WR Fred Williams
After fielding one of the worst receiving corps in recent memory in 2014, the Chiefs’ ship may finally have come in at the position. Kansas City’s influx of young talent at wideout was brought to bear over the weekend. One such hopeful competing for the fifth or sixth receiver role is 27-year-old rookie Fred Williams. After going undrafted from St. Cloud State in 2011, Williams spent the next two years in the Arena Football League (with the San Jose SaberCats).
Williams had a big night against the Cardinals on Saturday, hauling in 6 catches for 82 yards and a touchdown. The highlight of his night was a gorgeous 33-yard, over-the-shoulder grab in front of Kansas City’s sideline. He made quite the statement over the weekend and continues to build on the momentum he’s reportedly had in camp. Gaining separation and securing the football was a problem for this team a year ago. Williams’ sure-handed play and ability to find soft spots in coverage could give him a leg up over the rest of the field down the preseason stretch.
ILB Ramik Wilson
Over the past several seasons, the Chiefs have had a revolving door at the inside linebacker spot next to Derrick Johnson. Kansas City’s had a dearth of talent in that role since the Jovan Belcher tragedy, but the team made serious effort at shoring up that spot this offseason. Veteran Josh Mauga was re-signed to a three-year, $8.25 million contract. Dorsey also used a pair of his 10 draft picks on Ramik Wilson (Georgia) and D.J. Alexander (Oregon State). Thus far, the fresh faces have shown promise and appear to be progressing as camp wears on.
Wilson, the team’s fourth-round pick in early May, took full advantage of the opportunity provided by ailing inside linebackers. James-Michael Johnson, D.J. Alexander, and Josh Mauga were all inactive on Saturday, giving Wilson a chance to play for most of the contest. Wilson responded by leading all Chiefs’ defenders with six combined tackles and an interception (that he nearly took back the other way for a touchdown). Zone awareness was a concern of draft experts in the spring, but it appears it’s been an area of focus for Wilson during the offseason.
Next: Another inside linebacker...