Sep 7, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs inside linebacker Derrick Johnson (56) is taken off the field after an injury during the first half against the Tennessee Titans at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Welcoming back Johnson and DeVito is going to help. Both players are key pieces on the team’s defense, and their coverage leaves opposing quarterbacks with fewer receiving options. Even though DeVito is more of a run stopper, he still has an impact.
Eric Berry has returned! That story has been huge for the team. Berry was the heart of the secondary and to have him come back, even if it is in a limited way, is huge. He will be sure to come out with a fire and in turn, spread that fire to the entire defense and team.
The signing of former Raider Tyvon Branch could be a huge win for the team and adds depth to the secondary. Defensive back Ron Parker also signed an extension, which was huge for the team as he has been highly productive.
Of course with their first-round selection in the 2015 NFL Draft, the Chiefs selected Marcus Peters who, if he is able to curb his attitude, was labeled at the best corner in the draft. Peters even put on a show during Monday’s training camp by picking off the cautious Alex Smith three times.
The ability to cause turnovers is not out of reach of this team.
In 2013 the Chiefs, under new head coach Andy Reid and defensive coordinator Bob Sutton, turned the defense around. Not only were they able to go from a 2-14 record to 11-5, but they were able to increase the amount of takeaways the defense produced. The team went from -24 in 2012, to +18 in Sutton’s first year, bend eventual Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks.
Not a lot has changed on the defensive side of ball from 2013 to now. They still have a dominate pass rush, and they have an underrated secondary. The Chiefs ranked second in the NFL against the pass, a stat that gets lost with other, not-to-be mentioned, issues. This team has all the pieces together to turn around their awful differential.
The loss of Dontari Poe to a herniated disc is a blow, but the team’s mentality of “next man up” will help fill the hole left by Poe. Cornerback Sean Smith’s suspension was not a shock to the team; the fact that they drafted two corners shows that they were ready for the news.
The Kansas City defense is set to make a comeback in takeaways for 2015. They will have pieces back in place that led to that great 2013 season. Additions of draft players and free agents will only help the team.
Look for the Chiefs to be just as aggressive, if not more so, with Johnson, DeVito and Berry again forcing bad throws and more turnovers this season.
There you have it, Addicts. Do you think the team can turn around from 2014 to go positive in 2015? Let us know in the comments.
Thanks for reading.