One Man’s Look At The Chiefs Roster

We always enjoy hearing from our readers, largely because you guys never cease to amaze me with the depth of your knowledge and use of your craniums.

The following arrived in the e-mail late this past week and I found the take interesting, so I decided to share it with everyone. Enjoy


Bob: take a seat – this may be a longer read. I worked through the current Chiefs line-up and tried to identify the areas of biggest need. Here’s what I came up with.

OT: I’m actually fine with what the Chiefs have here. Albert and Richardson get the job done, sack stats are down compared to last year, and I think a rate of 1 sack per 20 pass attempts is acceptable. Richardson is on a RFA contract; however, I think he has earned a long term extension by now. Gaither’s waiting in the wings, I think he still isn’t 100% recovered from injury. He’s on a 1-year contract, so we’ll have to wait and see if he’ll be around in 2012. Mims is a project. I won’t count him in for 2012. Bottom line: no action required if the current crew stays put.

OG/C: Let’s face it – Wiegmann is still playing good football but he’s reached the end of the line. With Hudson being bred behind him a smooth handover may be possible. Lilja’s getting the job done; however, some more push might be desirable. Asamoah is coming along nicely. So, if Hudson takes over at C, the question is: who’s going to provide depth? Not sure Harris will ever see the active roster. Bottom line: This position is an area to keep an eye on – even though I don’t see it as an area of urgent need. Adding a decent FA to provide depth may get the job done.

RB: I assume Charles will be back at 100% next year. Battle is a nice surprise right now; nevertheless, I think it’s too early to come to a final conclusion. Over the last two games he pretty much looked like a younger and more explosive version of Thomas Jones, getting 3-4 yards at minimum on runs inside the tackles. I’m thoroughly impressed by his ability to get another yard or two after contact. McCluster I consider as a gadget player. In my opinion he has way too many runs for negative yardage to consider him a full time RB. McClain isn’t what I had hoped for. With two unknowns in Bannon and Draughn on the PS the Chiefs are pretty deep at the position. Bottom line: If Battle continues to play at the current level I don’t see an urgent need to add someone here. Whether more depth is needed once Jones drops out at the end of 2011 will depend on Bannon/Draughn.

WR: Triple-B (Bowe, Breaston, and Baldwin) looks great. Add Moeaki and Charles as additional receiving threats and the Chiefs should be able to overwhelm most secondaries immediately. The crucial question will be whether they will be able to lock up Bowe long term. I don’t think he’ll leave in 2012 – Franchise Tag is looming – but after then? Urban probably is on his way out – anything behind the top 3 WR can be picked up from the FA scrap heap (well, Copper will be under contract anyway). Bottom line: No need to do anything but lock up Bowe.

TE: I assume Moeaki will be back at 100% next year. However, he’s got a history of injuries. Pope and O’Connell are hmmmppphhh … although the latter seems to develop some. I’d love me some Jason Dunn added to the mix, a bruising snowplow to pave the way outside the Tackles. Given Haley’s affinity to stockpile TE I’m pretty sure we’ll see some addition here. Bottom line: The #1 TE is on the roster. A dedicated blocker (may be a veteran) should be added. O’Connell is decent as #3; however, improvement is definitely possible.

QB: Cassel is under contract through 2014 but is getting more and more expensive (2012: $5.25 million, 2013: $7.5 million, and 2014: $9 million). What worries me most about him is his lack of consistency. He can be incredible both ways within a single game – the head scratcher in the OAK game that ended as his 2nd INT of the day being a prime example. I’d consider him a middle of the pack QB right now with not much upside left. Palko and Stanzi are unknowns, but as of now definitely are not starting quality QBs. I have a hard time to believe the Chiefs will draft a QB in 2012 and throw him to the wolves. There’s just no need to do so with Cassel around. Nevertheless, 2012 seems to have a pretty deep class of decent QB. It may be a good time to pick up a future starter and groom him for a year or two just as Green Bay did with Aaron Rodgers. As for whom to pick? I have no clue. But I expect some of the highly touted guys to drop to the second round. Ryan Tannehill could be a guy I like there. Bottom line: The Chiefs don’t have the urgent need to target a QB high. But if opportunity presents itself they should grab it.

NT: Kelly Gregg was a nice find as a stop gap. But he’s no more than that and his time is up. Amon Gordon may be a contributor at the position – but a starter? Powe and Toribio didn’t show anything yet, so I have a hard time to believe they will be a starter next season. Thus I see a gaping hole at the position. And furthermore I’m a firm believer that the DL needs continuity. So no stop gaps anymore! Bottom line: A position to really put the focus on. I don’t care if the Chiefs find a solution in FA, in a trade or with a draft pick – but please find a solution that lasts longer than a year or two!

