What We Learned From Chiefs Media Availability Monday from The Mothership
Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Doug Pederson was glad to see tight end
Demetrius Harrisback on the practice field.
"It's just a matter of him getting his sea legs back with him," he said. "From our standpoint, it's great to have him back and to see him back on the field, but really for him to get himself into football shape is kind of the expectation we have going forward. It's just a matter of him processing the stuff we've been doing throughout camp."
Pederson was asked about what made the three-tight end set, which Harris was a part of in 2014, work so well last year.
"It's being able to spread them out away from the ball and use them in bunches and clusters," he explained. "They were athletic guys that not only run, but can also run routes and catch the football. So I think that was a little bit of a change for defenses that were scouting us and had to be prepared for that. It's something that will continue to grow as a package on offense."
Ben Grubbs' Veteran Presence Helping Chiefs Young OL fom The Mothership
While Grubbs has the talent and résumé to command respect from a young offensive line room, his initial goals weren't about setting the example for these younger players through his words, but through his actions.
"When I first came here, I was more consumed with the sense of making sure I knew my job," Grubbs explained. "I kind of shied away from being a vocal leader. I wanted to let my play speak for itself, and I wanted to make sure I was doing the right things first.
"Now that I'm more comfortable in the offense, I am speaking out a little more."
Grubbs' natural personality isn't to be loud or vocal, but his calm demeanor and quiet confidence is a great fit for this young group.
Chiefs TE Travis Kelce leaves Monday's practice from Chiefs Digest
Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce left Monday afternoon's practice with an undetermined injury.
An update on Kelce's status, however, won't arrive until Tuesday when coach Andy Reid addresses reporters.
Kelce walked off on his own power.
Chris Conley replaced the injured Albert Wilson in the starting lineup at one of the wide receiver positions. Wilson, who injured his shoulder in last week's game against Tennessee, may eventually get his job back. But Conley could make the decision difficult by playing well as long as Wilson is out.
Chiefs welcome back TE Demetrius Harris, plan to ease him in from Chiefs Digest
The Chiefs are happy to have Harris back on the field, but a realistic timetable on his return to full form won't come immediately.
"He's run routes, he's done some things that way," Pederson said. "But it's one thing routes on air versus bodies on defenses and making those transitions that way. It's going to take some time and we can't rush him back, either. We got to continue to monitor that progress as we go.
Harris, who admits he felt a "little sluggish" Sunday, suffered a season-ending fractured right foot innocently enough during pregame warm-ups against the Buffalo Bills on Nov. 9.
Still, Harris' return is positive news for the Chiefs and he'll be worth the wait. The Chiefs were at their best last season when they were able to use their three-tight end formations that featured Anthony Fasano, Travis Kelce and Harris.
Quarterback Alex Smith was 22-of-25 with an astronomical passer rating of 129.1 rating last season with the three tight ends on the field at the same time.
The Chiefs' offensive production dropped off in the second half of the season. They averaged 25 points per game over the first eight versus 19 over the final eight.
One reason is the Chiefs could no longer go to the three-tight end formations they favored.
Three starting jobs remain open as Chiefs wrap preseason from Chiefs Digest
However, there remain decisions that Andy Reid and his coaching staff must make at three positions: right guard, right tackle and one of the inside linebacker spots.
Whether due to uneven performances or injuries (or both) there are not clear starters at each spot for the game against the Texans. Here's a look:
Chiefs expect other teams to snap up their cuts for first time from The Associated Press via FS Kansas City
The first year that general manager John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid were in charge of the Chiefs, they were so short of quality depth that they snapped up seven players on waivers.
This year, the Chiefs could have that many of their own claimed.
It's another demonstration of just how far the franchise has come in three years, from a team that was 2-14 before their arrival to one that expects to challenge for the AFC West title.
Thumbs-up for Chiefs QB Alex Smith from ESPN
A quick observation of Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith and how he has played in preparation for the season opener on Sept. 13 against the Houston Texans.
