Offseason to-do list for the Kansas City Chiefs

Eric Eager examines the top offseason priorities for the Kansas City Chiefs, including the re-signing of Eric Berry.

| 9 months ago
(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Offseason to-do list for the Kansas City Chiefs

Despite a season-ending 27-20 loss to the defending Super Bowl champion, the Kansas City Chiefs had a very compelling season. Starting the year with a 1-5 record and a season-ending injury to starting running back Jamaal Charles (79.0 season grade), the Chiefs rattled off 10 consecutive regular season wins, as well as a postseason triumph against the Houston Texans, their first playoff victory since 1993.  Kansas City’s strength remains its defense, which finished the season as PFF’s fifth-highest graded unit, helping them place third in total points allowed.

Justin Houston (91.6 overall grade, 1–100 scale) and Tamba Hali (87.2) were PFF Pro Bowlers as edge rushers, while Derrick Johnson (86.7) and Eric Berry (87.7) returned from injury and significant ailment, respectively, to post Pro Bowl seasons in the middle of the defense. Jeremy Maclin (82.0) supplemented an offense sorely in need of playmakers coming into the season, hauling in 87-of-88 catchable passes in the regular season (the best drop rate in the NFL) and eight touchdowns. D.J. Alexander and Jamell Fleming led a special teams unit that finished in the top six in PFF grades at the conclusion of the regular season, despite jettisoning its top two performers (Kelcie McCray and Josh Martin) from 2014.

In this article, we explore three priority areas for the Chiefs moving into this upcoming offseason, as they look to build upon their third consecutive winning season and second playoff birth in three years:

Upgrades along the offensive line

While the Chiefs finished a respectable 16th in the league in run blocking grades, quarterback Alex Smith (71.9) was under pressure on 37.3 percent of his dropbacks during the 2015 regular season, which was 10th-highest in the NFL. In response, his accuracy percentage dropped from 74.4 (13th in the NFL) to 55.8 (25th) when under pressure. To give Smith and the passing offense more of a chance moving forward, upgrades to the offensive line are necessary.

Despite the Chiefs’ overall success during his tenure, offensive line has been an issue in all three of Andy Reid’s seasons as head coach, with 2013 first overall draft pick tackle Eric Fisher (67.9) failing to grade positively in any of his three seasons. In 2015, he ranked 31st among tackles with a pass blocking efficiency of 94.7 during the regular season, allowing four sacks, two hits, and 27 total hurries. The other tackle spot rotated mostly between Jah Reid (36.2 in 760 snaps) and Donald Stephenson (34.6 in 715 snaps), with neither playing well. Guards Jeff Allen (85.6) and Ben Grubbs (70.9) graded out positively, but neither played over 600 snaps on the season, and were often replaced by Larry Duvernay-Tardif (50.1 in 843 snaps), who’s play left something to be desired. Allen, an upcoming unrestricted free agent, finished tied for the fifth-best run blocking grade (89.5) among guards.  Rookie center Mitch Morse (72.2) graded out in the middle of the pack among centers, and figures to be in Kansas City’s long-term plans.

Getting Grubbs back from injury and re-signing Allen (the third-highest graded guard in free agency) should be sufficient at guard, as should the incumbency of Morse at center. Acquiring at least one starting-caliber tackle in free agency or the draft should be a significant priority this offseason. Solid options such as RT Ryan Schraeder (87.0) of the Falcons, RT Mitchell Schwartz (86.6) of the Browns, and LT Cordy Glenn (85.0) of the Bills exist in free agency, while first-round prospects Ronnie Stanley of Notre Dame and Jack Conklin (only 11 pressures allowed in 2015) of Michigan State will be within the vicinity of their draft position come April.  Manuel Ramirez (86.3) of the Lions, Amini Silatolu (78.3) of the Panthers, and Tony Bergstrom (76.4) of the Raiders are depth options in free agency for the interior of the line.

Retaining key free agents on defense

Berry, Johnson, cornerback Sean Smith (84.2), defensive linemen Jaye Howard (81.6) and Mike Devito (74.2), sub-package defensive backs Husain Abdullah (80.2) and Tyvon Branch (78.2) are all important contributors to the defense and will be unrestricted free agents this coming spring.  While the Chiefs have some cap space (between $25–$35 million) to work with, certainly not all of these players will be retained.

While all four of the safeties in the Chiefs’ rotation (Berry, Ron Parker, Branch, and Abdullah) graded positively in 2015, Berry is both young (27 years old) and a true difference maker. In four full seasons, he has 10 interceptions, three defensive touchdowns, six sacks, nine QB hits, 21 QB hurries, and 141 stops. His retention should be Kansas City’s top priority in the offseason. While the Chiefs used Branch and Abdullah liberally in 2015, much of this playing time can be attributed to the loss of second-year nickel cornerback Philip Gaines (67.9) in Week 3.  The return of Gaines makes Branch and/or Abdullah more expendable this offseason.

Smith has emerged as a solid cornerback since arriving in KC in 2013, finishing 11th and 12th among cornerbacks in cover snaps per reception the last two regular seasons. Smith’s 6-foot-3-inch length and reliability (he missed just two tackles and allowed only 126 yards after the catch in 2015) complement the gambling nature of the shorter (6-foot) Marcus Peters (73.8), whose nine interceptions as a rookie were often overshadowed by what he surrendered (1,057 yards and eight touchdowns) in coverage. The Chiefs’ struggles in coverage during his three-game suspension, along with the lack of similarly-skilled and obtainable options on their current roster, in free agency or in the draft, should put re-signing Smith a close second on the Chiefs’ offseason priority list.

Johnson (33 years old) is getting up there in age, but responded from a 2014 Achilles injury with his second-highest graded season as a pro, and is easily the Chiefs’ best inside linebacker. His 0.56 yards per coverage snap was the best amongst NFL inside linebackers in 2015. Ramik Wilson (60.3 in 130 snaps) and Josh Mauga (67.1 In 527 snaps) would probably take over if Johnson were to leave, with the former being inexperienced and the latter a liability in two seasons as a starter. PFF’s latest mock draft has the Chiefs taking Scooby Wright of Arizona, which would be another option to either complement or replace Johnson in 2016.

While Howard and Devito represent roughly 1,100 snaps of positively-graded play along the defensive line in 2015, the Chiefs play enough 2-4-5 nickel alignment to absorb the loss of one or both of them, especially with the presence of solid linemen Dontari Poe (76.7) and Allen Bailey (74.8) under contract for 2016.

Wide receiver help to complement Maclin

While the addition of Maclin helped the Chiefs put to bed their historic wide receiver ineptitude from 2014, more help is needed in order to move the offense forward in 2016. Albert Wilson (64.5) did force nine missed tackles on 42 receptions (on 69 targets), with just three drops, and while Chris Conley (60.0) caught 23-of-40 targets with two touchdowns and just two drops, their collective productivity would be better-suited for a third or fourth receiver role. Jason Avant (61.9) made some big catches in the Divisional Round of the playoffs, but he will be an unrestricted free agent this spring. While the best free agent option at wide receiver (Alshon Jeffery, 94.2 overall grade) will probably be outside of the Chiefs’ price range, options exist for potential difference makers in the draft, where Leonte Carroo (4.11 yards per route run) of Rutgers and Sterling Shepard (second-best receiving grade in the nation) of Oklahoma should be available in the vicinity of the Chiefs’ draft position in April.

The Kansas City Chiefs broke through in many ways in 2015. From fighting through a very slow start, to winning their first playoff game since 1993, the franchise proved that they belong in the AFC contender conversation moving forward. Upgrades along the offensive line and at wide receiver, along with retaining some of their key defenders, should help them continue to fulfill the promise present since the Andy Reid era started with nine straight wins to begin the 2013 season.

  • Racyman

    The Chiefs have a solid group of core players and even some good depth, in some areas. I totally agree that consistency with the offensive line and giving Alex Smith a much more productive, and consistent number two WR, are the main needs on the offense. Conley could improve enough to fill that number two role, or even Albert Wilson, but I think Wilson has had ample time to step up and play a bigger role, but remains very inconsistent.

    The offensive line mainly needs better depth, as their key starters performed well. The problem was keeping them all on the field as one unit and the continuity just wasn’t there. I do have some optimism about the line improving from last year and don’t feel that they are far off from being a team strength, not a weakness. The Chief’s offense actually performed well, despite of their inconsistencies on the offensive line.

    The passing game actually improved, despite Smith being sacked about as much as any QB in the league. I give Maclin allot of credit for that. We’ve had a chance to now see just how bad Dwayne Bowe has become, barely even making the roster for the Browns, and he was the number one WR for the Chiefs, until this season. Kelce will continue to create some matchup problems and if they can get a productive and consistent number two WR, the passing game should escalate even further.

    • nigganigga

      uuuuuuuhhhhh, no.

      • bossmanham

        Good thoughtful retort here.

    • Eric

      Thanks for reading. You bring up good points, although I think the most important thing for the Chiefs to focus on moving forward is getting Smith and Berry back. Early in the year, when Smith was suspended and Berry was getting his feet under him, the Chiefs defense really struggled. Once Gaines got hurt, it got even worse. Once Smith and Berry returned to form, the Chiefs’ defense returned to dominance. It’s huge to get them back.

