Ron Parker: Savior Of Football Games

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Let us make this clear right now: If Ron Parker buys a single drink or meal about town this week, we have failed him as fans.

Kansas City should be 5-4 right now but Ron Parker absolutely refused to allow that to happen. With an argued exception of Jamaal Charles and Alex Smith, no other player impacted Sunday’s win the way Parker did with his brilliant play on defense. Simply put, Parker turned in one of the most impressive performances by a Chiefs secondary player in a long time.

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It depends on which stat service you want to use, but Parker had at least two passes defended, a forced fumble, and 21 yards allowed on 10 targets. He did not allow a single YAC yard all game even though he spent most of the game covering the dynamic rookie wide receiver Sammy Watkins. Parker was simply special.

Two sequences really stand out for Parker, the first being the strip of Bryce Brown. The Bills took the opening possession of the second half and decided they were going to ram it down the Chiefs’ throats. Buffalo took the ball at their own 24 and powered their way down the field to the Chiefs’ 17 in 10 plays, a drive reminiscent of the ones the Chiefs have used to put their opponents away.

Brown was given the ball with the opportunity for a kill shot. On the 11th play Kyle Orton handed the ball off the Brown and he used his speed and fresh legs to burst through a wide open hole that led directly to the end zone. But Brown, whose career issue has always been fumbling, left the ball hanging lose as he came within steps on the end zone. Parker took advantage.

That’s all effort from Parker, who could have easily given up on the play.

Maybe his most impressive effort came in Buffalo’s last meaningful drive of the game. After a rare, poor punt by Dustin Colquitt, the Bills had the ball on the Chiefs’ 25. Only 25 yards were needed to regain the lead and the Chiefs defense was clearly tired.

Parker did not care, apparently.

Buffalo picked up a first down at the Chiefs’ 15 and then decided throw the ball four times towards the end zone. Three of those passes were targeted at Ron Parker. Here’s how all of that turned out.

1st and 10: Orton pass to Watkins at the goal line, nearly intercepted by Parker.

2nd and 10: Orton pass incomplete to Chris Hogan in the end zone, defended by Parker.

3rd and 10: Orton pass incomplete to Hogan over the middle. (Defended by what seemed like no one at the time.)

4th and 10: Orton pass incomplete to Watkins inside the five yard line, nearly intercepted by Ron Parker.

Game. Set. Match.

Keep in mind the Chiefs are the fourth team Parker has been with in four NFL seasons. He’s been cut by the Seattle Seahawks (twice), Oakland Raiders, and Carolina Panthers. Last season was the first time he was ever active for more than five games in a season, and eight of his nine career starts have come this season. (All nine career starts are with the Chiefs.)

Parker’s success is a testament to his work ethic, John Dorsey’s ability to identify value, and Andy Reid’s coaching staff to develop players. Those three things working in unison won the Chiefs a football game yesterday, and damn if that win wasn’t massive towards the Chiefs chances of making the postseason.

Drinks on us, Ron. You deserve it.