If last impressions are what counts, Smith will have a great season. He had a great game in Friday night's preseason victory against the Tennessee Titans, completing 16 of 18 passes for 171 yards and two touchdowns. Smith also completed two passes of more than 25 yards, his first such plays of the preseason.
How have your altered your pass-rushing approach as you've gotten older?
Hali: I wouldn't say I've changed anything. I don't believe I have. I've been watching film from last year. I beat a bunch of guys. That's what's more gratifying for me, being able to beat the guys one-on-one. The sacks are going to come. Last year, looking at it, it didn't fall the way I wanted it to, but I can't really dwell on that right now.
Because of the rule change, the Chiefs and Santos worked plenty on kicks from 33 yards during offseason practice and training camp. That didn't seem to matter on his first try against the Titans, when the kick went wide to the left.
"He pulled it," Toub said. "It's a field goal. It's a 33-yard field goal. I'm glad he got it out the way now [so] it doesn't show up during the regular season. That's the way we're looking at it. He just yanked it. We'll fix it..."
Predicting the Chiefs' 53-man roster, version 3.0 from Chiefs Digest
OFFENSIVE LINEMEN (9): Eric Fisher, Ben Grubbs, Mitch Morse, Jeff Allen, Donald Stephenson, Eric Kush, Zach Fulton, Paul Fanaika, Jarrod Pughsley.
OVERVIEW: The Chiefs will likely keep around nine offensive linemen and the above players are the best that they have on the roster. There is an opportunity to add depth at two positions in center/guard and guard/tackle with roster cuts from around the league. Pughsley will be the toughest decision the Chiefs have among these nine. He has technique and talent worth developing, but trying to sneak him on practice squad would be risky. Duvernay-Tardif did not make the cut because he still gets beat by the same moves and doesn't appear to understand the angles of his blocks. He has seen two weeks with the first team offense, but evaluation shows a lack of progress.
MISSING THE CUT: Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, Garrett Frye, Daniel Munyer, Tavon Rooks
Packers debut at No. 1 in NFL FPI from ESPN
Below are the first Football Power Index rankings for the 2015 NFL season. For a full explanation on how the FPI is put together, please read this explainer. For more background, you can also read this Q&A with the developers of the FPI.
AFC West preview: Maclin can spur Chiefs to top Manning's fading Broncos from The Guardian
1) Kansas City
2) San Diego
Latest NFL Division Preview: The AFC West from Forbes
Unlike the other division previews you can find on my page, the margin for error here just isn't there. Denver could very well pull away and win 11 games. It could also struggle finishing with a winning record. In terms of Kansas City and San Diego, I wouldn't be surprised to see both contend for a playoff spot as the season progresses.
Whether it's Manning's age, the coaching change or the make up of this year's roster, the Broncos are thought by some to be beatable this year.
The latest person to dump the Broncos and jump on the Chiefs bandwagon: former Chiefs star Tony Gonzalez.
"I think the Chiefs are going to win the AFC West this year. I really do," Gonzalez said on KCTV5. His reason is simple: overpowering defense.
"With the return of Derrick Johnson and Eric Berry on the defensive side of the ball, if Dontari Poe can pick up where he left off as one of the most dominant nose guards in the league, with Justin Houston coming on the edge, they're going to be phenomenal. One of the best defenses in the league," the Chiefs great said.
Reid gains Chiefs' trust entering third year from KC Star via The Hayes Daily News
Reid's quarterbacks say their head coach, who also calls plays, does a nice job custom-fitting his offense toward what they do best.
"Coach Reid will call plays that Alex loves and knows Alex is good at," Daniel said. "It does take time to understand, as a play caller, what your quarterback loves, and Coach Reid has all of us down on what we know, what we do well.
"You might see a little naked (boots) out there with me. You might see, with Murray, a little more quick game or go routes. With Alex, you see a little of everything. He's very timing-driven."
'Concussion' Trailer: Will Smith Takes on the NFL from Screencrush
As the NFL regular season gets ready to begin and millions of fans get ready to draft their fantasy league, there are some sobering details about professional football that few are aware of and many would like to ignore: concussions. Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) or "post-concussion syndrome" is a disease that is plaguing pro football players. On December 1, 2012, Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher killed his girlfriend (and the mother of their child) then drove to Arrowhead Stadium and committed suicide. Earlier that year former San Diego Chargers linebacker Junior Seau shot himself in the chest. Both suffered from post-concussion syndrome.
