THE NSLU: Randomness
David Bell – Avery, ID
Rambling Around (Bear with me)
Jarrad Davis Wending back to the draft, 2017
Over the weekend, The Lions played the Giants, the former winning handily. Part of their Lion defense toughness is due to the former OLB, now ILB — Jarrad Davis. I had the same view of Davis if you recall and felt he would be a perfect fit for KC inside. Why am I talking about Davis? Well, follow along
Davis in 2 starts at ILB for the Lions, has become an integral player on the inside for the Lions. Out of the Gate. He is a very physical player and Versus the Giants, he had 6 tackles and one sack. He left late in the game due to concussion protocol. He walked off the field and to the clubhouse but due to the injury, he was not allowed to speak to the press. I like Davis very much and hope this is merely a concussion. I have not heard more. Davis was covering a kick, and shoulder butted a Giant player and the collision knocked him into the path of the runner. His head struck the runners knee or thigh pad. My idea for the draft was to ensure we obtained a top ILB. Reasoning? We were exposed inside and outside both. Inside, we had DJ. Now, this was DJ’s 2nd Achilles tear but he is Back. I did not doubt that he would be. He stated he would be and he is. But we were still lacking his replacement and in addition, the man to play next to him. I like Ramik Wilson a lot but with the uncertainty about DJ at the time and the fact that he was nearing the end of his career. Of course, the Mahomes pick put any such consideration aside.
The Outside Linebacker’s
At the same time? Justin Houston, another All-Pro and HoF talent, was coming off Injury. I believed that he would be fully recovered and he is. However, approaching the draft the fact that he was rehabbing was a concern. Add to that Tamba Hali’s knee(s) that was scraped again– he is still not back(as I feared would be the case) which leaves Dee Ford and Frank Zombo or a rookie. So here we have an exposure that exists to this early point in the season. Hali won’t be back until week 7; we are, exposed for this reason. It’s not all sour applies but my general impression of Dee Ford is just this — Ford is not playing with the ferocity necessary to get beyond a basic journeyman level OLB. Time for Kpass(#1)? May it arrive soon.
Back to the Draft Profile #2
Consider that I was certain Houston would recover but Hali is near retirement and wouldn’t be ready to role at the time the season opened. Consider as well that though I have believed Ford would improve enough to get beyond a below average OLB, it was not a certainty. Enter the draft thoughts on this, and obtaining a top OLB. I could name names but there were 4 or 5 players that I would have shot for. JJ Watt’s brother being the lowest on the list. My Choice? He was taken by Atlanta, Takkarist McKinley. As important as the Chiefs trading up for Mahomes, Atlanta moved strongly forward and traded up to take McKinley in round one, at #26. This points to my reason for selecting the following in the order the Chiefs read the players and positions in the Draft: CB, ILB, OLB, and then a QB. For me? Completing building the defense to the top performer in the NFL was of utmost importance and if I could have acquired both Davis and McKinley by trading up, I would have done that. Which would most likely had me miss on Jones but I would have acquired two top performers of my 3 top needs(according to my draft profile.
Exposures For Week 3?
- OLB with Ford in.
- Slot CB with Gaines in.
Some Player observations
Daniel Sorensen: Sorensen is your basic utility knife Safety, CB, Dime, Linebacker, anything goes player. We need him badly and he is a “Chief”. He is so football savvy you can’t help but love him.
Eric Murray: We need Murray to develop quickly and adjust to the speed of the Pro game as a starter type. I think we saw progress in the game against Philly but he did give up one play(well, it was a great catch by the receiver that went for a bunch of yards. The rest of the game? Pretty good. He had two passes defended. Plus, it appears that the opposing teams are picking on the secondary where Murray is defending along with attacking the slot.
Phillip Gaines: Gaines playing slot has not shown what he did 2 seasons ago. I can’t write this off yet, but he absolutely is a weakness if he continues the way he has played. Coming up? He will be attacked by Phillip the LA whiner time and again and Gaines must be on top of it, or the Chiefs will have a horrible day in this regard. on the slot CB.
Back Again to My Draft Profile #3
If you will, please, follow along. If you go back to what I wanted to do with the draft and who it was I wanted as CB and of course in my great expertise at this, where GMs refer to my knowledge, I wanted to draft Sidney Jones. Well, okay, seeing the exposure and due to present personnel, I felt that Jones would drop far enough in the draft to go get him and he is a sure bet starter. Only problem is, he had an Achilles tear himself and at best won’t be able to be ready til after game 6 or 8. I was willing to wait for him but Pederson went out and got him. Fine pick. I am not sure how far Eligwe is from getting significant number of snaps but watching him on S/T’s the choice was a good one. I want him in games for his role though. Gets some exposure to NFL Play. If I had used my pick in round 1 to get Davis and then again traded up to get in front of Atlanta, I would have used 2 current picks plus futures, maybe 4 current picks. I would not have been able to obtain Jones.
While I am at it? Doug Pederson
Doug Pederson was what others called a fake OC at KC. A fake coach? Many had expletives for the man. Pederson is proving the opposite to be the case and has done an excellent job building a program at Philly.
Ramik Wilson, ILB
I think Ramik Wilson is doing fine but we need to break in the next man so we have it set up this way: and that is Reggie Ragland (Ragland, see below).
Patrick Mahomes, QBOTF
None of these observations have anything to do with trading up to buy in Patrick Mahomes. He appears to me to be a very top notch choice. Okay, that is the down and dirty. With my view of things, we would have gotten a QB. It might have been Webb. But we PM’d it. I am good with that. I think Mahomes will be an extremely good (or much better) QB when he arrives. Al Smith will be KC’s QB through 2021, my view.