DE: Jackson seems to have come along quite a bit right now. Dorsey continues to get the job done though it’s not natural to him. Bailey provides solid depth but needs to develop some more to be considered a starter. Gilberry may be the disappointment at the position so far. Bair is an unknown factor. However, I wonder whether the Chiefs will be ready to pay Dorsey for a big second contract after 2013. I could imagine them trading him away after the season given the depth they have. Bottom line: This position is solid at least. All but Gilberry are under contract through 2013 at least. No urgent need to do something here – if the Chiefs are ready to keep (and pay) Dorsey long term. If they don’t have him in their plans they should put him on the block after the season and look for a replacement in the 2012 draft.

OLB: Hali is set. Houston seems to develop nicely. Studebaker: a major disappointment so far this year in my opinion. Sheffield: didn’t see too much of him so far. Miller: a big unknown. The Chiefs have a nice core of young guys here. They are set for years to come at starters. However, experience is just starting to build with Hali being the senior. Studebaker may be on his way out – so depending on what the Chiefs see in Miller depth may be considered an issue. Bottom line: A backup and key ST guy should be considered. Such a guy should be available in the FA pool – I think some extra experience in addition to Hali would not be too bad.

ILB: I’m not sure what to make out of Belcher. Sometimes he looks like a Pro-Bowler, sometime badly overmatched. I think consistency is an issue here that should be addressed. D.J. developed incredibly over the past two years. Behind those two: Williams? I don’t like him anymore. Undisciplined on punts, not contributing much at the position. Siler: no clue. Greenwood is strictly a ST guy and should play the position only in an emergency. Severe depth issues here which may force the Chiefs to keep Belcher in as a starter. Probably the second most urgent need on defense (after NT). Bottom line: The Chiefs should bring in AT LEAST one guy able to challenge Belcher. No matter who wins – the loser should be a significant upgrade in depth at the position.

S: I’ll address the whole bunch as one as I don’t think the Chiefs’ safety play can be considered along the lines of conventional FS/SS setups. Berry is set – but behind him? I’m not a big fan of Lewis this year. Way too inconsistent, beat multiple times on deep balls. Maybe it’s the void Berry’s absence created. Whatever. Washington: still raw. Will he ever be able to transfer his physical gifts into skilled playmaking? McGraw and Piscitelli: They’re at the end of the line. Getting too slow to play deep. I actually like McGraw playing close to the line. Bottom line: The number three area to address on the D. I think the situation at FS is comparable to that at ILB. Bring in a potential starter/Lewis replacement and see who wins the job with the loser being an upgrade at backup.

CB: Flowers is set, keeping Carr around should be a top priority for the Chiefs. But will they be able to? I have no clue. If I was Carr I’d test the open market. Arenas and Daniels provide pretty good depth; Brown still has to prove what he’s worth. Bottom line: The Chiefs will be fine here if they are able to keep Carr. If not they’ll have to find a starting CB. Neither Arenas nor Daniels should start on a permanent basis.

ST: Colquitt and Gafford are signed through 2012, and I’m fine with both of them. Succop recovered from his bad performance early in the season. He’ll be a RFA. Bottom line: If Succop continues to kick as he did over the past three games the Chiefs should be fine here. But I’d keep a close look at him throughout the season.

As developed above here’s my positional priority list for improvement – as an outline for next year’s off-season (based on a snapshot week 7):

  • 1 – NT
  • 2 – CB (only if Carr walks)
  • 3 – ILB
  • 4 – S
  • 5 – WR (only if Bowe walks)
  • 6 – OG/C
  • 7 – RB
  • 8 – OT
  • 9 – OLB
  • 10 – DE
  • 11 – CB (if Carr stays)
  • 12 – TE (after the Becht signing)
  • 13 – WR (if Bowe stays)

Would like to hear your opinion.

Regards, Dirk Scholl.

15 Responses to “One Man’s Look At The Chiefs Roster”

  • October 29, 2011  - Niblick says:

    I would move OG/C to 2 if Carr stays, 3 if he goes. I’m just not sure if Lilja is a fit. I know you can find guards later, but I think it’s more of a need. Don’t forget we have Siler coming back. I think he was targeted at Belcher’s ILB spot. This was an excellent analysis by Dick. I agree with all the rest of his needs.

  • October 29, 2011  - Chuck says:

    This is an EXTREMELY EXCELLENT POST. My only 2 comments would be this: Tyler Palko has been in the league for 4 years now and is not a good backup. Think of it this way. You make the playoffs and win the first one. In the second game Cassel gets hurt and you have to go with Palko??? NOT. The other item is: Tyson Jackson has not shown me anything this year that would lead me to believe he is worthy of a first round pick and 10 Million a year. I still think he’s a bust. Tell me a game in the first 6 where he was a dominating force??? NOT.

