7/24 Camp Recap: Charles, Houston And Company Take The Field from The Mothership
Cheers rang out from the crowd on Thursday as Chiefs players ran onto the field for the first time in front of a crowd here in St. Joseph, Missouri. It was also the first time the entire team took the field together, as veterans reported Wednesday afternoon for the start of training camp.
One player whose appearance on the field on Thursday was met with plenty of excitement was running back
Jamaal Charles, who signed a two-year extension with the Chiefs on Wednesday.
Player Profile: Safety Daniel Sorensen from The Mothership
That all-American kid may have been initially noticed for his athletic ability, but he's remembered around his home town for as much more than athletic accomplishments.
Strauss fondly recalls a project Danny was working on to become an Eagle Scout. He organized people in his community to plant about 300 trees in his hometown of Grand Terrace, trees that are still there today and will forever serve as a reminder of Danny's efforts.
"It's not just football that people remember Danny for," Strauss said. "One of the big things in our football program was always having something that mattered bigger than you.
KCChiefs.com Photo Gallery: 7/24 Training Camp
KCChiefs.com Video: Chiefs Practice Report 7/24
KCChiefs.com Video: Training Camp 7/24: Justin Houston
KCChiefs.com Video: Training Camp 7/24: Derrick Johnson
KCChiefs.com Video: Training Camp 7/24: Alex Smith
KCChiefs.com Video: Training Camp 7/24: Dontari Poe
KCChiefs.com Video: Training Camp 7/24: Andy Reid
KCChiefs.com Video:Chiefs BluePrint: Scouts On The Chiefs 2014 Draft
KCChiefs.com Video: Safety Daniel Sorensen Highlights
KSHB Video: Jack And Frank Discuss Upcoming Chiefs Season
Observations From First Full Training Camp Practice from Chiefs Spin
Charles delighted fans from the very beginning of the scrimmages during practice, taking a screen pass from quarterback Alex Smith and following his blockers for a would-be touchdown.
The passing game overall was on display, with Smith demonstrating both accuracy and distance.
Smith and wide receiver Donnie Avery connected for a fan-pleasing deep bomb, and Smith finished up his work day throwing a laser pass caught along the sideline by leaping A.J. Jenkins.
Chiefs Welcome Back Jamaal Charles from The Associated Press via FS Kansas City
"It feels good," Charles said about the extension. "I just like to thank God first of all. I'd like to thank the Hunt family, my teammates and the fans, everybody that supported me. I didn't want to hold out. That's not my personality. I couldn't do it. I just wanted to get the deal done."
The two-time All Pro running back avoided a holdout.
"I thought he'd be here," Reid said. "I figured it would all work out. They were communicating. I would say if they're talking that's a good thing. I didn't really anticipate him not being here. I knew he wanted to be here and do this thing."
Five Questions: Kansas City Chiefs from ProFootballTalk
1. Did they take too many hits in free agency?
A whopping 60 percent of the team's offensive line bolted for bigger dollars in free agency, led by left tackle Branden Albert. The team now hopes that Eric Fisher, the first overall pick a year ago, will be able to play better on the left side of the line than the right, where he struggled as a rookie.
Also gone is Dexter McCluster, a versatile weapon who may or may not be replaced effectively by rookie De'Anthony Thomas.
On defense, lineman Tyson Jackson and safety Kendrick Lewis signed elsewhere, and cornerback Brandon Flowers was cut late in the offseason.
The departures, which weren't offset by many free-agent arrivals, will make it harder to run the streak of playoff appearances to two.
Letting Houston Walk Is A Brain Fart The Chiefs Absolutely Cannot Afford from FS Kansas City
"If you're not performing, you can't go ask them for money. So if you perform, be a good guy, be quiet ... I did everything they want me to do. I've been staying out of trouble since I've been here. I've been inspiring little kids, so I mean ... I think I'm a great person. I'm a good guy."
Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles, talking about himself.
But here's the funny thing: He could've been talking about Justin Houston, too.
Chiefs QB Alex Smith, LB Justin Houston Deflect Contract Concerns from Chiefs Spin
"I'm happy for Jamaal," quarterback Alex Smith said. "The guy is one of the most special players in the league and deserved it. I'm glad to see that get done."
But what about Smith's situation?
"For me, you guys know how I feel about this," Smith said. "This is no longer the time to be talking and speculating. Certainly the people talking - my agent and the front office - I told them the same thing. When something gets finalized, come let me know. Until then, don't bother me and that's the way I want it."
NFL Nation: 4 Downs - AFC West from ESPN
Teicher: 8-8. Kansas City faltered down the stretch last season, winning two of its final eight games. The Chiefs then watched several significant regulars leave through free agency. The Chiefs have holes at wide receiver and in the defensive backfield that they failed to adequately address. That doesn't mean they won't be playoff contenders. Despite the lousy record, the Chiefs quietly finished last season as one of the NFL's better offensive teams. They might be able to score enough points to overcome a shaky defense that couldn't hold a 28-point lead in last season's playoff loss against Indianapolis.