      • Brandon

        Smiths price tag should range from 14 million(franchise tag) to what 11-9 million dollars per year? That would leave Lil to no room next season if u include Berry being paid as the top safety in the league (he’ll want earl Thomas money he deserves it) and DJ receiving a decent contract to retire on. As much as I would leave to see a full season with Smith,Gaines, and Peters all healthy playing together thats far from likely considering Kelce,Poe, Fishers contracts are up next year. I’m sure Dorsey will wanna resign Kelce and Fisher Dorsey’s first two draft picks of his GM career. Lord knows we can’t afford the 11.5 5th year option on Eric Fishers rookie contract.

        • Eric

          I think the existence of Josh Norman, Pacman Jones, Trumaine Johnson, Janoris Jenkins, Patrick Robinson and Prince Amukamara (all with grades above 78) in the free agent market, and a similarly strong market at S (Reggie Nelson, Rodney McCleod, George Iloka, Tony Jefferson, Eric Weddle) may make re-signing Smith and Berry less onerous financially than we think, but you bring up good points regarding players down the line. I still think that, especially with the addition of Maclin last year and the “addition” of Charles next year, keeping the secondary together is more important than considering Kelce down the road. Poe is very valuable to the defense, especially given how many snaps he plays (> 750 snaps every year he’s been in the league), but I’d still put that off to keep the secondary strong by resigning Smith, Berry and even Abdullah. Thanks for reading.

          • Eric

            Looks like the Chiefs disagree. Kelce signs an extension today.

          • Brandon

            I think some of those pending free agents won’t even make free agency. Smith on the other hand will and teams like Oakland will outbid us. Good news tho! They just extended Travis kelce for 5 years 46 million. I think since Dorsey was preparing for the departure of Smith when drafting two corners in the first three rounds. Look I agree that Smith is important and I’d even go as far as saying the trio of Smith peters and Gaines could be just as good as Denver’s trio. As for Poe people are worried that back problems will effect him. You have to take into consideration Dorsey savy method of trying to find more diamonds in the rough that will sign cheaper discounts. Like the one he get both Smith and Abdullah signed at the beginning. As for Berry he will demand earl Thomas money 10 million a year. The market don’t change that.

          • David E. Bell

            Poe and Kelce were next off season’s worry. 2 of 3. can’t recall the third right now. I can’t see Berry and Sean Smith back — too much money riding on two contracts and about 33 million though Kelce’s contract helps a bunch.

          • Brandon

            I haven’t heard anything on Poe’s extension. All I heard was Dorsey utilizing the 5th year option. Berry will be back. Dorsey might target a big lengthy corner in the second to third round. To take over that Smith role. Jalen mills? He has the big frame and physicality to replace Smith.

          • David E. Bell

            they needed to resolve three contracts in 17 — Kelce(done), Poe, and one other…here we are talking about there big guns… oh. Fisher… his is a 10.5 million dollar option. they need to resolve that too(we are talking about 2017 money now).

          • Brandon

            Ya and that 10.5 is entirely 2 much. There was an article they asked what we should do about an underperforming high round tackle that isn’t worth that(it might of been 11.5). The agent clearly said the Vikings are in the same boat with Matt Kalil and we should watch to see what they do and duplicate it.

          • cyberry

            Allen, was ranked one of the worst Guards in 2013. So he was moved to RT in 2014, played 2 quarters was out for the year. Injured his knee in camp.. Stephenson’s play at RT is SO bad.(he can’t run all). They had to move Fisher (he was not demoted) and sign Jah Reid.. And he expects the team to just move around when he is ready. He was Not a Pro-Bowler.. If you want to focus on one position.. come to camp.. STAY HEALTHY!! I understand injures happen, but don’t bitch about when the team starts you or position you play if the team hasn’t been able to rely you in two seasons.. This was his 4th season and got 12 quality games from 4 years..

    • Brandon

      Wilson is doing great for being a undrafted free agent. His first two seasons he’s taking steps forward. Conley is a freak athlete for being how big he is and for clocking the forty he did at the combine last year. He’ll grow and get more of the playbook down. Depth should be added as you mentioned tho because competition never killed anyone.

      As for the Online I’m at complete disagreement. We need a RT and RG. Jeff Allen will not be back. He’s already said he doesn’t feel he’ll be back. He also stated he wants to go somewhere that hr can focus on one position guard. If we go off the notion that “they’ll keep getting better the more reps they get” if that was the case then Fulton would of started (he did take the job away from LDT one game but struggled) and continued to build onto his 16 game rookie season that he started every game. To me LDT and Fulton are our Depth guysplace holders for the time being. Reid as a RT? He was horrible. No other way to put it. He’s a backup not a building stone.

      A lot of people take about how much Smith is sacked but fails to realize that smith purposely holds the ball to long in hopes of the play breaking down and being able to scramble for positive yards. This type of offense results in more sacks then normal. Tho there some instances where primarily the right side gave up immediate pressure.
      The chiefs need to find a red zone target. A second TE or a red zone threat. The chiefs were bad about settling for 3 instead of 7. They need a TE to produce like Fasano did with Kelce. Which was primarily a red zone target even when sitting on the ground lol.

      • David E. Bell

        sorta Brandon, but I think Wilson struggles to get separation and that hurts. Same last year overall from the receiving crew. My view is that Conley offers the best chance at getting what the Chiefs need as number 2 WR. Not saying Bert is Bad or anything like that. He offers up the 3rd option. Avant’s play in the Pat game is my illustration of point. Get Conley’s development, the Chiefs should(MHO) focus on his snaps in pre season, and use him heavily. By season outset and during the early year, he will develop rapidly to use that height and speed to advantage. He commented about this himself. Not to say the Chiefs shouldn’t draft a WR (right guy, slot and opportunity in the draft. I see a couple that could fall in the right place, 2nd round for example. OL== absolutely uncle you bet but the guy they need should be a round 1/2 guy who can start out of the gate. Smith holds the ball when the WRs don’t get in pattern separation and that could be resolved with a #2 WR that gets it done. Too, AS/11 and his feet just a bit more is a threat but I don’t want him to try to be Wilson or Cam — he should skate with the presentation of opportunity or dire need but be willing to use it as a weapon too.

        • Brandon

          What happens is Wilson gets open Smith is just Horrible at throwing deep. Was it the Vikings game where he had Wilson twice and couldn’t connect? I remember seeing the pictures afterwards. Our three headed monster now includes Charles Kelce and Maclin if you can get 500 yards from your second WR that’s good enough.I do agree that Conley will eventual end up being number two. His size and speed can not be ignored. Avants plays illustrate that point yes but also smiths struggles throwing the deep ball. He was 2-7 on passes that went more then 20 yards versus The Pats. Smith is also significantly older then Wilson and Newton. While we have Smith as a sure starter I would like to see them add pieces to the WR core and Online depth so that when Smith starts to lose his winning ways that we can essentially plug and play a QB and hell have everything he needs. I don’t see a tackle being dropped to us. Drago and Springs were both dominated against in the senior bowl practices and the lone stand out offense linenwise was Cody White hair. They supposable have him as the best guard in the draft but are they selling him short? Can he fill that Allen role as RT- Guard role? I read somewhere that he did wonderful 2015 and was one of the best tackles in football.

          • David E. Bell

            I think you need to go back and take a look at the stats, as opposed to focusing on that single instance. Somewhere I ahve saved material on this. It wasn’t until this season that AS/11 had a #1 WR. He had not developed the same rapport with Wilson as Mac, certainly not the same as Kelce. That said? Smith was stronger in 2015 than we had seen him and I don’t really agree with your stance on that part of your post, and am not saying he is a top 8 QB. I think with the OL solid, he will have a better year… and we we need him to add 10% with his feet, more like Rodgers(Not speaking Wilson and certainly not Cam(stand alone giant in that regard).

            I feel that there will be a pick in 2016 that fits at WR and it will come in the first 3 rounds. I also think they must pick an OT in the first round — there we will get a starter which makes existing contracts(ie Reid) the SwT. I can see a lot of advantage in where we stand–you may be right about Cody. Allen is a valuable commodity but it could be as we have seen from one of the AA guys, that Morse moves to Guard and Fulton takes over at Center. Btw the 2 we have the center role covered… The thing about Allen is his versatility. LD-T? He will be improved in 2016 so I think with what they have plus one major draft pick, the OL solidifies even more. Grubbs. Can’t forget him…The secondary? We need to solve that at corner and maybe another ILB. This will be a fun year for the draft my view and last year, Dorsey gets two A+ marks for the first two rounds.

