Cleveland, should at least be on the minds of the front office.

  • berttheclock

    On September 11th, the Chiefs may well see Joey Bosa play for the Chargers as he has just signed his contract.

    • Brandon Chester

      This is good, wouldn’t want to make it to easy for us. Our interior OL will accept the challenge. Especially if Watt is going to play week 2. As I suspect him to because he’s already already been cleared to practice. Bill O’Brian had to tell Watt, hold your horses man. Respect the doctors orders because we can’t you sustaining any injuries.

      • drwillez37

        Week2 is gonna be the ultimate test for this offense..they are calling Clowney the second coming of Reggie White..But let’s remember how frustrated Watt looked a gain st us in the playoffs

        • Frank Rodela

          And if Clowney can make it to week 2 without being injured.

  • berttheclock

    Rotoworld says the Chiefs have been actively trying to trade Knile Davis, but, have had no takers.

  • Kevin Flannery

    Chiefs Homer here… So if KC is a 2nd tier playoff team, who would be the 1st tier teams in the AFC?
    There’s only one team I think is better in the Brady led Patriots. I can easily argue that KC stacks up pretty well against everybody else. I’m not scared of the 2016 Broncos. The Chiefs will destroy them. The Steelers are overrated and I think the Bengals are better than them but that’s just me.
    Staying healthy is the key. If KC can hold down the fort until Houston comes back, I think they can beat anybody in the playoffs if they’re at nearly full strength.

  • sidibeke

    Great to see you writing here, Merlin! I’ve missed reading your articles.

    • ladner morse

      Me too!

  • berttheclock

    For anyone wanting Dorsey to acquire Paul Kruger, Kruger has a scheduled visit with the Saints today.

    • Frank Rodela
      • berttheclock

        Hey, Frank, I was just reading there was one other reason Geoff Schwartz was cut by Detroit. In addition to bringing in Brandon Thomas who can play both OG and OT, Joe Dahl, their 5th round pick from Wazzoo, this spring, plays both OG and OT as well and has had a fine summer. So, it became a numbers game with the Lions wanting more versatility for their offensive linemen.

        • Frank Rodela

          If I’m not mistaken Geoff plays both positions on the right side of the line. I still say he would make great depth on the line.

          • berttheclock

            I would still like to see Dorsey shore up the LOG position more firmly, while, Ehinger develops and adds strength. With Geoff being 30, it would make sense to bring him in for that purpose. Ehinger is a young man who still has time to learn and improve.

          • Frank Rodela

            While I like the idea I am still on the side of letting Ehinger start. I think the continuity of them playing together this year and into next is more important than worrying about one player needing time in the weight room. I don’t think he will make the Pro Bowl his year but i think he will do a solid enough job that once he gets that time in the weight room, having the starting experience is going to take him that one step further.

        • Frank Rodela

          Kruger is set to visit the Saints today, but the Saints just acquired DE Chris McCain from the Phins’ in a trade. He will try to make a difference in the Saint’s pass rush so where does that leave the need for Kruger?

          • berttheclock

            They have the money and they are becoming a bit desperate to repair their pass rush. So, more the merrier. Put Kruger behind McCain.

  • berttheclock

    The Chargers are expected to have a player on their 53 who could play against the Chiefs. He is Dexter McColl. McColl played for Tulsa. He is a six four safety and has run a 4.6 40. He walked onto the Raiders , but, was cut in 2013. He played Arena ball in 2014, then, went to the CFL where he became a star winning several awards.

    • Frank Rodela

      One player who won’t suit up for the Chargers in week 1 is WR James Jones, cut yesterday

      • berttheclock

        Geez, one minute they give you a one year deal, the next minute it is Adios, Amigo.

  • berttheclock

    Two former players, well, one was a tryout player, for the Chiefs have been cut by other teams. Cyrus Gray has been cut by Atlanta and Andrew East, who competed for long snapper with Winchester. has been cut by the Raiders.

  • Frank Rodela

    Bert, you were saying something about Quentin Coples yesterday…here is a quote from Fisher

    “But out of fairness to a player like Q, I didn’t see him making the team, and that’s exactly what I told him,” Fisher said, via the team’s website. “So I wanted to give him a chance — give him an opportunity — to get out there early to see if he could find work. And if not, we’re going to keep the door open for him.”

    • berttheclock

      Interesting. He was, yet, another player who did not play in that all important third preseason game. That is becoming a sort of writing being written very boldly on the wall for players.

      Yet another reason why checking out the snaps for players in 3rd preseason games can be a form of tea leaf reading.

  • FAX

    One would have to be some sort of bizarre hybrid cross between Helen Keller and Captain Kangaroo not to be aware that scrounging for dbs after drafting a whole litter full is concerning. So, you make a very good point there, Mr. Merlin Merlin.

    If I had to guess (which I do), I’d say that there were simply too many unknowns to make Sutton comfortable as we progressed through OTAs and camp. Would Gaines recover properly? Would the db kittens impress? As time went on, these questions remained sufficiently unanswered to force Dorsey’s hand. More bodies – more competition. Given our situation in the backfield, adding bodies was really our only potential solution.

    I have learned to trust Sutton’s judgement on such matters, however. If Sutton tells Dorsey to bring someone in, it’s probably a good idea.

    Problems in the pass rush department combined with problems in coverage combine to create an insurmountable bag of ouch and lots of first downs for the enemy. We have to do something and I trust Sutton to find a way to get it done.