There are other players we could highlight here. Eric Murray has only seen a half season’s worth of games as a starter and will continue to develop in Eric Berry’s absence. Dadi Nicolas could come off of the Physically Unable to Play list and show something to the team. DeMarcus Robinson could continue his well-rounded improvements and show himself to be the team’s best wideout other than Tyreek. But for our purposes, to list players who will make an impact in the second half who were absent in the first, we need to highlight Tamba Hali.
Hali got his first few snaps of the 2017 season in the loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, but moving forward, he’s likely going to get more and more as he finds his stamina and game legs. If Dee Ford can return from his back injury, the trio could make a mess of opposing defensive lines for the rest of 2017—something the Chiefs have been missing even during their dominant opening of the season.
Hali took his licks at the end of last season for only having 3.5 sacks in 2016, but the amount of overall pressures were there to show that the chances simply weren’t there in the end. Sacks aren’t the sort of end-all stat that tells the full story, but Hali’s full story was that he was much more effective rushing the quarterback in 2016 than what most fans would believe.
Now that he’s fresh for the stretch run and speaking out on Twitter for a chance to show what he can do, the Chiefs are likely to see a very motivated pass rusher turn in one more great half-season to add to a resume that will already see a place in the team’s Ring of Honor.