When the 2022 NFL season begins in September, Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy will be leading an offense that is likely to see a number of changes. While the most frequently discussed reason for these changes is Tyreek Hill’s departure to the Miami Dolphins, no fewer than three other offensive skill players will not be on the Kansas City squad: wide receivers Byron Pringle and Demarcus Robinson — and running back Darrel Williams.
Speaking to the press on Saturday — just after the team’s fourth full training camp practice at Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph, Missouri — Bieniemy spoke about two rookies who will be taking up some of the slack. One of them is Western Michigan wide receiver Skyy Moore, whom the Chiefs selected in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft.
“Here’s what I love about Skyy,” he revealed. “This guy has a short-term memory. And that’s a great thing in this profession, because you can’t rely upon the past. So what may have taken place in the previous play doesn’t matter for the next play. The beauty of it [is that] he goes out and finds a way to get the job done on the next play.
“The [other] thing that he’s been great with: in the classroom, he’s been accepting the information — but on top of that, he’s seeing it. Now he has an opportunity to auto-correct. He very rarely repeats [a mistake] twice. But you’ve got to understand: he’s in this offense for the first time — and some of the things that he’s hearing and doing are the first time he’s ever done [them].”
The other rookie Bieniemy addressed was running back Isiah Pacheco, whom Kansas City selected in the seventh round out of Rutgers. In any other season, we might not be paying a lot of attention to the 251st pick — but before the draft, Kansas City general manager Brett Veach said that he expected a 1,000 yard rusher to come out of the last round or undrafted free agency. And the Chiefs rook Pacheco.
“He just has the right temperament,” said Bieniemy of the 5-foot-11, 215-pound back. “He’s a tough guy who doesn’t take anything for granted. He has that attitude and determined mindset that wants to be great — just like everybody in that group.
“But at the end of the day, he understands: ‘When I get those opportunities, I have to maximize [each] opportunity and make the very most of it’ — because he doesn’t know when that opportunity is going to come again.”
Still, the offensive coordinator gives a lot of credit to the team’s running back and wide receiver coaches — and the veteran players with whom they are working.
“Greg Lewis — along with our receivers coach Joe Bleymaier — those guys are doing a great job of getting those young guys ready. They’ve spent a lot of time with them throughout the entire offseason — plus they’ve had the opportunity to go through it during rookie minicamp.
”These young guys? They’re pretty good. They’re working. But on top of that, they’ve got a lot of veteran leadership in the room as well. And our older guys do a great job with our young guys: making sure they feel comfortable in that environment — and getting them to understand that when they’re on that field, they’re a representation of that group.”
Will these rookies be effective enough to help the Chiefs weather what might become a difficult transition in 2022? We don’t know. But according to Bieniemy, they have the right stuff.