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Grading the 2008 Chiefs' Rookies

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The post-mortem on an ugly body continues with my grades for various Chiefs' rookies. This grade is tempered with preseason expectations and other circumstances that may have affected a player's production this year beyond what the box score indicates.

This grading is far from any exact science, or even a serious intellectual exercise. Still, there is nothing simpler and more direct than slapping a big fat "F" next to a player who has continued to disappoint you all year long (Which I didn't do this year).

Grades are after the jump. Make sure to leave your own in the comments.

DT Glenn Dorsey

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Glenn Dorsey got a bit of a bad rap this year from Chiefs' fan because he didn't come out in Week 1 destroying veteran NFL linemen. Well, that's the life of a rookie, even if you're the #5 overall pick. Dorsey led all rookie defensive linemen in tackles and I'm sure you didn't notice it.

His name was hardly called by the play-by-play commentators this season, which I personally think has a big unconscious effect on fans' mentality about a player. I know it affects mine. Dorsey's "low" production is more a result of how he's being used IMO. Grade: B

OT Branden Albert

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Do you remember last season when the Chiefs' offensive line was literally the worst in franchise history? Branden Albert helped take the offensive line issues completely out of the conversation. He was briefly injured a couple of times this year but for the most part he was an every down tackle as a rookie. His numbers are better than most of the other Chief offensive linemen, which isn't saying too much. Albert had a fantastic rookie season. Grade: A

CB Brandon Flowers

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This may be the easiest grade to give out of all of the rookies. Flowers played exceptionally well this past season. He had zero lag in the transition from college to the NFL. An all around fantastic draft pick.

Grade: A

RB Jamaal Charles

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Despite a few nagging injuries, Jamaal Charles had a pretty decent rookie year. He accumulated over 700 total yards in over 90 touches. He had a few fumbles and had the occasional memorable play as a running back but not much more than that. I expected a bit more out of Charles this year, especially with Larry Johnson being used as sparingly as he was. Grade: C+

CB Brandon Carr

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Carr and Flowers had almost equal statistical years, with Carr actually edging out Flowers in tackles. Both CBs had two interceptions.

For a Div. II player to start 13 games and do it well is a testament to Carr's potential in Kansas City. Another home run for the Chiefs.

Grade: A

K Connor Barth

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Barth ended up 2008 making 10 of his 12 attempted field goals. He at least appears to be the consistent kicker the Chiefs need. He could easily flame out in training camp or next season. Nothing is set in stone.

Grade: B

FB Mike Cox

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Cox played well enough this year. It's tough to judge a fullback. He didn't screw up, which I guess is a big positive in his evaluation.

Grade: B

KR Kevin Robinson

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In the eight games he was able to play in this year, Kevin Robinson was far and away our best kick returner. He didn't have the statistical numbers to make that statement but you could tell he was much more agile and quick than any of the Chiefs' other kick returners this season.

Grade: C+

CB Maurice Leggett

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Best undrafted free agent pick of the season for the Chiefs. Leggett played far beyond expectations and ended up winning the Chiefs' Mack Lee Hill award.

Grade: A

Incompletes: Will Franklin, DaJuan Morgan, Brad Cottam and others.

 

Cut & paste this player list into the comments and give us your own grades.

Glenn Dorsey
Branden Albert
Jamaal Charles
Brandon Flowers
Brandon Carr
Connor Barth
Mike Cox
Kevin Robinson
Maurice Leggett