Arrows up: Four Chiefs trending

1 of 3

The smoke has cleared from Saturday’s matchup with the Arizona Cardinals and the Kansas City Chiefs saw a number of positives from young players vying for spots on the team. Four players had noteworthy performances in Glendale and have set themselves up well going into the final week of training camp. The NFL preseason is the perfect time for the bottom half of the roster to assert itself and solidify its place on the team. A number of Kansas City’s young hopefuls seized that opportunity over the weekend.

Depth has been in short supply since the new regime took office, but that could soon change at One Arrowhead Drive. First- and second-year players, on both sides of the football, turned in impressive performances on Saturday. Andy Reid’s 25th-ranked offense from a year ago could use some help at the skill positions. Fortunately for them, two recent additions to the squad, at running back and wide receiver, helped the offense create chunk plays against Arizona. Defensively, the Chiefs are looking to get one of the league’s worst run defenses last year back on track, and it was there where they got a strong showing from a pair of linebackers in the middle of their defense.

Let’s take a look at whom I was impressed by over the weekend. I believe these players are trending upward as the team prepares for their preseason home opener with the Seattle Seahawks on Friday. The four of them drew first blood on Saturday night and may have given themselves an edge as the NFL’s first cut-down day approaches in two weeks (September 1). I’ll be keeping a close eye on the quartet throughout the remainder of the preseason. As I stated in last week’s piece:

"“The maturation of young players is a prerequisite for the Chiefs to take another step forward in year three of the new regime.”"

RB Charcandrick West

The former Abilene Christian running back has been the talk of training camp since the Kansas City Chiefs arrived in St. Joseph. In his second season, coaches have been praising West for his versatility and play-making ability. He made good on that praise with an impressive Week 1 preseason performance on Saturday. West touched the ball nine times in the contest, posting 92 yards from scrimmage and proving himself a valuable weapon on the ground and in the passing game.

The second-year man had a run of 34 yards and a 20-yard reception in the game. West has some competition for the third running back spot (from Darrin Reaves and Spencer Ware), but Saturday’s performance put him in the pole position for the job. West’s vision, wiggle, and speed make him a favorite in the RB3 race. If he can continue to produce like he did against Arizona, it’ll be his job to lose.

Next: Another offensive player and a defensive standout...