While last night’s game ended on a bit of a sour note for the Chiefs, there were plenty of positives to take away from the game.
And on a day where we learned the team’s first round pick got in a fight and cracked his freaking thumb…we need all the positives we can get.
I’ve watch the game twice now and I’ve got some observations to share. Let’s get to it.
1. Justin Houston looked good
How can you not look good racking up two sacks in your second NFL game? Sure Houston was playing against reserves but his athleticism and quickness was on display. The kid can fly. Other than an embarrassing play where he got juked out of his cleats by the Baltimore backup QB, Houston had a great game. He isn’t ready to play every down but it is time the Chiefs start testing him out in pass rushing sub-packages with the starters. He is an impact player.
2. Verran Tucker is going to make the team
After the flashes he showed last season, along with his excellent special teams play, I figured Tucker was a lock to make the team. Still, the Chiefs added a lot of receivers this offseason and sometimes tough decisions have to be made.
After last night, I don’t think that will be the case with Tucker.
Verran caught three of the four balls thrown to him by Tyler Palko. The last was a poor throw he couldn’t reel in. Tucker finished with 68 yards receiving for an average of over 22 yards per catch. He looked sharp running his routes. Tucker’s rawness appears to be softening a bit. He offers big play ability that the Chiefs need at receiver. They need to keep developing this kid.
3. Jerheme Urban is still a non-factor
Haley loves Jerheme Urban but he just isn’t making the most of his opportunities. He was unimpressive in preseason last year before getting injured and he is continuing that trend this year. If Baldwin is going to miss the rest of the preseason, the Chiefs should give Tucker a look opposite Bowe.
4. Tyson Jackson looks better
He’s still stiff but Jackson is demonstrating a much better field awareness than I have seen from him in the past. He is tracking the ball better and he applied pressure on the QB on a number of occasions last night. He is coming off blockers better and it is clear his technique is better. Jackson is starting to remind me a little bit of Glenn Dorsey from 2010…which would be a huge step forward.
5. Quentin Lawrence needs to go
Lawrence is a bust. The Chiefs seem desperate to find a roster spot for Lawrence. Moving him to CB and giving him time as a kick returner. He is good at nothing and bad at everything. He got burned playing corner last night and he muffed a punt. There has to be another CB out there that can provide better depth than a converted WR.
6. Dwayne Bowe looks great
Bowe looked as if he was in midseason form last night.
7. Steve Breaston is still wading into the pool
The Chiefs are slowly integrating Breaston into the offense. A little too slowly for my tastes. He was only targeted once last night. He caught the pass for five yards. With the recent troubles with Baldwin, Breaston’s presence is going to be even more important. The Chiefs should make an effort to get him some more action next week.
Those are just a few of my thoughts from last night. What did you see?