Jeremy Maclin, Travis Kelce having huge seasons


In the offseason, the Kansas City Chiefs made a huge free-agent signing when they reeled in wide receiver Jeremy Maclin on a five-year, $55 million deal.

Maclin was expected to come in and revamp a receivers group that did not produce a single touchdown in 2014. So far, so good. Maclin has caught 42 passes for 566 yards and two touchdowns through the first half of the season, despite missing one contest with a concussion.

The Chiefs have not gotten much out of the other wide receivers, with Albert Wilson and Chris Conley checking in at 165 and 160 yards, respectively. Maclin has been able to shoulder the load on the outside, giving the Chiefs a tremendous target on the perimeter for the first time in years.

Meanwhile, third-year tight end Travis Kelce was expected to break out and become a full-fledged star. He has not disappointed. Kelce has snatched 40 passes for 538 yards and three touchdowns, including one on Sunday. Kelce has become one of the most dominant tight ends in the game, perhaps only surpassed by Rob Gronkowski.

Kelce and Maclin gives quarterback Alex Smith one of the best receiving duos in the league to throw at. This is a large part of the reason why Smith is on pace to shatter his career-best for passing yardage. Smith has never thrown for more than 3,400 yards in a season, and if his pace in the first half is duplicated, would fall only 62 yards shy of 4,000.

Plenty has gone wrong for Kansas City this season, but the play of both Maclin and Kelce has been a legitimate bright spot. The Chiefs have both locked up for the future, so this duo should only become more potent over time.