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2014 NFL Season Preview- Kansas City Chiefs
After finishing 2-14 in 2012, Kansas City Chiefs Chairman Clark Hunt fired head coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli. Hunt then went on to hire John Dorsey to be the team's new general manager and former Eagles head coach Andy Reid to lead the talented but lost team.
Reid took the last place team and turned them into a 11-5 wild card team. The team acquired quarterback Alex Smith through a trade with San Francisco and brought consistency to a position that the team has struggled with for years. Running back Jamaal Charles was the team's leading rusher and leading receiver and was the league's touchdown leader with 21. The wide receivers and tight ends were disappointing for the team. Dwayne Bowe's number were pedestrian at best and the tight ends never brought in any production.
The defense's performance changed midway through the year. In the first half they ranked towards the top, but in the second half they did a complete 180.
2013's rookie class was average at best. Tackle Eric Fisher was the top draft pick in 2013 and struggled to transition to right tackle but showed promise as the year went on. Running back Knile Davis proved to be a good complement to Jamaal Charles.
The team ended the season with an epic playoff collapse against Indianapolis. The Chiefs led 31-10 at half time but ended up losing 45-44 in a game where Jamaal Charles was lost after the fifth play with a concussion. In the end the 2013 produced 10 Pro Bowlers and a lot of promise for the upcoming season.
Chiefs 2013 Rankings
Opponent Passing yds
Opponent Rushing yds
NFL Rank- 24th
NFL Rank- 10th
NFL Rank- 25th
NFL Rank - 22nd
NFL Rank- 21st
NFL Rank- 24th
2014 marked the 55th season for the Kansas City Chiefs. Andy Reid's main goal in the offseason is to develop a team that won't collapse midway through the season.
After signing 13 free agents in the 2013 offseason, the 2014 free agency is a casualty for the team due to its low cap space.
Notable additions- none
Notable departures- WR/RB Dexter McCluster, T Branden Albert, CB Brandon Flowers
Chiefs 2013 Highlights
2014 NFL Draft
With the 23rd overall pick in the draft, Kansas City had many positions that needed to be addressed. Most notable in the secondary and at wide receiver.
Eric Berry is a Pro Bowl safety but the team needs someone to play opposite him that can complement his physicality. The team gave up an average of five plays over 20 yards in their last 10 games and the play of the safeties were a big part of that. With the surprise cutting of Brandon Flowers, the team needs to add cornerbacks in order to compete with the pass happy teams of the AFC West.
Dwayne Bowe only had one 100-yard receiving game all year and that was in the playoff game. The rest of the receiving corps proved to be very inconsistent and wouldn't be starters on any other team. Alex Smith needs two other receivers that can complement Bowe and can make plays.
The Chiefs ended up selecting Auburn defensive end Dee Ford with the 23rd pick. Ford was considered the best pass rushing defensive end coming out of college but was considered too small to play defensive end at the NFL level. It was a questionable decision by Kansas City for a couple reasons. First of all, the Chiefs play in a 3-4 and Ford isn't big enough to play on the line. And secondly, the team already has a great pass rushing duo in Justin Houston and Tamba Hali.
Kansas City also drafted notably players like Oregon running back De'Anthony Thomas in the fourth round and Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray in the fifth. Thomas is a great athlete and was considered to be the fastest player in college football but his size limits his usage in an offense. Murray was a four year starter at Georgia and showed improvement each year but he tore his ACL late in the college football season and wasn't able to participate in most scouting events.
De'Anthony Thomas Highlights
What to Expect
Adding De' Anthony Thomas fills the void left by Dexter McCluster. Thomas' skill set enables him to be used as an outside runner, a slot receiver, and return specialist. Alex Smith has progressed in the last three years and knows how to avoid making costly turnovers that plagued him early on in his career. Jamaal Charles will continue to be the team's most dangerous offensive weapon. With Branden Albert now in Miami, Eric Fisher can short to his more comfortable left tackle spot.
Defensively, they need to be more consistent and stay physical through the entire season. The team didn't do anything to improve the pass defense and will have to power through this season relying on the pass rush.
With the strength of the AFC West rising, don't expect Kansas city to have the same level of success this season. Denver, San Diego, and Oakland are all more than capable of beating them and will have to rely on the offense to put up points in order to stay in games.
Best record they can hope for- 9-7