Kansas City Chiefs
2010 record: 10-6
Last playoff appearance: 2010, 10-6, AFC West Champs, L30-7 BAL
General Manager: Scott Pioli (2009 – current)
Head Coach: Todd Haley (2009 – current, 14-18 record)
Offensive Coordinator: Bill Muir
Defensive Coordinator: Romeo Crennel
Defensive alignment: 3-4
2010 NFL Rankings:
OFF: 22.9 PTS (14th) 349.7 YDS (12th) 185.5 PASS (30th) 164.2 RUSH (1st)
DEF: 20.4 PTS (11th) 330.2 YDS (14th) 219.9 PASS (17th) 110.2 RUSH (14th)
Jeremy’s Outlook: A lot of team previews are calling for the Chiefs to regress after last year’s surprising AFC West title. They were handled pretty easily by the Ravens in the first round and followed it up by going 0-4 in the preseason. I will tell you that I put very, very little stock into preseason records, stats, etc., but if you’re not a team like the Patriots or Colts who don’t need to prepare like the rest of the league because you have an elite quarterback and you go winless, there might be something amiss. I’m cautious about the Chiefs repeating as AFC West champs.
The number one rushing attack from 2010 comes back intact, but there’s a big addition with fullback LeRon McClain. That addition could make the running game even more unstoppable. Jon Baldwin was drafted in the first round, but he’ll be out for a little while after hurting his arm in a training camp scuffle. Dwayne Bowe returns as the number one receiver. He needs to repeat last year’s play and not 2009’s. Matt Cassel is solid, but not spectacular. He finished last year with a 93 QB rating, so for Kansas City’s sake, they hope he repeats 2010 numbers as well.
On defense, the Chiefs return the majority of the starters from last season. Linebackers Andy Studebaker and Jovan Belcher will be starting across from Hali and Johnson, clearly night and day (both in skin color and proven talents). Studebaker showed some flashes of talent last season and the Chiefs are counting on him and Belcher to step up in their young careers. Kelly Gregg comes over from Baltimore to be the plugger at nose tackle. The young secondary could surprise and become one of the best young units in the league.
Prediction: Look below at KC’s schedule from week 11 to 15. That is one tough stretch and I’m seeing five straight losses as becoming a very real possibility during that part of their schedule. Plus they still have to play the Chargers and Raiders twice each, too. It could be a long season and that’s why many are predicting a step back for KC, and so will I. I think the Chiefs miss the playoffs and finish 7-9.
QB: Matt Cassel
RB: Jamaal Charles
WR: Dwayne Bowe
WR: Jerheme Urban
WR: Steve Breaston
TE: Leonard Pope
OT: Branden Albert
OG: Ryan Lilja
C: Casey Wiegmann
OG: Jon Asamoah
OT: Barry Richardson
1 Sep 11 vs. Bills 1:00 PM Tickets
2 Sep 18 at Lions 1:00 PM Tickets
3 Sep 25 at Chargers 4:05 PM Tickets
4 Oct 02 vs. Vikings 1:00 PM Tickets
5 Oct 09 at Colts 1:00 PM Tickets
7 Oct 23 at Raiders 4:05 PM Tickets
8 Oct 31 vs. Chargers 8:30 PM Tickets
9 Nov 06 vs. Dolphins 1:00 PM Tickets
10 Nov 13 vs. Broncos 1:00 PM Tickets
11 Nov 21 at Patriots 8:30 PM Tickets
12 Nov 27 vs. Steelers 8:20 PM Tickets
13 Dec 04 at Bears 1:00 PM Tickets
14 Dec 11 at Jets 1:00 PM Tickets
15 Dec 18 vs. Packers 1:00 PM Tickets
16 Dec 24 vs. Raiders 1:00 PM Tickets
17 Jan 01 at Broncos 4:15 PM Tickets
Terrance Copper WR – 3 yrs
Leonard Pope TE – 1 yr, 630,000
Ryan O’Callaghan OT – 1 yr, 1.759 million
Casey Wiegmann C – 1 yr, 2.5 million
Rudy Niswanger C – 1 yr, 1.759 million
Charlie Anderson OLB – 3 yrs, 7.35 million
