Could Tim Ward Be The Pass Rush Help We’ve Been Looking For?
For months I’ve been complaining that the Chiefs lack of good edge rushers could hold them back this season. Yes, I was tempted by what Chris Jones could do on the outside, but if he was going to kick inside on clear passing downs (which he did on Saturday) then the team still needed more help on the outside. Frank Clark has underperformed in K.C. and their only draft help at the position this year, Joshua Kaindoh, is more of a long term project.
So when the Chiefs announced Taco Charlton wasn’t playing Saturday and Alex Okafor has already had some hamstring issues, I figured the outside pass rush would be pretty unspectacular after Chris Jones was done for the day. Tim Ward proved me wrong.
Ward played really well, ending up with two sacks on the day. The last we saw of Ward he was playing in the season finale against the Los Angeles Chargers when K.C. was resting their stars. He got a sack that day as well, going against their starters.
I’m not ready to jump Tim Ward over guys like Taco Charlton and Alex Okafor just yet, but similar to what I said about Daurice Fountain, it’s not like the path to playing time is all that imposing for Ward. The Chiefs have no long-term investment in Charlton and Okafor, and there’s a good chance that Clark may be a cap casualty after the season if he doesn’t play better this year. So if Ward can emerge as even just an average NFL pass rusher it could cement him as part of the regular rotation.
The trio of Ward, Omari Cobb, and Daurice Fountain officially have my attention now. I will be keeping a close eye on all three next week to see if they can replicate their success and potentially earn roles on this team. So what do you think Chiefs fans? Do you agree with my six biggest surprises of this first preseason game? Is there anyone else that surprised you that you think I’m overlooking? I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments below.