Chiefs coach Andy Reid cited a single factor when asked why his players, for the most part, have participated.
“Just our leaders,” Reid said. “That’s what I attribute it to. We have leaders on both sides of the ball, guys that like to get better and work together.”
As Reid points out, team leaders like quarterback Patrick Mahomes, tight end Travis Kelce, safety Tyrann Matheiu and defensive tackle Chris Jones, among others, set the example by being present. And with other players following their lead, the Chiefs never had to worry about whether they’d have enough players on hand to do their essential on-field work.
Chiefs: L’Jarius Sneed, DB
KC • SAF • 38
Sneed proved to be quite the find for Kansas City, who selected him in the fourth round of the 2020 draft. He found an opportunity to play early in the 2020 season after Bashaud Breeland was serving his suspension and played well. Once Breeland returned, Sneed then moved to nickel corner and continued to play at a high level. In his nine games played (six starts), Sneed tallied three interceptions and allowed just a 59.6 completion percentage when targeted. When including playoffs, he allowed just a 66.6 passer rating when targeted. With his role expected to expand in 2021, Snead could become one of the latest superstars to burst out of the Chiefs organization.
37. WR Cornell Powell, Chiefs
Powell is a former four-star recruit who finally broke out for Clemson in his fifth year with the team (53 catches, 882 yards, and seven touchdowns), apparently in part because of a dramatic shift in his practice habits (head coach Dabo Swinney described the difference as “night and day,” per Dane Brugler’s draft guide). He’s a big-bodied catch-point winner and lands in a Chiefs offense that’s been searching for a legit no. 2 behind Tyreek Hill to emerge.
Breeland doesn’t hold any hard feelings against the Chiefs organization or Kansas City for how things ended after his two seasons with the team. He made it clear that if possible, he would have chosen to stay with the Chiefs.
“During that time in Kansas City, my heart was set on staying in Kansas City at the time,” Breeland said. “It didn’t work that way, but like I said before when one door closes another one opens. And the Minnesota Vikings, they really gave me that opportunity to come in and really provide my skillset to the team.”
Kansas City Chiefs: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB
Edwards-Helaire had a strong rookie season with 1,100 yards from scrimmage, but his workload was somewhat limited by the Chiefs. Kansas City should remain a pass-heavy offense with Patrick Mahomes at quarterback, but Edwards-Helaire should see bigger holes in the running game after the team revamped their offensive line.
Around the NFL
Deshaun Watson, who had requested a trade from the Houston Texans before multiple lawsuits alleging sexual assault and inappropriate behavior were filed against the quarterback, wants to join the Denver Broncos, former teammate Kareem Jackson said on a podcast.
“I’ve got a great relationship with Deshaun,” Jackson, who plays for the Broncos, told former NFL player Aqib Talib on his ”Catchin’ Fades” podcast. “I’ve been talking to him the last couple of weeks, man, and like, all he’s been telling me is like, ‘Jack, just tell ‘em, like, that’s where I want to be.’ ... He’s like, ‘I want to be in Denver.’”
While Washington Football Team coach Ron Rivera brought Harvard immunologist Kizzmekia S. Corbett in to speak to his players Tuesday night, Arians said Thursday, “I’m the specialist.”
He told players, “If you want to go back to normal, get vaccinated.”
Arians said the Bucs are holding a vaccine drive for players and their families at the facility.
“There’s going to be a long line over there right now,” Arians said. “We were pretty short up until now. Hopefully we have a pretty good line.”
The Bears have agreed to terms with Ohio State product Justin Fields on a fully guaranteed, four-year deal worth $18.8 million, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported. Fields’ contract includes an $11 million signing bonus, Pelissero added, and will also feature the standard fifth-year option that all first-round picks receive in their first contract.
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
They may be competing with each other for snaps in 2021, but their position gives them the chance to play alongside each other in the long term. They’ll need to build a good relationship to make it work at its best, and they’re off to a good start in that respect.
“We talk everyday,” Gay said about his and Bolton’s relationship. “I’m not a rookie, but it’s my second year and it’s his first year; we’re both still fresh in this thing. I tell him I’ll teach him the game as much as I can, cause I’m still learning from guys like Hitch, Ben, Dorian, and all those older guys. Whatever I learn, I pass it down to him; whatever I’ve been through, I pass it down to him, and we continue to stay close... it’s a good connection we have.”
A tweet to make you think
Today in #StudyBall we are looking at the @Chiefs D & the unique things they do with the versatility of their safeties @Mathieu_Era #DanielSorensen - so many similarities between teams, always try to pull out differences @QBConfidential https://t.co/bR3fBR5mfU— Kurt Warner (@kurt13warner) June 10, 2021
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