  • October 29, 2011  - Tim says:

    Nice analysis for the most part. I would disagree slightly with some of the positions. For example, I believe Weigman & Lilja have to be replaced next year AND you have to acquire others for depth…no O-line, no Ws. Thomas Jones MUST be replaced. I agree Battle has been pleasantly surprising, but he is a bit limited. Need a younger version of a Jones type back. The safety position definitely needs personnel. There is also a need for another slot corner. Arenas is too much of a matchup deficiency on TEs. I’m not saying you get rid of him…just put him farther down the pecking order in CBs. We need another TE badly. Moeaki may be number one, but if he’s not reliable, were hurting. We could’ve EASILY picked up a quality TE this offseason & didn’t. I agree with the take on Dorsey wholeheartedly. Not opposed to trading him. I also strongly agree w/ the LB take & QB take.

  • October 29, 2011  - Enrique says:

    Great post Dirk. Although I’d put DE higher on this list (top 4) in case Gilberry doesn’t elevate his game in the remainder of the season. Somebody from the D-line needs to bring some kind of pass-rushing heat to the opponents’ backfields to take some pressure from Tamba.

  • October 29, 2011  - Chris says:

    Why is it people keep calling Tyson a bust. The kid has been doing what he is supposed to do with eating up double teams. Gregg has started to come on as of late and with him and Tyson eating blockers our linebackers are able to make the plays. I’d definitely move guard or center up to two if Carr is resigned. Lilja is not working out and has been a disappointment at this point. He’s in his last year anyway. my wish is to lock up Bowe and Carr in season and then all you have left is a couple spots on the OL and a NT and an SILB.

  • October 29, 2011  - James says:

    If they trade Dorsey and keep Jackson, somebody needs fired. How do you know what you have in Powe if you never activate him and get him in a game? OG, RB and Safeties are a priority. They may have given the wrong CB the big extension and Bowe is going to want Fitzgerald money. Going to be an interesting finish to the season and the off season.

  • October 29, 2011  - Blake says:

    Good post but I would have a different priority list. One comment, I like Lewis I think he is a good S, I think he is the most underrated player on our defense. You don’t see him a lot which is actually a good thing since he isn’t getting beat deep.

    1. NT-upgrade over Gragg
    2. ILB-Upgrade over Belcher
    3. TE-good number 2 opposite Moeaki
    4. C/G-upgrade over Lilja? depth
    5. RB (Jones is done, Battle is okay-I don’t agree with most fans that he is a number two back behind Charles, he can get a few carries here and there but I want a good power back that is an upgrade over Battle)
    6. OT-depth
    7. CB-depth
    8. DE-depth
    9. OLB-depth
    10. WR-depth

  • October 29, 2011  - slingblade says:

    Bob. Be sure to get Dirk’s tax id number before you send him his check.

  • October 29, 2011  - aPauled says:

    I think Blake hit the priority list…gotta address the middle of the D…although I would insert QB pretty high on the list. Cassel needs someone behind him to push/replace him…all up to Matt on how that works out.

  • October 29, 2011  - napahank says:

    My question is this: Can Hunt use some of that $30M under the cap THIS year to extend contracts for Bowe and Carr and even Big Barry? We need to have a cap cushion next year to get that one or two KEY free agent(s) we may need for our post season run next year.

  • October 29, 2011  - Bobber says:

    Good thoughts by everyone. My only departure would be on NT. I think Powe showed quite a bit of potential during pre season, and with this year and an off season under his belt, he could be the premanent fixture at that position we’re looking for. I agree with Tim’s comments that RB, inside OL, and TE should be considered higher needs than Dirk suggests. We need another TE for depth and to create a truly scary receiver group. Look at the versatility and matchup advantages that 2 TEs add to New England’s offense. We need depth or upgrades in lots of places.

  • October 29, 2011  - Chris says:

    I have a feeling both Bowe and Carr will be getting extensions in season a la Johnson and Charles.

  • October 30, 2011  - el cid says:

    Well thought out post but I sort of think the team should always be on the lookout for RB talent, every year, as opposed to the constant search of the rubish pile for TEs.

    Number one need is everywhere on the DL, both NT and DE. Not so sure about Hudson at C, looks more like a G,

    After commenting negatively on TE, we need one. Moeaki injury history take him out of the running as a #1. Would be nice if they could find one that could block and catch.

    Also the Chiefs need to consider looking at K. They come and go quickly.

    Add to the DL and go for depth.

  • October 30, 2011  - rufus says:

    Belcher is a good ILB. He’s very consistent, is a steady improving player.

    The Chiefs need another big DE to replace Dorsey.

    Jamaal is not going to be 100 % next year and he may never be the elusive player he was. The Chiefs will draft a RB.

    The Chiefs have DB’s. They really have some guys there.

    The Chiefs still need linemen on both offense and defense.

  • October 31, 2011  - Niblick says:

    I think any extensions would be on the cap for next year and beyond. This is where I disagree with many who say Clark won’t spend money. We have already spent over 121MM this year and several million more in future years. Our cap number for 2011 is only about 90MM. That money will not show up in the cap until 2012 and 2013. The league as a whole must spend to 99% of the cap, even it it doesn’t show up this year. I would guess that we will be in the top ten or so incap dollars in 2012 and 2013. I could be wrong but that spending has to show up sometime.

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