Reggie Ragland, ILB-OTF
Ragland was one of those guys. Now I liked Jarrad Davis over Ragland but the Chiefs lucked into being able to trade for him and he was my 2nd choice inside and there was a third and fourth as well. Essentially? We got a round 1 pick, who drifted to low round 2 because of the knee injury), for a 4th round pick. All is good in the Kingdom.
Chiefs went out and traded for Ragland and I am good with that. We need him to get to full practice and then to the active roster. I think he will help be a terror inside against the run and I have no doubt in my mind that all the doubters are wrong about his ability to drop into coverage. Looking at game tapes, and viewing all plays in about 7 or 8 games, I am convinced that his acquisition is an important factor the Chiefs D. But: he is still on the IR.
Reality Check David! Terrance Mitchell: Mitchell really came on in 2016 and has played well in 2017, and the “Chiefs” are fine with that! He is being tested and is succeeding. . I think he will be okay opposite Peters, another Dorsey acquisition, literally for “free.”
Ukeme Eligwe & Tanoh Kpassagnon
I like what I have seen but we need them to develop into a starters. But thus far on S/T’s, they are playing like the holy terror to the opposition receiving team – they are already making a difference. Both Eligwe and Kpass are unknowns to me at the time of the draft, Ragland and Davis were not. (so, Ford #2 eh?)
CHIEFS FANS yeah, they are special!
Looking at the Injury Report
When I look at the injury report? things are looking up, though I am concerned about Morse, who appears to need another week with the foot injury. Morse (foot), Ford (Shoulder), Ragland (knee, rehab), Hali (Knee) – ONLY Morse was DNP. Thus far, throughout the preseason and the first 2 games, the Chiefs have been very healthy. We have players about ready to emerge from injury recovery and the big loss of course, is Eric Berry.
Offense- Center Stage? Ah, Fulton
With Fulton? We are, well, okay. We miss Mitch Morse of course. He is our best weapon as far as the Offensive Line is concern. So. Expect to see runs up the middle. Might work well mixed in with some play action. I would really like to see that. Of course, Al Smith is best out of the shotgun, not under center. Also, up-tempo benefits the Chiefs(as I noted game after game last season).
The Offensive Line as Constituted
Everyone is lamenting about the “poor” Offensive Line Play v the Eagles. And, yes, the first half, things looked awful at times. Smith was taken down 3 times in the 1st half. But, there are “buts.”
- The Philly Defensive Front is very, very good. They are probably 6 deep, vis-a-vis men who would start anywhere in the NFL.
- We were missing Mitch Morse. A huge factor.
- Mitch Schwartz had a really tough time on the right – and there was a reason.
- The Right side of the offensive line was facing the very best of their Left Front. Think on that.
- Nagy and Co. Made an adjustment in the second half.
- Even with mistakes and missed blocks, 4 sacks, the Chiefs offense scored 27 points and won the game. I think everyone needs to take a huge, deep breath, do some in place breathing meditation and think on that. I predicted the Chiefs would average more than 28 PPG. They are still very much on track. If they do that, and thus far, they are demonstrating that ability–albeit with 69 points scored by the offense and no points by the Chiefs Defense, I would propose that things are absolutely not as bleak as is being written, commented and observed by pundits, fans and authors. Again, see item #2 and #3.
Is There a Bright Side?
Overall, the Chiefs Offensive Line performed very well over 2016 and of course, now into 2017. Even v. Philly. Seth Keysor’s piece posted here on ArrowheadOne points out how well the basic OL performance truly was in 2016:
Last season, Keysor wrote an “apology Letter Article about LDT here:
LDT has turned into a really fine OG. See Seth Keysor’s write up on Laurent, here:
So okay, if Schwartz had a tough game but LDT strutted, things are looking up as a complete picture, even with Witzman in as a sub. Hurry back, Parker Ehinger. Yes, unlike others who have totally washed on Ehinger, I have not. The same was true for me with Fisher and LDT. Even looking at Ehinger getting back his game feet soon, he will continue to be the weak point on the front five but his growth and maturity at NFL Speed should show rapid improvement. That’s a pretty solid offensive line when you step back and take a look: Fisher, Ehinger, Morse, LDT and Schwartz. I then go back and think about what we had to put up with in 2016 (Jah Reid) and it really stands out that the Chiefs tied with the Raiders in PFFs OL ranking for 2016 – the two best in Pass protection. Huh.
The Offense Overall? Grade A
Al Smith has two solid games under his belt. His offense has scored 69 points. The Chiefs have two wins. Smith has not thrown an INT. He has gone long and hit the jackpot. V. Philly it was there and overthrown(Hill). I like what I am seeing from Al and he will be around as KC’s starter past 2018 if he does not falter.
What About the Chargers?
This is going to be a tougher game for KC. They are traveling 2 times zones west. Facing a tougher than the average fan thinks Charger team on their Home ground. Well, that is a misnomer but still. Rivers has added receiver talent and he is going to try to take this game aerial. Which may force the Chiefs to do the same. What would be best? Al Smith and Co to move the chains and the ball, first down by first down, for 7 minutes per possession and score 6. If they do that, it keeps Rivers off the field. It gives them the ToP and plays executed advantage. The rest depends on the defense. I see the Chiefs winning, 31-20. If it ends in a shootout? Who the hell knows what the score could be. Let’s hope my prediction is a close proximate.
Best to all… thanks for checking in. The ramble was, well, just that. I was thinking of the upcoming game and these thoughts struck me, with “randomness.”
David Bell – Avery ID.
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