#5: Defensive Backs – Chiefs boast one of the greatest safety rooms in NFL history; but cornerbacks leave some to be desired
Among all position groups, defensive backs are the place where, had we split them between safeties and cornerbacks, we would have seen the biggest difference in overall rankings. One could argue that safeties were the second or third best group in team history, while cornerbacks were eighth or ninth in such rankings.
However, we decided to combine them and as such, ended with a position group split down the middle and subsequently, in the very middle of the team’s historical position group rankings.
20 different Chiefs have been named to Pro Bowls and 1st Team All-Pro squads, a total of 21 (AP) and 54 (PB) times. While more cornerbacks (12) have made the teams than safeties (8), there is little doubt that the safety group is amongst the strongest in the history of the NFL.
We’ll start with the corners, who are represented by: Hall of Famer Emmitt Thomas, Marcus Peters, Dale Carter, Bobby Hunt, James Hasty, Duane Wood, Brandon Flowers, Gary Green, Jim Marsalis, Dave Grayson, Albert Lewis, and Dave Webster. With the exception of Thomas, what we have here is a group of very good players. Not a lot of greatness, but some really strong, long-time Chiefs who were outstanding for the team.
The safety position, though, features some all time greats in team history, and in the NFL. Amongst those that make the cut here we’ve included Hall of Famer Johnny Robinson, would-be Hall of Famer Deron Cherry, Kevin Ross, Eric Berry, Gary Barbaro, Tyrann Mathieu, Jerome Woods and Lloyd Burruss. At the peak of their abilities, it could be argued that Robinson, Cherry, Ross, Berry and Mathieu were all amongst the most elite safeties in all of the NFL (at the time). For me, this is simply one of the strongest positions in Chiefs history.
So, when you look at an all-time elite group (safeties) and a very good but comparatively average group (corners), you get a position group of defensive backs who rank in the exact middle of team history.