Chiefs vs. Cardinals: Five important angles to watch for

There are a lot of moving parts at this point in the offseason. Injuries and performances play a big role in who we will see suit up against the Detroit Lions on September 7th. Let's take a look at what to watch for during this Saturday's game against the Cardinals.

Kansas City Chiefs Offseason Workout
Kansas City Chiefs Offseason Workout / Kyle Rivas/GettyImages
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4. Will the young receivers and Richie James get to play with Mahomes?

The Chiefs chose to stand mostly pat and remain conservative at the wide receiver position this offseason. They signed former New York Giant Richie James and drafted SMU’s Rashee Rice in the second round. Justyn Ross is mounting a comeback from a series of injuries after being brought in as an undrafted free agent in 2022. 

All three of those pass-catchers stood out in their own way last Sunday against the Saints and it would behoove the Chiefs to let them run with Mahomes this week to see what they have in those players in live-game action. 

Last week, Reid played Skyy Moore, Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Justin Watson with Mahomes. At the very least, Rice, James and Ross all have higher ceilings than Watson, so it would be nice to see them get routes and their timing down with the first team. They also need to go up against the better competition to evaluate them properly. 

5. Which second-team players will get a run with the first-team special teams?

The best storyline from last week was third-string wide receiver Nikko Remigio out of Fresno State. He racked up 71 yards on four catches after flashing in training camp this last month. Unfortunately, he went down with a shoulder injury in practice this week. Had that not happened, like Rice, James, and Ross, it would have been nice to see if Remigio get some run with the second-team offense. 

One thing we knew about Remigio is he was a prolific kick returner in college. Had he remained healthy, and with the way he performed last week, it would have been really interesting to see if he got any run with the first team on special teams. 

Kahlef Hailasse also flashed with an interception to go along with four tackles. With Sneed still sidelined, second-year defensive back Nazeeh Johnson out for the year and Nic Jones, a 2023 seventh-round cornerback, fracturing a couple of fingers last week, the Chiefs need someone to step up in this position group. 

Hailasse fits that bill with his six-foot-one, 194-pound frame and playmaking ability. If you see him out there with the first-team special teams unit, it would appear he has an inside track to making the 53-man roster. 

Some others to look out for that would fit that same category would be tight end Matt Bushman, cornerback Ekow Boye-Doe and the aforementioned Ross. All of these players are fighting for the last spots of their perspective position groups and may need to offer strong special teams value to earn a spot on the roster.