          • Brandon

            I don’t exactly know the stats but I know the facts. Smith has struggled with the deep ball period. This is partly to blame for the WR’s as well and I do remember them talking about how poor our WR were when the play breaks down and that they gave up or just couldn’t naturally create scramble plays versus New England. Smith is great but let’s not overhype him. He’s an 11 year veteran that’s a middle in the pack QB. He’s a system QB that his best attributes can be taught to him instead of it being just athletic. I would love to see just exactly how many of his yards were YAC done by the WR. The fact that he led every QB with WR screen TD’s justifies my point. The west coast offense is based on short throws opening up the deep pass. Smith does not throw deep and when he does its inaccurate. Let’s face the facts what QB can’t run nowadays and even in recent memory how many qbs were scrambling ones in recent super bowls. Newton,Wilson, Kaepernick.
            With all that being said I’m proud of Smith this year he felt the pressure of being 1-5 and having to face losing Charles. Everything was on him he had to get the ball to kelce and Mac. He did. But Smiths struggles can keep a great player like maclin back by saying hey most of your yards have to be YAC(if Chip chose to resign him he would of been a pro bowler). The only game I remember smith being good at the deep ball was when he connected twice with Maclin deep versus Buffalo. One perfect all the props to him. Second a pourly thrown ball that Maclin could of been hit in stride but Mac being the playmaker he is adjusted and caught a ball that could of been challenged and possibly overturn but Rex didn’t.

            As for the Oline I’m gonna have to agree to disagree with as well. Fulton did look decent at Center but I simply think him and LDT are depthplace holders. Morse is great where he is at. Jeff Allen notioned the displeasure of having to play multiple positions this is probably why when he was healthy he was a scratch because he wanted the guard spot and Reid liked LDT’s intelligence and wanted to continue to build onto that. Eventually Grubbs went and Allen ended up starting mostly ever game at LG where he ended up being our best lineman period all year (big surprise after all of us were scratching our heads at one point asking why isn’t Jeff Allen playing?) We can go off the notion LDT will get better well I said that about Fulton which is why I thought he would get the nod at the start of the season when he began his rookie year starting all 16 games and he did one week but they continued to struggle. Tackle does have to be address Reid(By the way if you want Reid to be a swing tackle oh man thats scary dude sucks at pass protection period)and Fisher are the only two that I see on the roster in 2016 other then them an unproven pughsley . My nature is this. We wanna win bad stop tinkering around with projects and get people that will come in and instantly upgrade ur team for a Superbowl!. A 34 year old evan mathis would come in and take LDT spot and do significantly better. I think the chiefs should go Dline in the first round draft. Like I’ve said before if the first four tackles are gone I wouldn’t target the next three until round 2. Drafting based purely on need has never been Dorsey’s MO. He’s going to pick who he feel is the best player. My fingers are still crossed for someone of talent to drop. Jaylon Smith Robert Nkemdiche,Myles Jack(ya i know im crazy for that one) instantly come to mind. He’s gotta lot of weight on his shoulders and I absolutely love how he started things off making Kelce a chief until 2021!! Dorsey has a some money to spend. Houston’s contract, Berry, kelce now the second highest TE. Hopefully veterans like Devito,DJ,Hali will take cheap contracts because they feel their close to a super bowl run. Dorsey needs to do what he does best. Find great players on the FA market. Kinda like the Sean Smith, Geoff Schwartz, Hussain abdullah, and Branch deals. Some successful long term and cheap contracts some one year successful prove it deals. I have all the faith in the world in Dorsey. Guy knows what he’s doing. We were once somewhere that no one wanted to play. Now we can lure players in with our recent success to build.

          • David E. Bell

            last year, we were talking about this with the 16th rated passer and the OL he had last year. This year, we are talking about the 10th rated passer and a similar discord with the offensive line. We are never going to agree on this because of this and the fact that KC runs the West Coast. I don’t have a problem with a system QB. His record stands for itself in the final category(W-L). Give him the OL and he can system his way to the SB and maybe a win, with KC’s defense. Smith used his feet in College and was the 4th in the NFL with his feet in 2015. As far as over hype him? I am not that guy but look at what was accomplished with him at the helm. There is no alternative in the NFL that we could get and only a shot at it with Murray or Bray. I keep Newton separate because he may be the guy that shovels dirt in the snot of his opponents — they guy is a huge running asset but he is not a great passer. But for Ron’s setup? That can be a dynasty in itself. the stat sheet I was talking about showed Smith’s numbers in the 20 yard plus category and it was far from what I thought it was(meaning far better). I will let that stand as an aside because I have been in Houston since the playoff game and don’t have my PC to retrieve it. I keep in mind that Smith was only a step away from the Superbowl before Kaepernick took the next season and I believe it shows what a poor decision in that regard that the brother of the Ravens HC made and why he is in Michigan.

          • Brandon

            I completely agree he just has to work with the deep through. He has to work on his red zone efficiency. My point is when does a older player start regressing? I found an article on all QB’s air yards. Alex smith is 24th. Average 3 air yards per attempt. He threw for what 3400 yards and 1900 of those yards were yards after the catch. I don’t know what his qbr,td-ratio, completion percentage over 2015 but if you know the chiefs you know they could do no worse then what he did in 2014. Let’s just hope that’s for the sake of him lacking proper playmakers but Smith isn’t a game changer he needs to take that step up. Air it out. Seriously he has never had one career game over 50 attempts? What happens when your in the playoffs and you have to do that? Because your down. He wasn’t very accurate and he needed to be. You hit kelce on that throw and your in the game. That’s his red zone woes. This is why I harp on we need a number two tight end. Smith is better with a two red zone TE’s.

          • David E. Bell

            I buy the 2 TE concept and that we need another WR. How both are fit to money and personnel remains to be seen. I like what Conley brings but can see a draft pick too. Ditto TE. The Article I refer to was not who I thought it was — I touched bases with Ryan Clark(PFSpot) — he referred me to Chris Clark’s article. I will find it and post back here(this is about AS/11). Again, AS/11 fits his play to the offense and that dynamic fits him and he fits the offense. They did turn him loose a bit. I think you are picking on the wrong horse in the red zone because I see a lot of the problem as playcalling. More later on this topic…

          • David E. Bell

            Here is the Chris Clark article on AS/11:


            I keep in mind the framework:This is the west coast, it is geared to the short, high percentage pass, the Chiefs feature a run game and 50+ passes is not something that I think will be successful(to get to that kind of game, you have a different offense or fell behind so early, you have to do it.

            High positives: Kelce is already one of the top two TEs in the NFL. He has 850+ yds each of the last 2 years. His YAC is very good as well. Before, in SF, Smith had Delanie Walker….

            To go to your point, Smith is conservative, and finding the TE in a crossing route fits to the T. If you look at throwing to an RB, when at Frisco, Al had Frank Gore and then here, Jamaal Charles. His completion percentage to either of those receivers is 67%+. Again, it fits the offense being used and the player/personnel that was on the field(Both TE AND RB as a receiver. looking back, both Gore and Charles are 3rd and 5th or so of AS/11’s target list. Charles caught 12 TDs
            Running backs Frank Gore and Jamaal Charles are third and fifth on Smith’s list of targets and completions. Charles has caught 12 touchdowns from Smith in 2 + abbreviated 3rd season. Go from there: AS/11, throwing to WR’s has a about a 60% completion percentage and keep in mind he has had only one true #1 WR in three years with poor offensive line play to boot. This is why I harp so much on the OL… Given a solid OL, I think things shift up a notch and AS//11 was showing it in 2015, despite the poor play for so many games this season by the OL. Back when it was Crabtree or Bowe, the percentage was the same and the YPC was about 12. In 2015, Maclin averaged 15.5 which is his highest career number. A different article focuses on YAC and this is where Maclin had previously averaged about 6.

            The Chiefs did not get Conley to move up to a true #2 role, but I expect that will be the case in 2016. He is hands above Wilson as a #2. Not knocking Wilson, but AS/11 with the WC Off. needs the hands, height and speed opposite Maclin. Wilson, in my mind has topped out. His speed adds a dimension over the top but AS/11 needs the OL to get where that threat is a constant. Avant’s show at Patriots illustrates my point — this is where Conley needs to get to.

            As far as #2 TE? Reid and Co didn’t trust Harris until he made “the Catch”. It is my view that his start in 2016 will be far more a feature than it has been. I don’t discount James O’Shaughnessy either. Both men will have another off-season bulk/strength training and I mentioned before in another posting that I had specifically had eyes only on Harris in a couple of games. His blocking is beyond decent and it is my view that 2016 is his proof of the pudding year. Does this mean I wouldn’t want to draft another TE? Nope. I do. I want Dorsey to find the magic — again.

            In any of this construction, have I ever said, anywhere you have seen me comment that Alex was a top 5 QB? Never. I have said that I thought he would fall in around 10 and I think 2015 proves my point. With an OL and two WR, and two TEs and Charles(or whomever out of the backfield), Al wiill have the protection to get deep more often successfully and step it beyond where he has been otherwise in passing.

            Is that too much to ask? I don’t think so and you point out that Smith needs to work it up for the longer throws. Yes he does but keep in mind that in 2015, he came out with an off-season acknowledging he had worked on arm strength and footwork for passing. I think it showed and he will build off of that.

