According to the football analytics outlet, Allen was the NFL’s best at preventing pressures from becoming sacks last season.
At the other end of the spectrum were some interesting names as well. The bottom three were the Cincinnati Bengals’ Joe Burrow (26%), the New York Jets’ Zach Wilson (26.3%) and the Cleveland Browns’ Baker Mayfield (29.1%).
Meanwhile, the New England Patriots experienced the healthiest season of any team in 2021, with just 23 games lost by their starters to injury/COVID.
In terms of fewest contests lost by starters due to an ailment, the Patriots were followed by the Buffalo Bills (36 games lost), the Kansas City Chiefs (40), the L.A. Rams (44) and the Atlanta Falcons (49).
To no surprise, four of those five aforementioned organizations were playoff teams this past season. Of the five, the only team that did not qualify for the postseason was Atlanta.
“It’s interesting when you’re handed a piece of information that you believe with all your heart is true, sounds true, is from a credible source,” Ohrnberger told Harmon. “And beyond that, it’s from a source that is expressing the fact that the story’s been vetted, and that it’s good for air or for (a) tweet. ...
“I’m not trying to play a victim here because I actually feel contrition for the fact that I spread a story out there that went viral. That wasn’t 100% accurate or well vetted, you know, so that is my responsibility as the broadcaster to make sure that not only the message is clear and accurate, but based on some further investigation and due diligence on my part that I failed to accomplish.”
Ohrnberger, who has a radio show in San Diego, later acknowledged he was scammed.
“This was an interesting situation because I thought I was having a text message conversation with someone who I trust deeply, with someone who I respect in this business deeply,” Ohrnberger added. “Someone who I’ve reached out to for advice from in the past, interview requests from in the past, and the context was accurate. The language was accurate in terms of this person comporting themselves as somebody who they were alluding to be and they weren’t.”
Dante Fowler Jr., Edge
During the 2021 season, the Chiefs recorded only 31 sacks, which was the fourth fewest in the NFL. So they need to do a better job of putting pressure on opposing quarterbacks in 2022, and Pro Bowl defensive tackle Chris Jones can’t do it alone. Kansas City needs to get stronger up front on defense.
It’s possible the Chiefs may even be looking to add multiple defensive linemen/edge-rushers this offseason so that one of their weaknesses could become one of their strengths in the near future. But one player they shouldn’t look to add during free agency is Dante Fowler Jr.
The 27-year-old has already played for three teams during his six-year NFL career, and he’s had inconsistent production. He had 11.5 sacks for the Los Angeles Rams in 2019, then recorded only 7.5 sacks in 28 games over the past two seasons for the Atlanta Falcons.
If Kansas City signed Fowler, it may not know which version of the edge-rusher it’s going to get. And considering the Chiefs are trying to win now, they can’t take a risk on a player who may underperform and not make the desired impact.
There should be quite a few strong defensive linemen available in free agency, so Kansas City should look elsewhere to bolster that area of its roster.
Around the NFL
The Pittsburgh Steelers announced the hire of Flores, who is suing the NFL and three teams, as a defensive assistant and linebackers coach Saturday.
“I am excited about Brian Flores joining our coaching staff given his history of developing and teaching defensive players during his time in the NFL,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said in a news release. “Brian’s resume speaks for itself, and I look forward to him adding his expertise to help our team.”
Flores’ hire significantly boosts a defensive unit that recently saw the promotion of Teryl Austin to defensive coordinator following the retirement of Keith Butler, who also coached the team’s outside linebackers.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians, who recruited Brady in 2020 and coached him for two successful seasons, is convinced that the 44-year-old QB is not planning a return.
“That would shock me,” Arians told Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times this weekend. “And he let us know in time to do the free agency like we’ve done in the past, that’s why I don’t see it happening. ...
“I don’t know if there’s really a story there.”
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
2. Chris Jones will be the only returning starter on the defensive line
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow was sacked a combined 16 times against the Tennessee Titans and the Los Angeles Rams. Against the Chiefs, he was sacked once. If the Rams taught us anything, it’s that even in a microcosm of a single play, defense still wins championships. Specifically, defensive lines win championships.
In his end-of-the-year presser, Chiefs general manager Brett Veach made a point to highlight that his philosophy for building a roster starts in the trenches — on both sides of the ball. He even said that the defensive line is the offseason’s No. 1 priority.
Making the defensive line your top priority could mean a lot of things. For the Chiefs, I think it’s going to be a mixture of losing guys to free agency, moving on from bad contracts and bringing in new players through the draft.
I think the Chiefs would love to bring Melvin Ingram back on a team-friendly contract similar to the one he signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers at the beginning of last season. The only problem is that last season, he was coming off an injury. Ingram was healthy for all of 2021 — and proved that he still has something left in the tank. If they want to retain him, the Chiefs will have to outbid the other teams who are seeking his services — and on the open market, his price could pretty quickly rise above what Kansas City is willing to pay.
Meanwhile, Frank Clark is due to make $26 million in 2022 — but the Chiefs can save $14 million if they cut him. Even if he were willing to make a team-friendly deal — restructuring his contract to take less money — I’m still not sure I want him on this team. Since arriving in Kansas City, Clark has struggled to stay healthy — and in each season he’s played for the Chiefs, his numbers have steadily declined.
With Jarran Reid, Derrick Nnadi and Alex Okafor all becoming free agents, the Chiefs’ front four is going to look a lot different in the coming season.
A tweet to make you think
If the Chiefs win the division next season, all four teams in the AFC West will have the same exact amount of division titles. pic.twitter.com/kpBF8BWio3— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) February 19, 2022