With Week 8 upon us and the Chiefs sitting at an abysmal 3-4, it’s safe for all fans to wonder, how did we get here? Of course, we can point to all sorts of things in terms of the scheme, fit, unfortunate circumstances, etc.
However, the biggest factor seems to be players that have been heavily relied on early have disappeared or are off the team altogether. There have been plenty of players this season that have not panned out for Kansas City that was given a large amount of responsibility heading into this 2021 season.
Let’s take a look at players we were wrong about—players who we either over-hyped, overestimated, or gave too much credit entering this Chiefs season.
#1 Kyle Long
The 7-year veteran was coaxed out of retirement by the Chiefs to help shore up an offensive line that was abysmal in the Super Bowl last year. Kyle Long was the starting right guard from May to June until he injured his knee during OTAs on June 10th, and was then placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list before the season started.
Kyle Long was severely overhyped in the amount of consistency he was going to provide the Chiefs o-line. Of course, should he have come back healthy, he would have potentially been a steal to come in and bridge the gap for this offensive unit. However, it looks like the year off was too much for him as the injury in OTAs derailed his year early. Not to dog on Kyle Long, but offensive lineman playing well as they enter their mid 30’s doesn’t happen often, especially when you take a year off.
While signing a former Pro Bowler can’t be bad even if they only provide veteran experience for younger players, however, Long hasn’t even been able to challenge for a spot on the depth chart since the summer.
With nearly a 600-yard season to start his career, it looked as though Callaway just needed a change of scenery as well as the consistency that Kansas City provides. Callaway was looked at as a wide receiver that could replace Sammy Watkins and potentially take the jump and become a reliable #2 option on the outside for Patrick Mahomes. With a decent rookie campaign showing him gel with Baker Mayfield, off-the-field issues hampered his ability to stay on the field. Unfortunately, once allowed to return to the field, Callaway was injured during the offseason, placed on IR, and reached an injury settlement with Kansas City
It seems as though we missed the mark and may have oversold a fringe wideout who hasn’t been able to stay on a roster since his rookie year. Callaway was looked at as another gadget player that could elevate this offense, but yet again another flier didn’t pan out.