            I have noted many times, that he reminds me of Len Dawson early, and Dawson’s success came (Publicly) came after the 1965 season. I can’t predict what happens in 2016 except to say that I think AS/11 will continue to be conservative, protect the ball and excel at what he has done — but build on what he gained in 2015. I look for something like 3800 yards with a higher percentage completion in the mid range than ever before and longer passes more successful as well. With an offensive line that gives him the protection, he success (passer completion percentage) will not fall off to the low 50s and even Aaron Rodgers, whom we all admire, had the same problem with Green Bay in 2015…

          • Brandon

            I get that’s the type of offense that’s being used but once again the point of the west coast offense is to open up the deep ball. Smith doesn’t cash in on these opportunity and when he does its somewhat in accurate. My point is how hard is it for a QB to throw an average of 3 air yards per attempt? Not throw interception? And be able to pick up firsts with his legs(this one is actually pretty hard). All these things can be taught. My problem is we run this offense and it turns a two minute drill into a 5-6 minute drill. Why? Because Smith does not throw deep and more then half of smiths yards are YAC.

            As for Online well he I know the facts on average smith holds onto the ball longer then an average QB. Why well we are okay with giving up the sacks rather then throwing interception. That and Smith hopes that the play will break down and Smith can utilize his legs. Smith is very good at passing to RB’s because well Jamaal is good like that anyone can give the ball to Jamaal Like that when Reid is their coach.

            Idk I think chiefs should invest in another WR. I like Coleman he could kinda make that Jackson & Mac combo Reid had in philly so that is Smith can’t cash in on two deep threats he’s the problem.I harped during that those first 6 games Wilson(injured for a couple games) and Conley couldn’t even break 100 yards. I don’t expect that next year.

            As for Harris I’m done he makes 1 “catch” and all of a sudden he’s worthy of another season in the number two role . I don’t see Harris having a fasano like season until he’s fasano’s age(he only had like 100-200 yards fasano but the TD’s I think he might have had a handful of TD’s 4-6) I watched him all season I can only name his bad plays. Costly penalties versus Buffalo and another one that u called “bad call”. He had two drops wide open one versus Detroit another somewhere else. His best play? Well the TD versus Oakland, one route where he drew the attention of 3 Pittsburgh defenders and left Conley open on the flat for a TD. Oh and one catch in San Diego that accounted for more then 80 percent of his yards this season. Like I said I think our offense would use a second TE more then another WR. I think it would be wise for Dorsey to invest higher in a TE than WR. The top two prospects in the second or third because we are so far back. Harris is a good blocker but I’d go as far as saying you could easily draft a better blocking TE in the draft. Shag was more of a pass catching athletic TE so its obvious he needs to bulk up and gain more weight. A fifth round pick instantly came in and stole Harris spot. There was a point in that Buffalo game when hr gave up a costly offsides that everyone from chiefs kingdom that had a twitter attacked him. He deserved it. He is easily replaceable and obviously is just in the roster because of his cheap contact.

            Smith did better but he’s still learning. That two minute offense st the end of the the playoff game is something that an 11 year Vet should have down. His feet will slow down the older he gets. Smith’s job is easy and all of his success should be accredited towards Reid and the new Philly coach. Smith is not the QB that plays from behind. He will never be able to throw the “miracle” hail Mary that Rodgers QB. He’s a mercenary for Reid and as long as Reid is barking or whoever is in his ear he will never be able to run up to the line and call a play st the line in critical situations like Brady can. Say oh we are at the one quick lineup and snap for a qb sneak. Nope. We are hoping that Smith that
            doesn’t ever decrease his production? Let’s hope.

            The only thing wrong with your theory about him looking like Len Dawson is I love Lenny and everything but he wouldn’t fit in today’s NFL. Players like wilson,Kaepernick,Tryod Taylor, RG3 and Manzel could benefit the same producting if not more then smith(let’s face it all these QB’s are faster then smith) with Reid as the coach AND they would do it for a way less money. Heck I’d even go as far as saying Manzel,Taylor and Wilson have more arm strength and deep throw accuracy more so then Smith will ever have his entire career. Ifsmith throws for 3800 yards. 2,400 it would be YAC.

          • David E. Bell

            the west coast is not the offense as you see it from how I view it. I think of Montana here, even at KC. But the KC teams have a ground game. Your second point is my point. Until 2015, we had no #1 WR. That changed things(hence my references). I am still trying to get Chris Clark’s attention to find his article. The next point is, who is calling plays? Come on, AS/11 is not calling plays. that is on the play caller(i was quite wont to get after Reid nearly all season on this). I can grant you that Smith isn’t aiming to throw it(except in the scripted short game) within 1.97 seconds(al Brady’s success). Again, it takes WRs able to get separation. I think you are calling the wrong horse on that one with your bet. That’s me…. d

          • Brandon

            That Article was basically powdering Alex Smiths butt. The real reason smith throws it past the yard markers versus NE was because he HAD too. The was no way we were going to win with smith being smith. The article mentions the metric system ALEX which proved my point. Smith isn’t the type of leader that can miraculously score then winning drive TD. The reason he forced the ball passed the first down markers was because well the other formula didn’t work versus every playoff team in the regular season. Chiefs were lucky this year when they faced Pittsburgh without big Ben and they faced the ravens at the end of the season riddled with injuries. Smith isn’t even the type of QB that has success playing from behind(his record of be down by 14 points is embarrassing) with Smith the only way I see us winning a superbowl is from the defense. And from our conservative natured 3 air yards per attempt YAC reliant time consuming, run game offense. For us to beat NE Smith can’t be 2-7 for more then 20 yards he has to be 5-7. For us to beat NE smith can’t be hey I’m gonna only put it where my guy can get it Smith he has to be lets take a shot and lower that throw to Kelce a lil bit. Look the west coast offense is what it is. I argued heavily that west coast was just short routes screens and YAC plays until someone pointed out the actually definition was for the short passing game to open up the deep pass game. After reading a Book on it I was wrong and he was right. Alex smith not calling the plays in a two minute drill is my point. Why is Brady so.successful because he does that and the fact that Reid doesn’t trust Smith enough to give up the playcslling in the last 7 minutes of a game down by two justify’s what he’s lacking. On field leadership and quick wit thinking. Smith isn’t pushing it 1.97 seconds no but he’s pushing it 3 air yards per attempt. Rather that’s a swing route by a rb. A drag route from a TE or WR coming across. Or screens to WR’s.

          • David E. Bell

            I agree with you that Smith and QBs his style, need a defense. Doesn’t mean he won’t get a ring and he is on the right team for it. the WC opens up the run game, play action and longer passes (all of the above) but it is efficiency first and get the defense to buy into playing tight. Get the linebackers dropping and bring in play action and then go over the top. yeah, I see that. Again: we have had 1 year of a #1 WR that gets separation. With a solid #2 that is trusted, that opens things up a bunch – especially with Kelce and Charles tossed in. We have not discussed DAT but I am not sold on him but for special teams nor do I buy Wilson as a #2. Give AS/11 a solid 2 WR and things shift up accordingly.

          • Brandon

            I mean I like Smith but his abilities can hold us back like his lack of experience in the clutch. His lack of experience playing from behind. His lack of experience to shoulder his team when there running game is lacking (NE). I actually would like to see a pick for the future somewhere. I want a future starting QB. I want a sure thing instead of us scratching our heads saying maybe Murray or Bray are those guys. Our offense is to reliant on players like Mac,Kelce, Nd Charles manning there own yards. Once again this can be done by any QB. Smith isn’t upholding his team his team is upholding him (besides his scrambling ability)

          • David E. Bell

            Brandon, I am not saying AS/11 is anything other than what he is. I am saying that he will rank out about #10-12 and that we can win a super bowl with Al at the helm. I am not disagreeing about drafting a QB but with the Chiefs winning it would take one of those astute picks of a player out of nowhere to be the guy because this program is winning and getting better so a draft pick would have to be that type of miraclte pick. We both think it crucial for the 2 TE set and a 3rd guy to mix it up in those special formations(my view they have this guy already). In fact, I am still big on Harris, and they have Parker as well. I think the Chiefs are solid #1 WR and #3 WR(Maclin and Wilson). I am not certain but think Conley will get the focus is 2016 to be the #2 but the Chiefs could draft in round 2 such a WR. Why round 2? because I think they will be faced with making the first pick a starter and with so many teams looking at the defense, there are 3 guys at least who could be starter quaility picks in the first 28 players taken. With Charles, we have his threat in the aerial game. I don’t agree that Smith is not leading this team to win after win if that isn’t upholding his end of the deal, I don’t know what is. No, he is not a Joe Willy but even Namath in his bowl wasn’t the credential that won — they won as a team. Ditto Dawson, etc. Mostly, I am ill to death of the heaping of ill will on our QB(s). We are totally solid and have no worry my view. The OL is where things remain a concern in the 4th year and that MUST be resolved to get to the big game. Hence I think they must return Allen and make that single draft pick of a starter quality player. I think second to that is WR. Then defense(secondary). Keeping our own Free Agents is crucial to the mix of things as well. I am writing in almost all of them. My biggest question is Sean Smith. The Chiefs that stay together, believe together and win together(Cohesion) will be a hell of a team and this is the 4th season for most of them. We have been back and forth, and like usual, we basically come to agreement on the way things stack up. I believe though that the #2 WR is key as is the offensive line. We have the weapons and players about to be weapons(Conley, West, Ware, Wilson, Ramik Wilsonk, Ford etc stepping up the next level from within the program).

