Aside from a blip of life a few nights ago with the Memphis Express’ addition of quarterback Johnny Manziel, the Alliance of American Football’s (AAF) luster has worn off a bit from its first few weeks. But that doesn’t mean we should necessarily wholly ignore what is happening.
Reporters asked Chiefs general manager Brett Veach about whether he was monitoring the AAF back in late February at the NFL Scouting Combine, and although the fact that he was seemed obvious, his description of how closely he is paying attention caught my attention.
“I certainly do,” Veach said. “The cool thing about the AAF is those guys have come through this whole process here. We have a database of those guys at the combine, original draft grades, pro grades, so there certainly are a handful of guys that we have liked and maybe for one reason or another, roster depth or not having enough space, we weren’t able to acquire those guys. There are a lot of players out there, and again there’s probably a handful of those guys that had they not been with an AAF team, might be on our 90 (-man roster) already.
“I think it’s a cool opportunity for us to see those guys in a competitive environment and kind of see where they are and how they have developed. We’re able to get their film now in on a weekly basis and we’ll kind of attack that like we do the CFL and the smaller colleges. We’ll have guys dedicated to that and continue to look in every way possible to keep finding players and keep adding talent to our team.”
Our own Kent Swanson discussed Wednesday morning how, despite the addition of Bashaud Breeland this week, the Chiefs’ need at cornerback is still very real.
Well, according to Pro Football Focus, the two best cornerbacks in the AAF happen to be former Chiefs.
Keith Reaser continues to be LOCK DOWN in coverage this season! pic.twitter.com/ZkA9rE6Mku— PFF_AAF (@PFF_AAF) March 20, 2019
We covered Orlando Apollos cornerback Keith Reaser’s Chiefs background back on February 19. Since then, Reaser, 27, has only continued to impress, compiling a total of 10 tackles (nine solo), three interceptions and as you can see, a 15.1 passer rating allowed on the season.
There was also this:
— Keith Reaser (@KeithReaser3) March 11, 2019
The second cornerback on PFF’s list is San Antonio Commanders CB De’Vante Bausby, who through six weeks has 12 tackles (all solo), a league-leading four interceptions, as well as a 28.6 passer rating allowed on the season.
The 26-year-old Bausby’s first job in the NFL came with the Chiefs as an undrafted free agent in 2015, but he broke his collarbone during OTAs that year. He returned for a second stint with the Chiefs in May 2017 but was released at final roster cutdowns. Bausby is from Kansas City—he attended Hogan Preparatory Academy and Pittsburg State.
Considering Veach’s combine quote and the team’s need in the secondary, both Reaser and Bausby must be on his radar as candidates to bring back once the AAF season concludes on April 27, conveniently the same day as the end of the NFL Draft. AAF players have a window from the April championship game to December 1 of the following year to sign with an NFL team.
Reaser’s Apollos (5-1) and Bausby’s Commanders (4-2) currently have the best records in the Eastern and Western conferences, respectively, and both teams could very well go the distance.
The Apollos play this Saturday at 2 p.m. Arrowhead Time on Bleacher Report Live, while the Commanders play later in the evening at 7 p.m. Arrowhead Time on NFL Network.
Who would you like to see the Chiefs bring back?
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