Kicking things off - Fred Williamson
Nicknamed "the Hammer," he helped lead the Chiefs to Superbowl I. Williamson made headlines for saying he'd hammer his opponents on the Packers during the championship game.
The Gooding family drove in from Iowa Thursday afternoon for a mini family-vacation and to watch the Chiefs' 2014 training camp.
The trio has traveled to St. Joseph, Mo., every year for the past five years to get up close and personal with their favorite players.
This is the final year the Kansas City Chiefs have a definite contract with Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph for training camp. The next five years, they'll have to have camp in Missouri, due to a contract with the state, but not necessarily St. Joe.
A lot of people visiting St. Joe for training camp told FOX 4 they wouldn't be happy to see the Chiefs move- ever. They say they love going to St. Joe, it's convenient, a quick trip, and they like the atmosphere. However, most fans FOX 4′s Abby Eden spoke with said they also would follow the Chiefs anywhere they went.
Chiefs Hint Smith Is Good, Not Great from Lindy's Sports
A decision must be made on the importance of the current starting quarterback to the team's future. Based on a lack of agreement to this point, it would seem the team would like to keep Smith, but it doesn't view him as a franchise player at the position.
Good quarterbacks are expensive in the NFL. Great quarterbacks are really expensive. Smith is a good quarterback. Are the Chiefs ready to give him mega-millions to solidify the most important position on the field?
If it is not Smith, then who is going to be the man?
Dontari Poe One Of NFL's Top Players from ESPN
For those with ESPN Insider access, Mel Kiper Jr. and Mike Sando have posted an interesting ranking of the NFL's top 25 players under the age of 25. Nose tackle Dontari Poe was the only Kansas City Chiefs player to make the list, which also includes 23 players who received honorable mention. Poe was ranked seventh.
Kansas City Grounds Crew Battles Fields Prior To Camp from StJoeChannel
Both 100-yard practice fields just north of the Griffons game day field are made up of Bermuda grass. It's a warm weather turf that's found throughout the sporting world.
"Golf courses in Arizona, Texas, Florida -- that's what they use there because it can take a beating; it comes right back," Howe said.
"When you have a 300-pound lineman pushing off, you want that grass to be solid so they do get great foot placement, and so they can push off," White said. "That field out there is definitely where they get it."
Mike Pound: It's Time For Some Football from The Joplin Globe
Personally, the start of the NFL training camps is when the Kansas City Chiefs may officially begin to break my heart. I love the Kansas City Chiefs and have since I was a kid living on Okinawa and bet my older brother that the Chiefs would beat the Green Bay Packers in the first Super Bowl. In retrospect, it wasn't a good bet for a couple of reasons.
Reason No. 1: The Packers were better than the Chiefs.
Reason No. 2: I made the bet not knowing that the game had been played a week earlier, something my older brother did know when he took my bet.
To this day, I'm not allowed to bet on sports.
Jason La Canfora: 'Alex Smith Is A Bridge QB For Andy Reid' from CBS Sports Radio
Even if Smith tests the open market, he probably won't find what he's looking for.
"He wouldn't hit a huge home run," La Canfora said. "I think he is somewhat limited. I don't know. This always struck me as a band-aid kind of situation where he was a bridge quarterback for Andy Reid. Andy needed somebody who was smart and bright and could embody everything that you want on and off the field, but who he was renting and who he didn't own long term - and I don't know that he ever will own him long term."
Respect Motivated Charles In Pursuit Of Contract from StJoeChannel
Coming off a season when he accumulated nearly 2,000 yards from scrimmage, Charles is now getting paid like an elite back, with only Adrian Peterson in the position group making more.
And Kansas City plans on getting its money's worth.
"We put a lot of pressure on him to do well in the games, to help us win," Johnson said. "He's our horse on this team."
Chiefs Fans Love Their Training Camp from KSHB
Chiefs fans from all over the nation go to training camp every year and the biggest draw -- are, of course, the players.
Visitmo.com went to the fans and asked them: What are your favorite things about training camp?
Here are a few of them:
A chance to see the team play up close and personal.
Also -- getting a chance to meet them and get their autograph.
And getting to meet other die-hard chiefs fans.
Key battle: Rishaw Johnson vs. Zach Fulton vs. Jeff Linkenbach, right guard.
The most interesting battle in Kansas City might be the competition going on for the backup quarterback job, but that's not the most exciting. You know what's exciting? Right guard battles. You can never have too many right guard battles in one division.
While the Chargers job came open because of an injury, the Chiefs job is open for a different reason: Free agency.
Decision Lens Raises $6.5M In Debt And Equity from Washington Business Journal
While it's a comparatively small part of its businesses, Decision Lens might be best known for providing software that helps sports teams, including the Kansas City Chiefs, make better use of data during the player selection process.
Inside Slant: Pass Defense Takes A Hit from ESPN
I know it seems that officials are always calling these particular penalties (defensive holding and illegal contact), but in reality they occurred on 1.6 percent of passes in the 2013 regular season, according to ESPN Stats & Information (285 calls in 18,136 attempts). The chart, meanwhile, shows the range of those penalties per team. The Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs each were called for 16, while the New Orleans Saints had only two against them. (The Seahawks were among five teams with 12.)