          • Brandon

            Nothing against smith he just has a limit. Being the NFL freak I am I stay updated. Did you hear what Reid just said to Carr! He said I would of taken you but I had just got Alex. At the pro bowl practice.That is so frustrating to hear because I’d go as far as saying Carr was a better QB then smith last year and will have a better career then Smith. We could of had that. Smith will inevitably hold his team back as to Carr has a higher ceiling.

            Parker was a division 2 college TE that played I believe played 5 year’s. Was impressive highlight film much better hands then Harris. Still very limited.

            Smith hasn’t really been “leading” his team. I have yet to see him win a game in the clutch. Our turnover happy defense is the heart and soul of our success. To me “leading a team” is like Rodgers Brady Newton those are leaders. The clutch players. The offensive stat holders. I can’t name one game winning drive he’s had here.

          • David E. Bell

            You are absolutely incorrect on the hands issue. the assessment others doesn’t mesh with what you have written. I am not saying a #2 TE. The players on the Chiefs do not agree with your assessment of Leadership and Al Smith so I am not going to be able to resolve this one. If Andy was dumb enough to say that, then that is one more in my book agin him and I am not a big Andy Reid Fan. As far as Carr? Proof is in the pudding and he has yet to prove anything. I agree he has a high ceiling, but look at the age difference. Div 2 means little or nothing come combine time and what is coachable. I just wrote a piece on Senior Bowl — McRoberts(WR, SW Mo St, which is now sO mO u? ). We will wait and see what happens next on that. No one, btw, from the Chiefs staff questions the hands of Harris. The rest is in blocking, route running, and handling pressure. I think his TD catch that literally won a game tells me what I need to know at this point.

          • Brandon

            Its yet to be proven but Smith has pretty much struggled his entire career. Andy Reid did say that after he approached him Carr and said im a huge fan of yours. He said thanks coach and then he said I wanted to draft you but I had already taken Alex its like uurrr. How many pro bowls has smith been in? One? Maybe two? Smith will never be able to man the offense. If smith was in Hailey’s offense his upside would be very lil. Smith should accredit his whole success to Harbaugh and Reid because he hasn’t played well without either two. As for Carr his coming out and doing great. Carr can actually air it out. Did you see that game Pittsburgh versus Oakland? No way Alex and shoot it out with big Ben. That was my proof in the pudding. As for Harris and his game winning catch. You do realize that game held no value whatsoever in the playoff format and really wouldn’t of changed anything if they would of just played their back UPS. That’s coming from a true fan and went to this very game as my first. The game was pointless. Have u seen Carr’s stats? Smith can’t ever match Carr’s success that year. 32 TD’s 13 picks and 4,000 yards in his second season! It took Carr two seasons to take the league over. I would of rather had Carr then Smith any day of the week.

          • David E. Bell

            You have said your piece, I mine. Andy Reid should not have said what he said–that might not wound his QB because Smith is a mature man but it was wrong for Reid to have said it the way he said it. AS/11 is our QB, not Carr. Even so, Smith is proven and Carr is not. Do I think Carr is a franchise QB? I hadn’t addressed that in my mind, but yes, I think that. You measure a lot by yards and the aerial game for a team, and that is your deal. You want to argue Pro Bowl and I never said that about AS/11. Last year and this, I said he should be ranked about 10 or so with a decent OL and two WRs. That is about right for Al Smith. Brandon, you are arguing a point that makes no difference to where the teams stand. When Carr proves himself, I will gladly acknowledge that he has ascended. First he must do it with wins and then post-season. Your comment about the catch by Harris holds no water because it was a great catch, over the top and his hands proved out the soft hands of a basketball player, something you are not addressing. You seem to think that Carr’s stats on his team equal something that is exceedingly important to you. Stats are like QBs. Rivers, is one that doesn’t get it done because his surrounding cast isn’t there. Or, there was a QB in Miami that had the same problem. We are not talking about things from the same frame of reference. AS/11 is QB for the Chiefs, nothing will change that. He is a winning QB. He is not in the top 10 and for now, I am okay with that. This topic is about what? The off-season to do’s not about AS/11 vs any other QB. QB is not a question, other questions exist which we have addressed and largely agree. Is Carr my kind of QB? I have a wait and see on that. You know that I am not an Option QB type of guy nor that type of offense. You also know that I want Smith to use his feet where it gains big yards, or avoids sacks and lost yards. Hence, I am not a supporter of Wilson nor of Cam Newton but I can tell you this about Cam — he is in a genre all on his own. Kaepernick? Whatever you think about him, he is pretty much a wash now and AS/11 is on a team that he fits while Harbaugh is in Michigan with college kids. Say what you will but that was a wrong decision in my view, but that is a completely separate topic than the to do list, isn’t it?

          • Brandon

            I honestly would of loved the idea of drafting Carr over Ford even with Smith on the roster. Smith is our guy but I’m fearful for out team if they can not keep that Defense together. Ultimately I think smith will hold us back. I see him getting older and his feet becoming slower. I see his lack of TD’s to be a problem. I do hope Dorsey at some point gives us a future within the Qb position. Alex Smith’s only argument has to be well he wins. Ya but he doesn’t win for them. The defense wins for us. Reid in his last two years at Philly with Djack and Mac he had respectively the 9th and 13th best passing offense. I want that here. I want to see okay we have to score in two minutes we have a QB that can do that for us. Smith is a place holder and to be a true contending playoff team. You need a franchise QB. If Alex smith can lead us to the promise land then…. Well if still know its because of the defenses. Hey I’m just happy that Reid said it and acknowledged he knows what a franchise QB is. Carr did something that I’ve never seen Smith do in a chiefs uniform that’s win a game in the clutch versus a good ravens team with flacco and I think Steve smith. I’m just worried about Smith has a future reference. He is one good hit away on one of those scrambles to get injured. Then were screwed with unproven players. I have heard of that southern Missouri receiver. I don’t think Kap’s a wash. They just tried to make him something he’s not. They tried less scrambling plays and more pocket passing. That’s not Kaep’s MO. Chip Kelly will resurrect Kaep’s career. If Harbaugh would of kept his job Kaep would be still relevant. You take away any QB’s coach its going to hender his progression(IE smiths first 8 years in San Fran) it is but it isn’t. I’m making the argument that Reid actually had his eye on a franchise QB and he passed because he had Smith. We should of taken him. We need a QB to be our future. A QB that can man the workload that doesn’t necessarily need his WR to run for 2,000 yards after the catch out of his what 3,400? Smith and Carr would of been perfect and Daniels by the time Reid thought carr was ready to go he would have all the traits of Smith.(first down awareness, conservative nature, and short 3 air yards per pass attempt). To utilize your players to the fullest potential you need a QB with a high ceiling. Otherwise your going to squander away what talent you have will you have it in their prime(Charles,Kelce,Mac) id like to see Reid take a QB. Id like for the chiefs to give fans hope for the future and draft a QB and say this is our future.

          • David E. Bell

            then Dorsey should have drafted the QB in year one. They went with experience and they could have gone with Carr too and they did not. Moot point now. Kaep didn’t have a good year the last year with Harbaugh. You can’t call it 8 years of AS/11 because he didn’t start until what, 2010? Beyond that, the rest we know. I grant you the QB of the future is the question. Daniel will Skate in 2016(money) and we have no conception of Murray or Bray as yet. Reid doesn’t determine the picks, Dorsey and Co do. Yes, Reid and staff have input. One thing to keep in mind: Reid wanted Alex Smith out of the gate…

          • Brandon

            Ya im a big what if guy. We couldn’t of drafted a QB year one. Geno smith? Ej Manuel? Neither of them were any good. So lets say we did still trade for AS11 and then the next year we drafted Carr. Carr would of sat two years primed and ready to go. Pederson would of been Philly’s HC. Trade Smith 2 philly clearing up all the cap space you need to retain EVERYONE On that defense. Carr would of stepped in primed ready to go next year and the franchise as a whole would of been at a much better place long term. Now I feel like we are putting to much hope into Smith when we know he has limitations. If the NFL says Kaep is washed up well then Smith was washed up for his first three years in the league as well. Comparing the two’s numbers if Kaep progresses in a great scheme like kelly’s hell do more then what Smith will do. He didn’t start because he was so bad. The coaching staff literally had no faith in him which is even worse. I think Reid has a so say in who Dorsey drafts. This is why we drafted Kelce. Reid had a personal relationship with his brother prior. Ultimately Dorsey’s looking st draft prospects then he’s turning around saying you like this idea and if Reid says No then Dorsey has to respect that. Reid has final say rather then Dorsey does. Its a mutual agreement at the end of the day. Reid is just as much part of the draft process and Contract negotiations as Dorsey. This is also what lead to us paying Maclin. Reid said go get him and Dorsey said Ok.

