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The Chiefs players with the most to gain (or lose) this offseason

Just one of the subjects we discussed on Tuesday’s Arrowhead Pride Editors Show podcast.

Kansas City Chiefs v Buffalo Bills Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

On Tuesday’s Arrowhead Pride Editors Show podcast, Pete Sweeney and John Dixon each named the Kansas City Chiefs players with the most to gain (or lose) during OTAs and training camp.

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Here’s what they came up with:

Most to gain

John: defensive end Tim Ward

Ward, who was an undrafted free agent out of Old Dominion in 2019, has now had an NFL redshirt season (due to injury) and was on the roster for the last seven games of 2020. He was inactive for all of them except the Week 17 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, in which he was a starter — and turned more than a few heads with his play. With their investment in him so far, the Chiefs apparently feel that he is a player who can be productive for them. He needs to take advantage of the opportunity now before him: an opening across from Frank Clark. If he can’t become at least a rotational player before the season begins, the Chiefs will likely want to move on.

Pete: wide receiver Byron Pringle

Sammy Watkins is now a member of the Baltimore Ravens, and those 1,726 regular-season snaps need to go somewhere. Due to their experience and draft standing, the co-favorites to get them are Demarcus Robinson and Mecole Hardman — but Byron Pringle should be in the mix. Discussing the wide receiver position this offseason, Chiefs general manager Brett Veach has often mentioned the 2018 undrafted free agent out of Kansas State — and whenever called upon, he has seemed to rise to the occasion. At 6-1 and 203 pounds, he is a better size-and-shape fit for the “X” than Hardman, and he may have the fast track to regular playing time if he can ward off Robinson and rookie Cornell Powell. Pringle caught the attention of Dave Toub in 2020; is Andy Reid next?

Most to lose

John: cornerback Charvarius Ward

Last season, Kansas City acquired former first-round pick Deandre Baker, who looked impressive before breaking his leg in Week 17. Now the team has traded for another former first-round cornerback: Mike Hughes. Meanwhile, the Chiefs probably want to move L’Jarius Sneed — who was arguably the league’s best rookie cornerback in 2020 — from the slot to the boundary. And hungry young players like Rashad Fenton and BoPete Keyes — not to mention newcomers that include Manny Patterson, Dicaprio Bootle, Devin Key and Marlon Character — will be pushing for playing time, too. It all adds up to Ward having to prove that he deserves to remain one of the team’s starting corners.

Pete: offensive lineman Andrew Wylie

Over the past three years, Wylie has been one of my favorite Kansas City players to cover, stemming from his willingness to step in when needed everywhere on the line to his Twitter profile, which reads, “My Madden rank does not define me.” Wylie stepped in at right guard to win the Mack Lee Hill (team rookie of the year) award in 2018 when Laurent Duvernay-Tardif and Jordan Devey sustained injuries. He performed well at both guard positions in 2019 until his own injury cost him the Super Bowl run. He started the season at right guard in 2020 before eventually kicking out to right tackle for a “bat game” at New Orleans and the Super Bowl. His fortitude equated to 35 regular-season starts and five postseason starts during the Chiefs’ best three-year stretch in half a century. But thanks to the completely revamped offensive line, Wylie could very well end up on the bubble — and the outside looking in. How this shakes out for the 26-year-old is likely to depend on how many offensive linemen the Chiefs keep on their final roster — along with the camp performances of younger players the staff likes, such as Darryl Williams and Prince Tega Wanogho.

Also on the podcast: We discuss the prospect of the Chiefs going after Julio Jones, last week’s Bashaud Breeland update and preview OTAs, which begin this week.

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Who is your Chiefs player with the most to gain as the offseason workouts begin? To lose?

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