Dicaprio Bootle, cornerback
DiCaprio Bootle has graduated from the practice squad in recent days. In fact, he was the Chiefs’ leading tackler in Week 16’s win over the Steelers.
Bootle declared for the 2021 NFL Draft after making 32 consecutive starts for Nebraska at both cornerback and safety. Unfortunately, he was not drafted after forgoing his college eligibility but that didn’t stop the Chiefs from making him a solid offer as a rookie free agent. Now at this point, it looks like a very promising signing.
Bootle was exceptional all summer and was predicted to potentially upset a veteran for an active roster spot out of camp. Things didn’t play out exactly that way but Bootle was clearly a player to watch from even that first moment when he was placed on the practice squad. In addition to Sunday’s game, the Chiefs had already promoted him or two regular-season games—Week 4 against the Philadelphia Eagles and Week 15 against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Charvarius Ward and Mike Hughes are scheduled for unrestricted free agency. However, Deandre Baker will be a restricted free agent. It’s also interesting that Tyrann Mathieu, Armani Watts, and Dan Sorensen are all slated to hit free agency as well since it points to an overwhelming amount of turnover in the Chiefs secondary. Given Bootle’s versatility coming into the league, the Chiefs could lean on him to fill in there as well.
Either way, watch for Bootle to gain more playing time at the tail end of this year and potentially press for very real snaps in 2022 given how close he came the year prior.