          • David E. Bell

            you get way out there Brandon… Kaep had how many years, w-l record? Smith had how many years, w-l record? selecting Smith at the time when Dorsey arrived and Reid said “yay” was the only possible good decision to be made. KC finishing with 11 wins in 2013… was Carr still available? I get what you would like, and I am not saying that I cannot support getting Carr. Trading AS/11 and the money he had locked at the time would be a big IF. I get how you feel about Smith. I personally don’t see it that way, we differ. It didn’t take long to get to Kaep who has poor passing technique, footwork etc. Smith doesn’t have those problems. I guess I have no faith at all in kaep. Tit for Tat that way. I do not agree that Reid has a say in who is drafted. Both Reid and Dorsey say differently. Dorsey outlined the process last year. I am not saying they don’t work closely together but Dorsey has control of that side of the house, bottom line and both men have said that. Reid tells a different story on acquiring Maclin also. he figured there was no chance, remember? Dorsey brung him to the Kingdom. You are making some assumptions based on something that is not public in how KC operates. Both sides are separate entities with defined responsibilities and that is what Hunt, Reid and Dorsey have all said. —d

          • Brandon

            Ya I’ll be the first to admit I can get way out their. Kaep has pure athleticism and can literally take the job of a struggling veteran like smith. Harbaugh prove right there to me that it wasn’t Smiths great play making ability keeping the ship afloat it wad just his aggressive coaching. I agree in 2013 AS11 was the best QB available period on the market. What sucks is I believe Reid is purely to thank for Smiths success. He may have all these great footwork but truth of the matter is he’s ranked 25th in the league in air yards per attempt. Doesn’t take alot footwork to do that. I’m happy for the success of the chiefs but I see us in a state of limbo instead a state of uprising. We need to push the envelope and be great instead of good. I truly believe the chiefs would of went 9-7 if big Ben would of played and the ravens didn’t completely fall apart. I know what Reid is capable of when he has a QB ie Foles or whoever he had in Philly his last two years in Philly when he was ranked 9th and 13th in passing that’s actually capable of pushing the ball down the field in an aggressive manner not mr check down(he has rightfully earned that nickname). Kaep’s first year in the league he led a team to the super bowl. Smiths first time in the league he threw 11 interceptions and 1 TD. He has struggled his whole career with TD’s. A QB that struggles to produce 25 TD’s is ultimately going to hold you back. As for who’s the operations of things work in chiefs kingdom your right. Dorsey ultimately gets the players that Reid likes. Every Mock Drsft I ever read it always talks about how Reid loves to build through th trenches. This is true and Dorsey knows that. They’ve worked together for some odd years they know how the game goes. Ultimately its a mutual understanding and trust between the two. Dorsey Understand what Reid needs and Reids trust Dorsey to give him that. Carr was in the 2014 draft we would of had to draft Ford over Carr which I wish I had of. Reid and Dorsey both interview each candidate and ultimately Reid is.the one to say hey Peters and Morse are both smart players. They we could potentially plug and play at both positions of need. Dorsey is still kinda learning his way and his real test is.this offseason because of he doesn’t make the right moves we could easily fall behind Oakland a team on the rise with young players like Mack,Carr,Cooper. Reid had stated that before Maclin was a free agent. Even I thought Philly was going to resign him or at least franchise tag him. Why? Uhhh because I knew no one was going to outbid us in the free agent market versus Maclin a player from Missouri that was drafted by Reid and the fact our whole WR core didn’t catch a TD as well. We would of paid top dollar for Mac on the free agent market.

          • David E. Bell

            Dorsey is a “Wolf”pack man. I leave it there. We know that Reid never has gotten over the top. Let’s hope the two of them together pull it off next coupla years. Smith’s surrounding cast came after his break in. Kaep inherited that. He was Harbaugh’s guy but as I ntoed, I think that proved out that was a missed call by Harbaugh and that got him fired along with his temper and interaction with the GM & owner I guess. I agree that Dorsey and Reid are on the same page. It goes deeper than that as well, to Ballard, the other coaches, the scouts, etc. That is all goodness. Oakland will have a successful year next season. I see the Chiefs and Oakland 1/2 or vice versa. Denver has the Defense but we will have to see at QB. The Chiefs should have won out the season in the AFC west but for the miffed game at Denver. No matter what Rivers does, he is handicapped(player personnel, the move or not(now staying in Diego is no cup of tea for another year, their fan-base is on the outs with the whole deal). We still don’t have the receiver corp, we have Maclin(Unless Conley gives his proof in the pudding year 2. Look for a draft item here to get the right guy in case that doesn’t work. I won’t count on DAT nor Wilson especially as #2. Nothing in the NFL remains static. I saw Ryan Tracy figure a way to keep the big Free Agents. I am unsure of that in both Smith and Berry, Hali could retire but wants to play. I am not down on Ford who will have the off-season for continued strength and weight building. He has not had enough starts to come to his own but that is Reid’s way and the Chiefs way now. I am most concerned about OL, CB & WR. The draft is deep in defense, and the Chiefs might could do another 1/2 golden draft the way it sets up. Indeed, I look for this. It might not unfold that one of the top OT’s that are on Dorsey’s board at draft time is there at 28. But a lot of talent on the defensive side of the ball.

            Unlike you, I am not a big aerial game guy. I want a balanced attack and a good defense(Air Coryell, Marino, go back to gabriel, Fran, and so on). But then, I am “antient” and don’t like most of what I see as the standard fare of the air game. As noted, I like Cam Newton, but the style that brings is not my cup of tea. Let’s see what happens in the Bowl because Newton could turn it all on it’s ear, or have Denver’s D takeaway the pass game and force him into running into containment. Should be interesting to say the least.

          • Brandon

            Not exactly what you mean by wolf pack guy? All I know is he is years grown into his long overdued shot at a GM. Dorsey needs to be him and not try and focus purely on the draft to replace method green bay uses. Even Mike Mccarthy called out his own GM sayings its inexcusable the lack of aggressiveness in free agency is costing the franchise from being true contenders year in and year out. I think I get your referring to wolf in green bay(lol I’m an idiot)

            I think Harbaugh was s prima diva with a bad temper. Respectively tho he was technically right. The firing of him ruined that franchise all around. That franchise was once a true contender at one point. The GM with horrendous drafting (they turned the two picks from us into 5 picks overall and none of those players are any good), the GM’s overtrust into a GM that wasn’t letting his coach have enough say so.

            as for rivers I haven’t counted them out. That was once a winning team id you date back 3 years. They just suffered just like Baltimore did. No one could stay healthy. Doesn’t mean that they won’t turn it around with a successful draft and healthy season. San Diego actually player teams like green bay and Pittsburgh till the very end in competitive games.

            Oakland is also on the rise which scares me. Carr is a really good QB.

            I for one am TIRED of everyone saying oh we need s WR core. Alex just doesn’t have a receiver core. NO a true QB makes the receivers look better. You give Brady, Rodgers, Big Ben, fourth rounders and below and they’ll win regardless. Smith makes the WR look bad. Smiths downfield accuracy is so bad that it prevents him from taking shots. He started to finally let it lose at the end of the year but still he struggled.

            I like Ford he has a bright future u just don’t like how long its taking for him to develop. He’s had more bad games then good ones. He’s stonewalled a lot. He needs to work on his hands. I think Hali said he wasn’t ready to retire. He should be next to work contract negotiations. If it isn’t settled by the day after the super bowl we take a 4million contract void hit and he becomes a free agent.

            its Crucial that Dorsey and Reid find instant contributors rather then projects. He’s shown he can draft even when its based on need and find the best players at those positions okay well do that again. The strongest position is Dline. So is the QB position. I like a lot of the QB’s in this years draft. Prescott,Hogan,Cook,Geoff,Hackenburg, I even like Boykin who is the best running QB to me could all be great projects.

            as much as I’m attacking AS11 if defended him all year long. Smiths supporting cast has no Experience. Wilson,Conley,Kelce(first time starter)O’Shaughnessy,Harris, West,Ware,LDT, Morse are all ubproven players. Smith has down great with what he has but I’m fearful because this offense needs to take that next step and evolve. This Teams defense has pulled majority of the weight for three years now. Dorsey knows for us to continue success he’s either going to have to A gamble that the offense will take a step forward in its own and focus primarily on finding young playmakers or B try and transform your offense into taking the man load and invest in OL WR TE esc. And try and retain the most important free agents back. Berry, DJ Smith,Hali.

            I hope Dorsey finds a great one two and three pick. Conley is his worst third round pick. he needs 2 strike gold like he did with Kelce and Gaines.

            what worries me about Denver is they drafted the best possible player exactly when they got manning. That was their fail safe. The best possible move for the franchise. Where is are fail safe? We need one because Smith isn’t going to be the type of player that’s going to play or even produce as much as manning at those older age’s.

            the passing game is todays NFL. To me a deep throw is always and will always be more exciting then a 80 yard catch and run with 3 air yards in between. The best teams are the ones that have perfected the deep ball. Seahawks,Green bay,Pittsburgh, New England, Arizona, Baltimore. That’s todays NFL the rules are bent more for WR’s and QB’s so that they can score more touchdowns. That’s the way todays NFL is built.

            another way todays NFL is built is look at EVERY Team in the NFL. I could literally go through every team and 80 percent of them have went the route or currently going the route of Drafting a QB developing him and turn him into a franchise player. That’s the way todays NFL is. There is some successful journeyman Brees and Manning, Palmer but those are all great HOF qb’s (maybe not Palmer but his type of football is exciting). The best thing for a franchise is draft and develop. Even if the need of QB isn’t there. Rodgers and Farve. The wolf way.

