It was a fantastic year for the Kansas City Chiefs. From the opening kickoff on Monday Night Football to the final whistle in the NFL Playoffs, the Chiefs gave us more than we bargained for this year* and for that we should be thankful.
*This is not entirely true. Big Matt told me he struck a deal with Satan. Matt offered up his eternal soul for a KC Chiefs Super Bowl win but it appears the Dark Prince failed to come through so Big Matt can still be saved. For now…
Anyway, I am sure there will be plenty of grade cards being handed out here this week at Arrowhead Addict and around the web. Professor Paddy has gone through all the term papers and it is time to dish out some punishment.
Cameron Sheffield, Jerhemy Urban, Tervaris Johnson, Chandler Williams, Mark Simoneau, Kevin Curtis, Jeremy Horne, Jackie Bates, Travis Daniels, Charlie Anderson, Reshard Langford, Ricky Price, Anthony Toribio
The incompletes mostly go to the guys on IR and guys we really didn’t see enough of to grade.
It is particularly disappointing that we didn’t get to see more of Cameron Sheffield, although if Mike Vrabel’s intangibles kept Andy Studebaker on the sideline for most of the season I doubt Sheffield would have gotten on the field. Still, he lost a year of experience and a chance to get in on special teams work.
The rest of these guys are basically unknowns. Urban may have helped KC’s pathetic group of receivers and Curtis is likely too old to be brought back but you never know.
Horne showed some promise but it turned out he was the poor man’s Verran Tucker…and that isn’t saying much.
These are guys that are on IR that I doubt will be back. Cottam is definitely a goner. Leggett has some potential but he spends more time on IR than on the field. I think the Chiefs are strong enough at corner that they will be looking primarily for depth this offseason and they can find Leggett-like-depth on the scrap heap in a guy who can stay healthy.
I’ll address Washington in my grades.
Chambers was such a piece of crap for the Chiefs this year that he gets a grade that doesn’t even exist. Congratulations Chambers. You get a F-. In this case, the F stands for useless, lazy loser.
He is incredibly athletic but he can’t tackle and he can’t cover. Washington is like a fast car that pulls so far to the right that you can’t keep it on the road. The difference is that the car can be fixed. Washington may hang around another year because he is a Pioli pick but he is as useless a player as the Chiefs have.
A backup QB is supposed to step up when his team needs him. Brodie failed to do it. F.
Somehow Lawrence ended up on the roster at the end of the year. I don’t know how. See Washington, Donald.
I can’t believe this guy started for KC for an entire year. I can’t even recall him making much of an impact on special teams. He only had 6 tackles all year. I’m not impressed.
I considered giving O’Connel a D or D- because he sucked less this year than he did last year but then I realized he still sucked enough to get an F.
Vrabel is finished. He can’t rush the passer and he isn’t fast enough to run down ball carriers any more. Intangibles and experience can only take you so far in the NFL. I am glad Vrabel was around to teach Andy Studebaker but I am also pissed Vrabel was around to hold Andy Studebaker back. I as positive the Chiefs would slowly faze Vrabel out and Studebaker in but it would appear that Pioli didn’t have the guts. The Chiefs missed an excellent opportunity to kick the tires on Studebaker to see what he’s got this season.
While Williams provides decent depth at ILB, he wasn’t so hot on special teams, running into the kicker a couple of times. Sorry Demorrio but that isn’t good enough to get a passing grade.
T-Jax showed some improvement but the fact that he was the 3rd pick in the draft and that Perv Smith and Wallace Gilberry combine to be a better DE than him, he fails. The Chiefs should give him another chance next year because I believe most draft picks deserve about 3 years to develop but if Jackson fails to show up ready to go next season the Chiefs should see if they can trade him for a can of Spam. The most impressive thing Jackson did all season was trying to rip off a man’s head yesterday right in front of an official and somehow avoided getting a flag.
Meh. Castille. Cool name. That’s it.
Rudy failed to get on the field even when Casey Weigmann wasn’t playing all that great. Although, as Mike Vrabel has taught us, intangibles are more important than talent so Nidwanger COULD be a future Pro Bowler being held back by an old man but I doubt it. Rudy is good depth but the Chiefs need a center.
I don’t care how many yards Jones had this year. He got those yards because he got a lot of carries. He averaged 3-7 yards a carry and was terrible at the end of the year. Great guy and everything but I am willing to bet that Jackie Battle could have averaged at least that much if not more. Battle also probably wouldn’t have lost his legs late in the season.
Jones had a couple of nice games, especially early on but he was nothing extraordinary. KC will need to replace him this offseason.
Greenwood was decent on special teams. Not great but decent.
My favorite Irish Chiefs player of all time let me down this year. He spent most of the season trying to be better than Barry Richardson. He shouldn’t have had to try that hard.
Barry Richardson spent most of the season trying to be better than Barry Richardson and he failed. Richardson was ok but I like him better as a backup. I’d also like him to refrain from turning into the Incredible Hulk and trying to kill coaches.
The Chiefs are fortunate to have Asamoah who did alright in limited playing time. If Waters hangs them up this year, he should be able to step in and do alright.
