Kansas City Chiefs: 6 Takeaways From Week 15’s Drubbing Of The Raiders

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1. Sean Smith Deserves More Credit

Sean Smith is Kansas City’s most improved player bar none.

To give that a touch of perspective, the corner ended 2013 as PFF’s No. 48 overall cornerback (of those who played at least one-fourth of defensive snaps). A year later, he has skyrocketed to No. 5.

A small sample of statistics tells two drastically different tales:

  • 2013: 50 percent of targets caught, 15.4 yards per completion, five touchdowns allowed, two interceptions, nine passes defensed, six penalties
  • 2014: 55.1 percent of targets caught, 11.7 yards per completion, three touchdowns allowed, one interception, eight passes defensed, no penalties

Obviously, in regards to improved players, a number of Smith’s teammates are worthy of recognition as well.

Amid the 1,000-pound cobweb that has been Kansas City’s offensive line, Rodney Hudson has evolved from an average center to a Sunday standout. Meanwhile, Ron Parker and Jaye Howard have progressed from no-names to starters (albeit due to injuries).

But most improved? Smith personified mediocrity last year. And to take it a step further, his mugshot accompanied DUI-themed headlines this past June, paving the way for him taking OTA reps as a second-stringer.

However, since the offseason, Smith has gradually righted a ship that, at one point, looked destined to sink.

And within that short amount of time, the corner has risen from the bottom of the barrel to the top of his class.