          • David E. Bell

            Ron Wolf, Schneider, Dorsey. I cannot agree with you about the WRs and they must have pass protection that is efficient. So far, Alex Smith has not had a #2. with Bowe, he had a #2 and no #1. It is all part of a machine and it must all function as a unit. The team must be on the same page, player by player, play after play. The Chiefs are just coming into their own in year 4, year 3 of a group of offensive linemen who are largely familiar with one another and each others tendencies, weaknesses and strengths. I cannot agree with you about Conley either for the same reason. It is a complicated playbook and takes time to ingest, understand flows and play mechanisms. I don’t even agree with your list of unproven players. Kelce indeed. Sheesh, Brandon, you want a pro bowler at every position and do it with the money available to every team and it cannot be done, it isn’t done and you can only put people in place and give them a shot at success.

            You are not going to get two Kelce’s(who is unproven with 850_ yards 2 seasons in a row and the first of those he was not a starter until about game 6 or 7)…or if you do, you are not going to be able to pay for the needed #2, or the CB we must have one way or the other. Development from within and how to do it came from Wolf, to Thompson, Dorsey and Scneider. I go with that group, the “Wolf” pack.

            Kelce? Come on man. He got the pro bowl bid, did he not? Ford? How is he going to contribute with Hali and Houston getting all the snaps(until Houston’s injury). Next year? He will develop and strengthen and have an additional move. They keep Hali at a discount(again) and break Ford in with more snaps out of the gate, saving Hali from the higher number of snaps. By end of season you have a seasoned Ford. Morse and Peters have already succeeded. for a 6th round pick, LD-T has also. For a later pick, Fulton also. Dorsey has made the moves to put people in the right place with signings also. Injuries hurt terribly last year and even this and the Chiefs won 11 games again. Should have been 12 and possibly 13. But the skid killed them and that was when the shifting of players on the front 5 remained unsettled. Reid has got to settle that hash in camp going into pre-season this year, and not do what he has done previous 2 years with the personnel available.

            I think you look to much at the individual trees, the oaks, the elms, the fruit bearer, etc. The picture is the forest and how it should be planted. That is where Dorsey is headed so much of what you posted about inexperience was the case but players are moving up and some will move on. It is never static. Conley? He has all the tools necessary to succeed. Can he translate it to #2 snaps? Wilson reached his peak level already. He fits as #3. DAT? I am not sure he can take the punishment but certainly not a #2 nor do i think, #3. He is a specialty guy and that works, whether offense snaps or S/T.

            You are correct about the supporting cast le it is growing in depth and experience and there are good players there. AS/11 has a true #1 WR with speed, intelligence and the ability to get separation out of excellent route running. That is not what Bowe was. We have #1 now, we need #2. Conley is #2 or 3 tain and the Chiefs will very likely in this draft, obtain starters in the first 2 or 3 rounds. I am very much looking foward to this draft. it is very, very deep for defense and WRs.

            Continuing to harp on it, there has been no QB in 3 drafts the Chiefs could have taken and who would have proved out. Their best chance at that was 2013. They went a different direction and there is no going back. That is a realistic view and a wasted pick for the possibles in my view had they taken one in round 3 2013, or Round 1 in 14. Now there were possibles in 15, but not the guys we know about on top. 2014? Bortles and Bortles has had no supporting cast one way or the other.

          • Brandon

            I think any aggressive QB would be blessed with the talent we have on the roster. Your telling me that the WR and offense is so weak with depth that we can’t successfully run an efficient offense with the supporting cast now taking steps forwards. Wilson(slot),Conley(X receiver) DAT(slot-sweeps esc.) Charles(he’ll come back and go back to the pro bowl), Maclin, Kelce. Those all are to me are a great foundation of rookies and Vets. That’s not even including West and Ware. The offensive line for the first time since the John Dorsey era will have how many returning starters? I mean even last year we replaced 3/5 Ryan Harris and Mcgynn @nd Hudson. That’s not the case this season. A lot of players that had playing time will return. We just lost depth with Stephenson and Allen.

            that’s funny you bring up Bowe. He mad 1.7 million dollars a catch last season. What do you think will happen there? He could be cut but all the guarantees his contract has they would see no upside cutting him. I personally think if he does hit the market that he should come back on a discount contract. Maybe that’s the fan in me talking. To me you get Bowe and Mathis the offense should be okay.

            I don’t see a lot of depth st receiver. This isn’t like last year where three receivers will be drafted in the top 15 I believe it was. Treadwell is the clear front runner but I’ve heard lots of cases of number two. Coleman,Boyd,Doctson. I even like some later round prospects like Miller,Mitchell, (Conleys old teamate) and the southern MO WR. To me its all on Smith from a yardage stand point we were great. Its just Smiths ability to throw for more TD’s. I blame this partly on Charles injury. Truth is he’s our redzone chess piece. I think I heard somewhere that Charles had more TD’s in 2013 and 2014 combined then anyone else. The chiefs on offense should be reliant on two of the three superstars we have along with the rest of the supporting cast small role players.

            Reid is a great Oline coach when he wants to be. Fulton and LDT I think are just a product of how he can mend any lineman to the best of his ability. After all he made Jason Peters an Undrafted TE into a pro bowler.

            ford has proven his value already forcing Hali into a pay cut but he might of taken that anyway who knows. Dorsey foolishly waited to long to sign Houston to an extension early and he paid bad for it. Now he’s going to have a top 10 receiver top 2 TE top safety Berry top OLB Houston. That’s not even beginning to mention Smith’s overly hefty contract, and Charles modest hit. Dorsey has put the franchise into such a place of success that every pending free agent can leave and make money anywhere. Forcing Dorsey in having to Build through the draft. Every player he picks has to be a hit because that’s the expectation now. From his first draft where he only scored two valuable players. To his last draft where everyone from your 5th round picks proved worthy.

            Kelce is the man. If he were on Pittsburgh or any team with a good QB he would of never received the label baby gronk. He would of challenged Gronk at top TE.

          • David E. Bell

            give it a rest on AS/11 Brandon. You and I will never agree. I feel that the discussion becomes “Micah-ish”. We have no proven #2. Conley will probably be fine. Draft another guy. McRoberts is the guy you refer to. There is also another WR from SMSt or was it Pittsburg St, hurt in camp last year. No doubt, Charles back is a total threat and with West/Ware, it is a solid RB corp with Sherman at FB. It would behoove KC to look to move one of them. Knile Davis’ fumble got me finally and he can go. That was a 10 point swing. Foolish and John Dorsey cannot be used in the same sentence. You foolishly think that, then you are not altogether solid in your thinking. Houston wanted a lot, Dorsey signed him. It was a big contract but it also is a reason for less cap space. We will son have that kind of problem with Berry(and that would be about 1/3 of the cap or a bit less, depending on Bonuses. Hence, Sean Smith is gone most likely. Howard is the next concern but we have to get Poe extended now my opinon. Bowe was never a #1 WR. Period. Right move to lose him with the kind of money that was booked. Which this year pays off. Again, both Dorsey and Reid wanted Smith over center(under as they say today). I am good with that and he may not be top 10 but he surely is close but you are wont to look at the aerial game as the be all of NFL Football. I don’t Indeed, I looked at all the teams that turned to the run down the stretch, but it’s okay if you like that stuff. Not me. I listed a few a post or ago. I don’t like Reid’s offense and personally he was not my choice as HC. He is a good one, he is a great motivator. He was never successful in who he picked as OL at Philly. Great OL coach? where’d you get that? This has drug on too long. The book is closed for now til the next signing. When that happens, we will know more about what will happen come draft time and probably a good deal the more

            when Combine & Pro Days are going on. WRs:

            Wide Receivers

            Ranked WRs are pretty deep. The first two in the draft are probably gone by #28 but it is possible that one is availab
            would be available at pick 28.

            Out of the gate, Ole Miss Jr Laquon, Tredwell(6-2, 210) is slotted to be a top 10 pick. Corey Coleman(Baylor,
            5-10-190) is ranked as player #24 by CBS.

            The way SI looked at WRs, was in this order: Sterling Shepard(OU), Leonte Caroo(Rutgers), Braxton Miller(OSU), Paul McRoberts(SE Mo. St), Aaron Burbridge(MSU),
            Jordan Payton(UCLA), Tajae Sharpe(UMass), Malcolm Mitchell(GA), KJ May(Minnesota), Jay Lee(Baylor) and a couple more. I highlight those I think rise to the top (in a later point in the blog). I think McRoberts is the guy, presuming Caroo, Miller and Mitchell are taken, irrespective of draft round. Thinking about it, I am /going to go with McRoberts and the more I find out about this player,
            the More I like him.

