Film warning: Chiefs still lack Mike ILB

Dec 13, 2015; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs inside linebacker Derrick Johnson (56) celebrates with teammates after intercepting the ball during the first half against the San Diego Chargers at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 13, 2015; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs inside linebacker Derrick Johnson (56) celebrates with teammates after intercepting the ball during the first half against the San Diego Chargers at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports /
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Aug 10, 2016; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Justin March-Lillard (59) runs a blocking drill at Kansas City Chiefs training camp presented by Mosaic Life Care at Missouri Western State University. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 10, 2016; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Justin March-Lillard (59) runs a blocking drill at Kansas City Chiefs training camp presented by Mosaic Life Care at Missouri Western State University. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports /

Positives

Both March and Wilson look to be solid in filling in Derrick Johnson’s role. Both had some athletic plays when they attacked. Against L.A. Wilson was able to apply some pressure and get behind the line of scrimmage. D.J. Alexander has been a standout special teams player, but flashed some take on skills versus the Rams, showing the most run-stopping potential (below with black neck roll).

That’s good, but not enough. Despite being the fastest linebacker according to Derrick Johnson, Alexander’s game remains too one-dimensional to be an option to start at ILB. If he can continue to progress, that could change in the future.

Don’t Rule it out

Its possible that the Chiefs’ staff prefers athletic linebackers and is willing to play defense without a run stopping ILB. I consider that a huge mistake and one that could bite them in 2016. Defending the run will likely be more important this season than any year since the Reid/Dorsey regime took over. That could make picking up an experienced linebacker a priority as final roster cuts come down on September 3rd.

Back during his time in Kansas City, Gunther Cunningham said “take away the run and you will take away their will”. This team needs to find a way to get that done.

What do you think, Addicts?