I owe you an apology, sir. Since the announcement of your reserves/futures signing to the Kansas City Chiefs I’ve been openly critical of you. I haven’t given you much of a chance to make this team. Organized team activities won’t begin for another month and I’ve already counted you out. I think it’s high time that I confess and beg your forgiveness.
Give me a moment to explain why I’ve previously been so opposed to the idea of you sticking in Kansas City. You see, it’s not often that a football player who’s spent six seasons playing Canadian football successfully makes the transition to the NFL. Typically, players who are able to make the jump do so in 1-2 seasons. After going undrafted in 2008, you signed a CFL contract to play for the Saskatchewan Roughriders. That’s quite a long time and it makes me wonder if you truly have what it takes to succeed at the highest level of professional football.
There are a number of former CFL players who’ve gone on to flourish in the National Football League. Names like Warren Moon, Joe Theismann, Doug Flutie, Jeff Garcia, Raghib Ismail, and Mervyn Fernandez come to mind. The reality though is that the road to the NFL, from north of the border, is mostly paved with tales of failure. I can’t immediately tell which group you’ll ultimately belong to, but there is precedent for the transition you’re hoping to make.
I’m aware that you hauled in an average of more than 70 balls per season in Saskatchewan. I know that you amassed 6,531 receiving yards during your CFL tenure. In your first season with the Roughriders, you were named the league’s Most Outstanding Rookie. You were twice selected as a CFL all-star. You’re a four-time Western division all-star. Mr. Dressler, you had a successful career in the true north.
I feel like I’ve seen this movie before, Wes. Back in 2007, Kansas City’s front office signed a former Arena Football League wideout named Bobby Sippio. In the season prior to joining the Chiefs, he caught 125 passes and scored 53 touchdowns. Everyone was convinced he didn’t belong in the AF ranks. His stint with Kansas City was actually his second NFL stop. He initially found his way to the league by way of the Miami Dolphins (in 2004). He played for two NFL teams, but never registered a catch. Can you see why I’m concerned that touting you as a replacement for Dexter McCluster might be a bit premature?
Unsurprisingly, you’ve been compared to another diminutive NFL wide receiver with a similar name. I’m sure you know him. He actually plays in the same division. Should you make the team, you’ll get a chance to see him up close a couple times in 2014. He’s the best NFL example for a player of your stature. If you’re under six-foot, run good routes, and have sticky hands, chances are you’ll be compared to him. I’m not sure that’s a realistic expectation for you, but at least we know your size won’t be an issue if you’re half as talented as he is.
With McCluster gone, there’s opportunity for you in Kansas City. You’ll be competing with a few other young receivers with potential, but you have as good a shot at nabbing a roster spot as A.J. Jenkins and Junior Hemingway. Those two players have flashed the ability to play in the NFL, but they’ll only have a step or two on you once training camp opens. The playing field at One Arrowhead Drive will be fairly level. Barring another signing in free agency or a high draft pick, you’ll be in the thick of the race for the slot.
I have no idea what to expect of you over the next several months, but I’m willing to reserve judgment. You deserve a real chance to show this stubborn old Chiefs’ blogger what you’re made of. A football player your size has probably spent the better part of his life defying the odds. I hope you’ll accept my apology and make a fool of the old me. The guy who once snickered at the mere mention of you making this football team. I’ve been wrong before, just ask Cyrus Gray.
What say you, Chiefs Kingdom? Will Weston Dressler be a Kansas City Chief in September? Can he truly replace the production of the departed Dexter McCluster? Is he cut from the Wes Welker mold or is Dressler just another Chad Hall in waiting? Use the comment section below to chime in. As always, we appreciate your readership and support.
Until next time, Addicts!