As of December 2012, thirty-three former NFL players have been formally diagnosed post-mortem with CTE. As the NFL continues to try to bury the issue (they recently denied permission to Seau's daughter to speak in-person at her father's Hall of Fame induction ceremony over fears she would publicize the CTE debate), a new film looks to tackle the issue head on and today we have our first look at Concussion.
NFL NETWORK'S A FOOTBALL LIFE RETURNS WITH 14 NEW EPISODES from Awful Annoucing
Produced by NFL Films, this is one of NFL Network's signature series just like ESPN's 30 for 30 documentaries and has included past profiles on Bill Belichick, Walter Payton, Tom Landry and Tim Tebow as well as various iconic moments like the Immaculate Reception, the departure of the Cleveland Browns, and interesting subjects such as the forward pass and the Los Angeles Rams' Fearsome Foursome.
This season begins with a profile of former Kansas City Chiefs running back Christian "The Nigerian Nightmare" Okoye.
Thumbs-up for Texans QB Brian Hoyer from ESPN
Sunday, Hoyer took command of the role that was finally, officially his. He completed all three of his attempts on his first drive, showing a burgeoning chemistry with Hopkins that will drive the Texans' passing game this season. Hoyer stayed in the game as the Texans rotated out the players around him and finished with seven completions on 11 attempts.
Fantasy Football 2015: Under-the-Radar Players Worth a Look from Sports Illustrated Kids
I'm not sure we've ever seen a receiver coming off a top-10 season go into the next year with an ADP that places him outside the top-25 receivers, but that's Maclin's reality. The new Chief's ADP makes him the 26th receiver off the board in a typical 12-team draft, right behind Sammy Watkins and Jarvis Landry, and just ahead of Nelson Agholor. Maclin appears to be paying for the sins of the receivers who came before him in Kansas City, and that's a serious mistake being made by the market right now. Yes, this team got zero receiving touchdowns from its receivers last year, and Alex Smith is not the most risk-taking quarterback in the league. There are, however, two unavoidable truths regarding that infamous record.
First, it's a total fluke...
...Second, Maclin is much better than Dwayne Bowe, Donnie Avery or any of the other receivers the Chiefs trotted out last season.
Dustin Colquitt: Greatest of all time from The Kansas State Collegian
Now that we fans of Kansas City have a good team to root for and invest our time, energy and emotions in, I wanted to look back on a time when things were very different.
Dustin Colquitt and I both came into the NFL in 2005 - him as a player, me as a fan (and an unhealthily obsessive one, at that). He was drafted in the third round of that 2005 NFL draft, 99th overall out of the University of Tennessee. Some of my first football memories are of him and the ‘05 team (which barely missed the playoffs) and the '06 team (which barely made them). This was the world of Chiefs football I was born into, and I certainly was not prepared for the bad times that were to follow.
As soon as I knew enough about football to understand what was happening, the team collapsed.
Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith puts Bay Area home up for sale from The Los Angeles Times
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith, now three years removed from throwing his last pass for the San Francisco 49ers, has put his home in Monte Sereno, Calif., on the market for $3.999 million.
The French Villa-inspired home, built in 2010, features a polished Old World vibe with 100-year-old reclaimed wood beams, antique limestone floors and arched French doors and windows among the interior details.
Quebec in the NFL: giant steps for Laurent Duvernay-Tardif from Le Journal de Montreal [translated from the original French]
A WORD ABOUT ALEX SMITH
"The first time I saw him, he greeted me and asked about my medical studies. He knew what I was doing and seemed genuinely interested. I have nothing but good to say about him. "
LIFE IN KANSAS CITY
"My girlfriend stays in Montreal, so I took a small apartment in downtown Kansas City so that it moves a little. I'm not very sorteux, but I like the life of the American Midwest. Everything is easier this year next adaptation. "