January 25, 2014; Honolulu, HI, USA; Kansas City Chiefs safety Eric Berry (29) poses with fans during the 2014 Pro Bowl Ohana Day at Aloha Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Now, I am not a scout. I cannot claim to be any kind of expert on Branch’s career, and I have not taken the time to break down tape from previous seasons. But with that being said, I know that if you wanted to look the tape from the past two years, it would not take very long. According to profootballrefence.com, Branch has only played in five games combined in the 2013 and 2014 seasons.
That is not to say that Branch cannot be a serviceable player today. But it does indicate that the Raiders stopped seeing value in him. And a serviceable player who lost value with the Raiders is not really much a replacement for a three time Pro Bowler.
Even without Berry for much of last season, the Chiefs passing defense was still second in the league. However, much of that may be due to the ferocious and constant presence of the K.C. pass rush. Now that Justin Houston is officially resigned, imagine how much more difficult it would be to throw against the Chiefs with a healthy Berry in the secondary.
So what would Berry’s return mean for the Chiefs? If you are Tyvon Branch, it would mean that you’ll likely not see the field very often for a third consecutive year. And if you are Husain Abdullah, it means that having your role greatly reduced becomes almost certain. But for the team as a whole, it would mean an instant improvement to the secondary, and depth at a position that certainly seems like it could use some.
Chiefs fans already had one dream come true with the signing of Houston this week. Let’s hope that we can make it two with the return of No. 29 this season.
Be Bold. Be Brave. Be Berry.