            Shepard(5-10, 191-Oklahoma) is projected in the 3rd
            round. For the Chiefs? He is undersized and probably not high on Dorsey’s list. The Upside for Shepard is that he was runner up for the Belitnikoff award, he has moves and runs routes well. Due to the size disadvantage and the Chiefs already having Wilson and DAT on the roster,
            I don’t think Dorsey would consider him in the first four rounds(my view only) though some compare him to Steve Smith, Jr.

            Braxton Miller is a different story though he was not projected in the 1st round, possibly the second. He did put on a show at practice but did not give us much during the game. Braxton though, is 6-2,215-OSU). As I
            mentioned in the first piece, OSU has a lot of talent for this draft class. Miller does fit what the Chiefs are looking for. Miller is a very talented athlete who could play multiple positions. If any WR showcased himself at Mobile, Miller did so and he probably moved up intothe second round possibility and maybe the first. Miller also fielded
            punts and worked at returning the football and impressed the scouts as Ihave read.

            One guy who I was taking a hard look at was Leonte
            Carroo(Rutgers, 6-0-217). He was projected to round three but was injured at Mobile and did not play. He was suspended for 5 games in 2014 and did have another public dispute for domestic violence(Charges
            dropped and phone video revealed that he was not a perpetrator and had tried to intervene in a situation). At Mobile, he was solid until hurt.He is a very solid, physical receiver who is explosive in getting separation and knows how to bait defenders. Another view of Carroo is
            that he is a round one selection(PFF) who has him as the 4th best WR available. I can’t see that necessarily but I am sure the Chiefs have him on the list.

            At Mobile, Malcom Mitchell(GA, 6-1, 196) fits the Chiefs view of WRs, especially considering he would be paired with Jeremy Maclin. He was a standout at Mobile and achieved separation deep which is something the Chiefs could certainly use. He has a bit of height, good ball awareness
            and can make catches being defended and take them down. His downside is inconsistency and route running needs work.

            Jay Lee(Baylor, 6-2, 214) also fits what the Chiefs will be looking for. Mitchell averaged 20 yards per catch for Baylor in 2015, he is a vertical threat with speed but has a “dropped Ball and confidence” reputation as well which
            is a big downside. At the same time, he has great hands, witness the one-handed grab he made in the Senior Bowl. Lee is a later round pick, 2-4 probably.

            Will Fuller(Notre Dame), should be a solid 3rd
            round pick. His value is rising though as the off-season progresses . One of the players who is garnering attention due to appearing both in the Shrine Game and the Senior bowl is WR Paul McRoberts( SE MO St). In practice McRoberts performed well. He has the height and speed that is intriguing, is projected perhaps in the 4th round but NFL interest appears to be increasing. McRoberts ( 6-3, abt 200) so he definitely has my interest, and here I think of WRs in the NFL that had big careers like Sterling Sharp who had this type of size. McRoberts should be a KC target and I will be following him closely. Besides, he is from a closeby school.

            Oops, almost forgot DeRunnya Wilson. He is a big receiver that must be considered in the list.

          • David E. Bell

            well, it wasn’t clarks article…waiting to hear back from him…

      • Eric

        I think PFF is showing that you don’t necessarily need brilliance from an OLine to be successful (check this list out The Chiefs are pushing that limit, however. There are some good options in FA, and the Chiefs have some room. Hopefully they find the right five.

        I think at TE you’re probably limited to development from O’Shaughnessy (recently drafted) or Harris (just re-signed). It may not be out of the question to get a fourth TE, but unlikely.

        On your last point, here are some interesting stats: PFF charged Smith himself with four of his sacks, while Wilson was charged with 14 of his sacks. Tyrod Taylor (just for comparison) was charged with eight. Thanks for reading.

        • Brandon

          I’m actually hoping that Dorsey purely just stays at home with every Free agent he might want to resign. If players like Smith Howard and Allen leave they could very well bring compensation picks for the draft. The only free agent I’d be interested in is an Evan Mathis. That would solidify that interior online(pending everyone stays healthy) but i do agree that you can survive without an Oline.

          That’s interesting that PFF was accounted to four of his own sacks that puts my theory out the window.

          I think the chiefs are more so in the market of WR and might go as far as saying if Braxton Miller is there in the second his recent dominance at the senior bowl will prove he’s worthy of a look. Chiefs just need more TD’s then FG. Honestly I want an Oline that can actually punch it in at the one when the clock is running and they have to. Shag showed promise and Harris well I feel like watching his progression is equivalent to watching paint dry and I was surprised to see him extended.

          • David E. Bell

            agree on the OLine and the short field. agree on a WR. I think Miller’s stock rose a lot but there are other fits. Dorsey will likely go with round 2 for a WR but who knows. I am hoping he keeps Allen, drafts a starter quality OT and go from there. Was it you Brandon who said that Fanaika was a panic signing. Mebbe and they let that money slide if Grubbs, Allen and draft pick are fit to the Oline. That might move Jah Reid to Swing it, which is what I think he would be steady at. I don’t think Stephenson is back and LD-T needs to develop further(made a lot of progress but needs a lot more).

            I don’t think you can get to the AFC Championship game without an efficient run/pass blocking OLine nor would that team be capable of winning the big bowl, mho. I worry the secondary due to Smith and Berry and needing another corner.

          • Brandon

            Millers stock did rise but he isn’t worth taking over Hunter Henry in the second. Millers stock did take a hit when they actually played the senior bowl and he had simple drops during the game. He had the opportunity to play with Wentz and couldn’t capitalize on his practice hype during a game.

            I claimed Dorsey panicked with the Grubbs trade. He could of waited for Mathis and Mathis would of not only filled in better but stayed healthy and already know the Reid way. Fainka signing was to build depth at the weakest position and he tried to find an inexpensive depth option. Also a fail.

            I could be wrong but Reid has never been a LT. His role in Baltimore was either guard(where he played majority of his snaps) and RT. Its 2 late to call him the swing guy in his career. Id rather draft a prospect in the fourth or fifth round that’s duty is to specifically man down the back up LT. When you move players around it henders their progression. This is why Allen says he wants to be somewhere that he can focus on one position.

            the only lineman I see us drafting in the first is Cody Whitehair. Decker,Conklin will be gone. Springs and Spencer draughn both struggled at senior bowl practices being manhandled all day. Cody was the outstanding stand out offensive likewise and it would sure up the interior of the line. For years to come with two local building block options. His best position would be RG. Either him or Evan Mathis. I don’t want to gamble on LDT’s progression instead I want to take advantage of what lil experience he did get and fo ahead and call him a depth guy kinds like Fultons role. Injuries happen and well be prepared with Fulton and LDT in the back up depth role.

          • David E. Bell

            have no disagreement here with above. I didn’t say or didn’t mean to say that Reid is a LT. Swing? If Whitehair is the pick (there are 3 or 4 of them possible), then I like that too. The think not to be missed about LD-T is his first step and power which is at times as good as anyone around–He is far speedier than any other guard. Fulton is a mule and horse and that is why when playing center he found a home. Morse is among the most versatile players and Allen has proven that as well. I have no difficulty taking Mathis in a deal at all. My one observation goes back to our own players and F/A’s and signing them first. Also, locking in Howard. The other guys are Chiefs down to Sean Smith who I question and who is not worth the tag or money like it which means our exposure is CB. Ryan Tracy PFS said he was able to sign them all within the cap and have money for the rookies. Next season you have two players remaining to lock up(Poe and Fisher). Zombo is Dorsey’s move and has been crucial in 3 or 4 ways and is cheap enough to have found a home. Hali, Berry, Abdullah, Howard etc, all want to be in the Kingdom. I think things will work out and it will be up to JD to find those two guys(plus) as he locked in in 2015’s draft

          • cyberry

            The Pats DT proved Fulton is just a back-up.. he doesn’t have foot speed or strength to be a starting center.. Fulton did ok against the Texans 38ish NT disowned from NE. But against strong DT/NT.. Morse did 36 reps (37 was highest) of 225 lbs at the combine and one of the fastest cone drills. Fulton did 25 and had the slowest cone drill of the whole combine.

          • cyberry

            Jah Reid just brought a Nastiness to the O-Line the Chiefs needed. Andy Reid avoids starting rookies, although he has with Fisher(supposedly best lineman in college) and Peters(best CB in college)..J. Reid doesn’t FORCE the Chiefs to sign or draft OT with first pick. It allows the Chiefs to sign the best player available. Plus, Reid did improve as the year went on. Even if the Chief’s draft a Tackle early, despite everyone thinking a 1st RD pick comes in and solves the problem.. It’s just not true.. Truth is, no one has any idea why some players transition in the pro’s easily and some it takes a while.. So, the secret seems to be (look at the top teams each year).. don’t put your team in a position to expect or have to depend on draft pick to contribute “from the start” . If they do.. fantastic.. Just like anything in life, when your not forced or obligated, things tend to work out better. Especially with all these rookie getting hurt in camp around the league.