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Arrowheadlines: Writers tip Chiefs to lose their AFC West crown

Chiefs headlines for Friday, July 15

NFL: OCT 10 Bills at Chiefs Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The latest

Pre-Camp Breakdown: The Duo of Nick Bolton and Willie Gay Jr. Could Be Special | The Mothership

Willie Gay Jr.

One of only three linebackers returning from last year’s team, Gay is undoubtedly one of the most exciting young players on Kansas City’s defense heading into 2022. A gifted athlete, the two-year veteran possesses the size (6-foot-1, 235 pounds) to stop the run but also the speed (4.51 40-yard dash) and agility to cover sideline to sideline.

Gay demonstrated that potential over the course of 12 games (11 starts) last season, amassing 48 tackles, four passes defensed, two interceptions and a tackle-for-loss. Now heading into this season as a surefire starter, Gay could be on the cusp of a true breakout campaign. As indicted earlier, he’ll largely man the “WILL,” or weakside linebacker role heading into camp, according to General Manager Brett Veach.

Overall, it’s not hyperbole to claim that the duo of Bolton and Gay is among the best young tandems in the league. If they can continue growing alongside one another throughout this season, they have what it takes to be special.

B/R NFL Expert Picks for 2022 Division Winners | Bleacher Report

Los Angeles Chargers (3 votes)

The AFC West could be absolute carnage (in the best way possible), since all four teams look to feature playoff-caliber rosters.

While the Denver Broncos and Las Vegas Raiders didn’t receive any votes from B/R’s pundits, both will be difficult opponents. But the Los Angeles Chargers gained a slight edge over the Kansas City Chiefs in this year’s voting despite the latter capturing the last six division crowns.

Why? Justin Herbert, an improved defense and a possible step back from the Chiefs.

Others Receiving Votes: Kansas City Chiefs (2 votes)

Kansas City Chiefs unveil special logo for their 50th season at Arrowhead Stadium | Kansas City Star

The upcoming season will be the 50th for the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium, where they had moved after playing at Municipal Stadium. In honor of the milestone season, the Chiefs released a special logo.

The Chiefs didn’t say how, or even if, they will also use the logo. But it seems possible the logo could appear as a patch on the player jerseys, or maybe as a sticker on their helmets. Another possibility is the logo being placed on the field.

NFL MVP 2022 cases: 13 previous seasons that show how Jalen Hurts, Matt Ryan, Trey Lance, Aaron Rodgers could win | ESPN

The candidate: Trey Lance, QB, San Francisco 49ers

The MVP season comp: Patrick Mahomes in 2018

The story in 2018: A prototypical modern quarterback took a redshirt year under an offensive genius before turning into a human highlight reel.

You probably saw this one coming. Mahomes, the No. 10 overall pick, started just one game during his rookie season, taking the reigns for a meaningless Week 17 matchup with the Broncos. He otherwise sat behind Alex Smith for a Chiefs team that featured devastating offensive weapons and legendary playcaller Andy Reid around a solid veteran quarterback. In Year 2, he threw 50 touchdown passes.

Chiefs RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire Likened to Patriots Hall of Famer: Exclusive | Heavy.com

Growing up in Louisiana, Brodie got to know former NFL running back and LSU product Kevin Faulk. Brodie’s father, Craig Brodie Sr., coached Faulk at Carencro High School and maintained a relationship with him after he graduated.

Brodie didn’t go as far as comparing CEH to Faulk, who was a do-it-all back for the New England Patriots during their dynasty run in the 2000s and would eventually be inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame. But that doesn’t mean from a size and skill set perspective that Brodie doesn’t see similarities between the two backs.

“Kevin is the same height as Clyde … and Kevin did everything, he returned punts, he returned kicks, he played receiver … he was arguably one of the best third-down backs over the last 20-25 years,” Brodie told Heavy during an exclusive interview.

But Edwards-Helaire’s abilities also provide standalone value in Brodie’s eyes.

“Honest to God, I think he’s made of rubber,” Brodie said of Edwards-Helaire. “Everything that he does he bends well … his bursts are ridiculous.”

Is the Kansas City Chiefs’ demise looming? | Fox Sports

But according to Emmanuel Acho, Kansas City is way ahead of itself with its self-evaluations, and while a number of its AFC foes improved during the offseason, K.C. got unquestionably worse.

Marcellus Wiley and Emmanuel Acho debate whether the Chiefs’ demise has been overhyped or not.

“[Their] demise is real,” Acho said Thursday on ”Speak For Yourself.” ”I was riding for them two years ago when they said they were going to win five, six or seven… Of the AFC playoff teams last year, I would submit five of the seven got better, or at least stayed the same. The Browns, Bengals, Ravens, Broncos, Raiders, Chargers got better. The Bills stayed the same. The only AFC team that got worse was the Titans, because they lost A.J. Brown. I believe the Colts will have a better quarterback in Matt Ryan.

Around the NFL

Tom Brady on eventual retirement: ‘I’ve realized I don’t have five years left’ | NFL.com

During a wide-ranging interview in May with Ramin Setoodeh of Variety, Brady said he doesn’t have a set plan for when he might retire but noted he’s “very close to the end.”

“I really don’t (know when I’ll be done playing),” Brady said in the interview, which was published Thursday. “I would say it’s year to year: Could this be my last year? Absolutely. Could I change my mind? Absolutely. I’ve realized I don’t have five years left. I want to do it my way. I want to give it everything I got and see where I’m at. My body feels really good. I’ve had a lot of traumatic injuries over the years, but if things go really smoothly and we win, that’d be great.”

In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride

4 Chiefs who should be enshrined on the team’s Mt. Rushmore

But before we dive into these titans of the Chiefs’ history, here are my honorable mentions.

Mitch Holthus: He is the voice of the Kansas City Chiefs. I don’t remember a time without him screaming, “Touchdown KAN-SAS CITY” and leading the hype parade from the beginning of training camp through the end of the season. I truly believe that no one bleeds red and gold more than Holthus does.

Travis Kelce: The tight end is in the conversation as one of the best tight ends of the game. Watching Kelce have fun on the football field — and his engagement with fans — has brought many people closer to the game. He’s one of my absolute favorites. I hate that I couldn’t squeeze him onto the list.

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