* Marcus Peters rookie season was not a fluke. I don’t know why any quarterback would ever throw at him. Seriously, why take the risk? ESPECIALLY if there are question marks across from him, which leads me to…..
* Man, I was really hoping to see Steven Nelson looking better than he did last preseason, but I was disappointed. My take on him last year is that he is strong enough to jam up wideouts at the line but he lacks the quickness to stick to them in coverage and is usually a step too late getting there when he is playing in off coverage. That’s exactly what I saw again on Saturday. He doesn’t get beat badly, but he’s just a step too late and against a good quarterback that’s all they need. I REALLY hope that Phillip Gaines is healthy this year because I think KC is going to need him starting on the outside opposite Peters. I don’t think Nelson is the guy for that job. In fact, I thought Marcus Cooper looked much better on the outside than Nelson did and this is coming from a guy that thought Cooper’s chances of making the team as a corner this season were slim to none.
* Of the three rookies that the Chiefs drafted in the secondary I thought D.J. White was the clear winner on Saturday. He was consistently sticking to his man in coverage and showed some ability to tackle in the open field. KeiVarae Russell was ok, he looked like a rookie in coverage. I still have hopes for him, but I think he’ll need some time to learn the technique needed to go with his athletic abilities. If you had asked me after the game how much playing time Eric Murray got I would have said it was a lot less than the other two rookies, so I was surprised to see that wasn’t the case when looking at snap counts for the game. Murray was my favorite of the three corners drafted and I think the move to safety could work, but I simply didn’t notice him out there much on Saturday. The good news is that he wasn’t making mistakes that caught my eye but he wasn’t making big plays either. I’m really curious to watch these three rookies more as the preseason progresses. If White continues to shine I wouldn’t mind him seeing some first team reps in the slot, especially if Nelson continues to struggle.
* The Chiefs defensive line is just flat out nasty. Dontari Poe…..freak of nature. Jaye Howard…..a rising star. Allen Bailey…..a physical force. What’s really scary is that it doesn’t stop there. Chris Jones is physically talented enough to contribute from day one both against the run and the pass. He was consistently beating linemen and his instincts on the play where he blew up that screen pass were fantastic. This guy looks like a steal. Nick Williams is going to make this team and looks like he could fill Mike Devito’s role as a run stopper (but with more athletic upside). Then there’s David King who also looks like he should make the team as he really dominated Seattle’s back up linemen. Will KC be able to keep six defensive linemen on the 53 man roster? I didn’t even mention Rakim Nunez-Roches who has some pass rush upside. This position and running back are by far the most deep on the team.
* Inside linebacker is another position (like wide receiver) where I’m going to need to see more before I make a prediction on how things shake out. Could KC keep five in Derrick Johnson, Josh Mauga, Ramik Wilson, Justin March, and DJ Alexander? I feel like Johnson, Wilson, and March are locks to make the team. Mauga could either start or get cut all together if the team likes one of the young guys better. I really think they want to keep Alexander’s speed and special teams play on the team but if they want to keep Mauga he could lose out in the numbers game. I’ll keep a close eye on these guys again in the next game.
* I’m a little worried about the pass rush from our outside linebackers. Dee Ford was pretty “meh” out there in this game and Frank Zombo is just a veteran body to hold down the position. I get that they trust Zombo but I’d much rather give Dezman Moses some first team reps and see what he can do against starting lines while Justin Houston and Tamba Hali are out. I thought Moses was the best outside linebacker they had on Saturday. He may not be able to produce against the top tackles, but give the guy a shot. Do you really need to see more from Zombo at this point? Both Jonathan Massaquoi and Andy Mulumba showed some promise too. I’ll watch them in coming weeks as well. Maybe the most pleasantly surprising outside linebacker was rookie Dadi Nicolas. He looked like a great situational pass rusher against inferior offensive tackles. Just keep in mind that Nicolas is no where near ready to hold down the edge against starting tackles. He simply doesn’t have the strength, but there could be a spot for him as a pass rush specialist if he continues to show up like he did against Seattle.
I think that pretty much does it for my notes on this first preseason game. What do you think Addicts? Were you happy with this first game? Do you agree with my observations or did you see things differently? Were there any players that stuck out to you (good or bad) that I didn’t mention? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
As always, thanks for reading and GO CHIEFS!!!!!!!!