Tamba Hali OLB – 5 yrs, 60 million, 35 million guaranteed
Corey Mays MLB – 1 yr, 1.759 million
Travis Daniels CB – re-signed
Brandon Carr CB – 1 yr, 2.61 million
Jon McGraw FS – 1 yr, 810,000
Free agent acquisitions:
Steve Breaston WR (Cardinals) – 5 yrs, 9 million
Le’Ron McClain FB (Ravens) – 1 yr, 1.5 million
Jared Gaither OT (Ravens) – 1 yr, 658,000
Kelly Gregg NT (Ravens) – 1 yr, 3.5 million
Brandon Siler LB (Chargers) – 1 yr
Picks in 2011 NFL Draft: (overall draft grade: A-): Prior to the 2010 season, Jon Baldwin was considered one of the top wide receivers eligible for the 2011 draft. He was right up there contending with AJ Green and Julio Jones. Unfortunately, the Pitt Panthers fell flat and Baldwin struggled right along with the offense. His character and skills came into question and caused his stock to drop to the second round. However, Chiefs’ GM Scott Pioli still sees that top wide receiver potential in Baldwin. Baldwin’s value wasn’t in the first round, but the upside could pay off for Pioli. After the Baldwin pick, there was great value in the 2011 Chiefs draft class. Rodney Hudson will bring excellent technique, youth, and versatility on the inside for KC and some valuable pieces on defense were added as well.
(! Indicates draft pick who was interviewed, had a private workout, etc. prior to the draft according to my compiled list):
Rd 1, Pick 26 (26) Jonathan Baldwin WR, Pittsburgh – I like the pick, but it wasn’t good value. The Chiefs needed a wide receiver quite a bit and Baldwin was the last of the potential number one wide receivers on the board.
Grade: B- Rated: 45
Rd 2, Pick 23 (55) Rodney Hudson OG, Florida State – smaller prospect, but this is right where I had him rated. Could move to center, Casey Wiegmann and Brian Waters are getting older.
Grade: A Rated: 52
Rd 3, Pick 6 (70) Justin Houston LB, Georgia! – GM Scott Pioli had one of the better drafts this year and here’s another gem. Houston will give some more pass rush capability to the KC defense and they could be losing four linebackers to free agency.
Grade: A Rated: 36
Rd 3, Pick 22 (86) Allen Bailey DE, Miami (FL)! – Bailey has very good athleticism, but he’s a ‘tweener. I think his best fit is at 3-4 end, which is where the Chiefs will play him. He doesn’t have the explosiveness for end and lacks the bulk for inside.
Grade: A Rated: 58
Rd 4, Pick 21 (118) Jalil Brown DB, Colorado – has the size and speed to be an NFL corner, but still needs some work before he’s ready to start. There wasn’t much behind Flowers, Carr, and Arenas at corner for the Chiefs.
Grade: B+ Rated: 133
Rd 5, Pick 4 (135) Ricky Stanzi QB, Iowa – Ricky Stanzi QB, Iowa – Stanzi was a favorite of mine prior to the draft. His improved numbers and decision making from his junior to senior season and his clutch performances impressed me.
Grade: A Rated: 87
Rd 5, Pick 9 (140) Gabe Miller OLB, Oregon State – upside pick as he’s only played on defense since 2009.
Grade: D Rated: NR
Rd 6, Pick 34 (199) Jerrell Powe NT, Mississippi! – nose tackle prospect with work ethic concerns.
Grade: A+ Rated: 98
Rd 7, Pick 20 (223) Shane Bannon FB, Yale – hard worker, will create some fullback competition.
Grade: D Rated: NR
2010 Stat Leaders
Matt Cassel 262-450 58.2% 3116 YDS 6.9 YPA 27 TD 7 INT 93.0 RTG
Jamaal Charles 230 ATT 1467 YDS 6.4 YPA 80 LNG 5 TD
Dwayne Bowe 72 REC 1162 YDS 16.1 YPR 75 LNG 15 TD
Ryan Succop 20-26 76.9% 53 LNG
Derrick Johnson 121 TCK
Tamba Hali 14.5 SCK
Eric Berry 4 INT
Out of Season Storylines (Because there is no offseason)
Charlie Weis Leaves To Become Offensive Coordinator at UF