Of the trio of tight ends here, Mark Vital is the most intriguing of all—or at least the most mysterious.
The Chiefs and other teams have loved the college basketball player turned tight end project in recent years, with K.C. showing how to do it with the likes of Demetrius Harris, Ross Travis, and more. Vital is the latest such project and came onto the roster just about as raw as a player can be with any realistic shot.
Vital was a tenacious defender and rebounder for the Baylor Bears—yes, the national champion Baylor Bears—for the last couple of seasons before earning a chance to turn into a professional football player. The Seattle Seahawks came up with the idea, or at least were the first to present a contract that Vital liked, and he spent the preseason there until he was released shortly into September (after originally making the team’s practice squad).
The Chiefs picked up Vital the following week and he’s been on the practice squad for the duration of the season. His ability to stick around on the roster (even on the P.S.) is a solid achievement in itself for a guy who says he hadn’t played organized football since the eighth grade. Despite the addition of both Bushman and Nakia Griffin-Stewart after his arrival, Vital has not given up his roster spot at an increasingly crowded position. That means something going forward.