Lost his title of “Best Chiefs Special Team Player That Doesn’t Kick The Ball” to Verran Tucker but he is still decent. He should never get on the field with the offense (though he did have one really nice grab this year) but he is a solid bottom of the roster type guy that Pioli loves.
Shows up. Does a decent job. Catches a pass for 10 yards every few games. If the Chiefs aren’t going to use the full back a lot then I am ok with Mike Cox.
Best Chiefs TE not named Moeaki. Lenny Pope is an underrated blocker and is good for a couple of red zone TD’s every season.
Succop is an average kicker. He is fairly reliable and that is great but he stinks from long range and the Chiefs could use a 50 yard FG from time to time. He is supposed to have a big leg but doesn’t get nearly enough touchbacks.
Weigmann wasn’t spectacular this year but he knows the zone blocking deal and he never snapped the ball over Cassel’s head ala Niswanger. A true Chief and a great player. That being said, it is time for the Chiefs to draft a center.
Battle is a good third running back but I think that is all. I do believe the Chiefs need someone to split carries with Charles but they need someone better than Battle.
McCluster is a bit of a disappointment. He has massive amounts of potential but the Chiefs need to figure out how to use him. If he is going to keep playing receiver, he needs to learn how to use that speed to get open.
He is going to the Pro Bowl on reputation. He wasn’t terrible this year but he wasn’t a Pro Bowler either. He is old and he may be at the end of the line. I just hope he doesn’t hold back Asamoah ala Vrabel.
Great rookie season for the 5th round pick. He split time with McGraw and while he wasn’t spectacular, he has the potential to be a very good player alongside Eric Berry. Lewis is perhaps the player I am most excited about moving forward.
Sorry but it was the same old DJ this year. Mountains of potential and the ability to vanish at a moment’s notice. Too many dropped interceptions this year and too many games where he didn’t make an impact. Still, the Chiefs could do much worse at ILB. See Mays, Corey.
I don’t know that Albert will ever be a lockdown LT but he is passable. I like him where he is at and I don’t think he needs to move to RT. The Chiefs have too many needs to be messing around trying to draft a LT they don’t really need.
One of my favorite Chiefs. McGraw played better than he should have this year but he is getting up there in years. The Chiefs need more depth at safety.
Big Ron Edwards
Big Ron learned how to play nose tackle this year and while he did a fantastic job considering his age, the Chiefs need a dominate NT to run the 3-4 and Ron will never be a dominate NT. Still, heck of a job filling in this year.
Got better as the year went on which is an excellent sign. I am worried about his speed but he is still the 3rd best corner on the roster. Solid rookie season for Arenas. He needs to make more of an impact in the return game and I think he will if the blocking on special teams improves.
Belcher wasn’t spectacular but he is very solid. I like that he got a couple of sacks in the playoff game because it shows he is still improving. Remember, he was an undrafted free agent out of D3. The Chiefs should stick with this kid for t least another year. His arrow is pointing up.
Dorsey is coming along rather nicely. He was very good against the run but he needs to do better at generating pressure.
The best Chiefs’ TE since the other Tony. This kid proved to be more durable than we thought. He is the real deal and his future is very bright. He also had the best catch of the NFL season.
Has the best nickname of any Chiefs player thanks to Big Matt. Great pickup for the Chiefs. They need to get him back.
Did well when he got to play. I really hope I am putting him in the A category next offseason.
KC’s best special teams player, Tucker was a pleasant surprise. Jury still out on if he can be a receiver but at the very worst he is a better Terrance Copper.
No longer the franchise player but still a very good punter. His numbers took a hit kicking to avoid the Chiefs poor coverage team.
Berry has some things to work on but he is going to be an absolute beast. He got burned a bit in the playoff game but the dude was going for it. He was showing up and going for it in a big game. He has a chance to be great.
He can’t get open against good defenses but he also has absolutely no help downfield so it is hard to decide how good/bad he is. Definitely Bowe’s best season though. It will be interesting to see how good he can be with other legit receiving threats around him.
Wow, what a season for Carr. He was excellent and he is still improving. The Chiefs secondary is going to be just sick in the next couple of years.
Lilja should be going to the Pro Bowl with a big middle finger directed at the Colts. Waters goes instead but Lilja was KC’s best offensive lineman.
Great step forward this season for Cassel. I still haven’t seen him perform well against top defenses but he will get multiple chances next season. For now, I am putting his failures against the Raiders and Ravens on the fact that the Chiefs only have one real receiver. I know Cassel can play well when guys are open because he did it all season long. He struggled yesterday because there was simply no one to throw to.
Gafford snapped every ball perfectly all season long. He also recovered a fumble on special teams. A!
The best pass rusher named Gilberry in NFL history. Seriously, Gilberry is a gamer. Great season for Wallace.
Only misses an A+ (and the Pro Bowl) because he kept playing through a hamstring injury. One of the top corners in the NFL.
Top marks gentleman. The Chiefs have the best running back and the best pass rusher in the NFL. That bodes well for the future.
Wow that took forever. Ok Addicts. I am sure you have lots of thoughts on these grades so let me have it.