A closer look at the Kansas City Chiefs 53-man roster

DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 31: Wide receiver Demarcus Robinson #14 of the Kansas City Chiefs has a third quarter catch against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 31, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 31: Wide receiver Demarcus Robinson #14 of the Kansas City Chiefs has a third quarter catch against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 31, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /

Now that the dust has settled on the bulk of roster moves, let’s take a quick glance at the Chiefs final 53-man roster as it stands coming into Week 1.

Preseason and training camp has come to an end, which mean final roster cuts have been made and the new football season is starting this Thursday. It’s a new year with an all new make-up of a team.

For the Chiefs, they’ve introduced their practice squad, made a final waiver claim for Ike Boettger, and announced a couple last-minute trades for Charvarius Ward and Jordan Lucas. With those moves in the rearview mirror, the Chiefs have a good idea of what the active roster will resemble as they take the field against the L.A. Chargers in Week 1.

Let’s take a look at your Kansas City Chiefs team for 2018:


Patrick Mahomes, Chad Henne

Prepare for more cannon-like throws and the hope that we will get to see Mahomes potential record-breaking 83-yard throw if he gets “a little bit of wind” at his back. Henne is the most stable backup choice the Chiefs had. In the preseason opener, Henne completed 8-of-14 passes for 91 yards including their Chiefs first preseason touchdown. Then he successfully started the preseason Week 4 game by completing 4-of-5 passes for 33 yards and a touchdown. His preseason has been solid.

Running Backs

Kareem Hunt, Spencer Ware, Damien Williams, Darrel Williams, Anthony Sherman

Hunt surely will bring us multiple games of 100-plus rushing yards like he did last year. Ware must have a fire lit in him after being away from the game for a year due to an injury. Damien Williams has shown himself to be a great route runner and Darrel Williams is an under-the-radar rookie  Anthony Sherman easily made the roster as fullback. This might be one of the NFL’s best RB groups.

Wide Receivers 

Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins, Demarcus Robinson, Chris Conley, De’Anthony Thomas, Marcus Kemp

There was no question that Hill and Watkins would make the roster. But this all in all, this is a group with good depth. Robinson has been a standout in training camp and has developed over the two years of his professional career. DAT’s leg is healthy, and he is the toughest player on the roster. Conley is on his fourth season and looking to make a name for himself. Kemp beat out Jehu Chesson, Gehrig Dieter and Jordan Smallwood, so there’s something to say for that.

Tight Ends

Travis Kelce, Alex Ellis

Of course one of the greatest, or arguably the greatest, tight ends in the league made the roster. Expect to see Kelce receive close to 100 catches for over 1,000 yards again. I will bet he breaks his season record of eight touchdowns as well. Ellis will learn from Kelce in no time.

Offensive Line 

Eric Fisher, Mitch Morse, Bryan Witzmann, Jordan Devey, Cam Erving, Kahlil McKenzie , Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, Andrew Wylie, Mitchell Schwartz, Ike Boettger

K.C. decided to go heavy with the offensive line and I’m sure Mahomes isn’t complaining. Fisher and Schwartz will be the tackles, while Erving and Duvernay-Tardif will be the guards. Morse is at center with Devey behind him. From there, Witzmann, Wylie, McKenzie and Boettger will take on various and versatile roles as needed. This makes for a solid line protecting No. 15.

Defensive Line

Chris Jones, Allen Bailey, Derrick Nnadi, Xavier Williams, Jarvis Jenkins, Justin Hamilton

Jones, Bailey and Nnadi are set as the starters. Williams, Jenkins and Hamilton provide valuable depth. Nnadi was the Chiefs 2018 third-round pick out of Florida State where he had a total of 165 tackles and 12 sacks in his four years with the Seminoles. He will be a great addition.

Jones’ stats are improving each year with the Chiefs and Bailey has an ability to set an edge and stop the run. Williams racked up 20 tackles last season and Jenkins is versatile playing as both DT and DE. Hamilton found his way on the roster after his strong preseason performance.

Line Backers

Justin Houston, Dee Ford, Breeland Speaks, Tanoh Kpassagnon, Reggie Ragland, Anthony Hitchens, Ben Niemann, Terrance Smith, Dorian O’ Daniel

The defense gets better with outside linebackers Houston, Ford, Speaks and Kpassagnon along with inside linebackers Ragland, Hitchens, Niemann, Smith and O’Daniel. You can bet these big guys can make the tackle where it counts and won’t end up No. 28 in the league for yards allowed again.

Defensive Backs

Kendall Fuller, Steve Nelson, Orlando Scandrick, Tremon Smith, Charvarius Ward, Eric Berry, Ron Parker, Armani Watts, Eric Murray, Jordan Lucas

The Chiefs have great cornerbacks in Fuller and Nelson. Scandrick, Smith and Ward will also contribute favorably for the team. Scandrick is a nine-year veteran. Smith is quick and will likely be used as a kick and punt returner, as well. And Ward had 74 total tackles and two interceptions his two years at Middle Tennessee State.

After sitting out the whole preseason with a sore heel, hopefully Berry starts strong and fresh come Week 1. Parker is back and knows the Chiefs system. Watts was chosen by the Chiefs in the fourth round of the draft. In four years at Texas A&M, he impressively had a total of 324 tackles and 10 interceptions.  Murray and Lucas could work to improve their performance by working out alongside these fantastic safeties.

Special Teams

Harrison Butker (K), Dustin Colquitt (P), James Winchester (LS)

Expect to see Butker give more flawless performances like he did in preseason finishing 9-of-9 on field goals. Colquitt will punt an average of 45 yards per punt or better, and Winchester will continue to do what he does best for the Chiefs.

To see a full spreadsheet of the official roster; who was kept on practice squad and injured reserve; and players who were cut/waived: Official Kansas City Chiefs Roster