Here are three surprise players who stood out during the Kansas City Chiefs win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Saturday night.
The NFL preseason is a good time for every franchise to showcase the young, new talent trying to find a place on the active roster. Each team is given room for 90 players during the offseason which must soon cut down to 53—a number which brings out tremendous competition for so few spots.
Last night, the Kansas City Chiefs saw an impressive outing from several young players who made an impact on the team’s 38-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. While the whole team could be discussed, there are three players who stood out above the rest.
When Bob Sutton was fired and Steve Spagnuolo took over as the defensive coordinator, it provided a blank slate for some key players. Moving from the 3-4 defensive alignment the Chiefs had invested so much in to a 4-3 base, it was unknown how players like Kpassagnon would make the transition from outside linebacker to defensive end.
Fortunately, Kpassagnon is looking good under Spags’ leadership. The Villanova product found his way into the Bengals’ backfield on several occasions, showing off his knowledge of his new position and his athletic ability. He had a sack of Jeff Driskel and other hurries and he showed why some people are saying he might be developing as John Dorsey originally hoped.
A sixth round draft choice from Utah State, this running back came into a fairly crowded situation. In today’s NFL, the running back is nowhere near as important as it used to be even four or five years ago. The Chiefs have their perceived starter in Damien Williams with a veteran like Carlos Hyde also waiting in the wings.
However, with a recent injury to Damien Williams, his starting status is no longer guaranteed. This opens the door for Thompson to make his name known with an impressive display.
Thompson began building his case last night. While he stands only 5’8, looks are deceiving as Thompson runs like he is the biggest man on the field. He showed no fear in running right through and even jumping over those who got in his way. Thompson also found paydirt with a touchdown reception from Chase Litton.
Keep your eyes open for this man in the coming weeks; the Chiefs may have found yet another hidden gem at running back.
The second-year man from Marshall joined the Chiefs as an undrafted free agent in 2018 and landed on the practice squad for the year. As the 2019 preseason opens, Litton has a chance to make the 53-man roster and made a good start to his case last night against his primary competition, former Vanderbilt quarterback Kyle Shurmur.
Litton’s first couple of throws seemed to be pretty shaky, but he found his stride fairly quickly. Showcasing his arm strength, Litton made some powerful and accurate throws. The Bengals’ defense made a big play and picked off one of his throws down the middle of the field, but Litton trotted back out on the field and moved past the mistake, notching a second touchdown pass to end the night.
Litton finished the game completing 11 of 15 passes for 122 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception. With more performances like that, he may find his way onto an active roster this season.
What players stood out to you? Who else are you watching this preseason, Addicts? We’d love to hear your input in the comments.