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KC Chiefs D Update

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Any word on the rookie Grigsby? Is he worth a developmental squad slot?







He is not looking great. I would say worth a developmental spot on a 16 team, 12-13 man DTS ... but not by a lot. He has been somewhat dissapointing and I am starting to think that Scanlon may win the backup MLB job and they keep 3 MLBs ...


Kawika Mitchell's MLB job is looking surprisingly secure ...

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Meh. Can't win them all I guess. Sounds like FA fodder for next year. Brings me one closer to my cutdown number.

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Posted on Thu, Sep. 08, 2005


No sad sack defense allowed


Chiefs confident line can produce bigger numbers




The Kansas City Star


Maybe it was the early September humidity, and the fact that Eric Hicks was swimming in his uniform for 2 1/2 hours Wednesday afternoon. Hicks is considered the rock of the Chiefs defense. He’s mild mannered. He sat in front of his locker and said the Chiefs expect to get at least 50 sacks this season.


“Anything less than 50 for us would kind of be a travesty,” he said.


That number, by the way, would eclipse the totals from every other team in the NFL last year. Atlanta led the league with 48 sacks. It would also be a small leap for a defense that ranked 31st in the league overall and last in pass defense despite finishing tied for seventh in the league last season with 41 sacks.


“We’ll just remember all the people who doubted us and wrote us off those several years,” Hicks said. “I think they’ll be pleasantly surprised this year.”


Strange things are afoot at Arrowhead Stadium. A few weeks ago, coach Dick Vermeil listed his four best pass rushers in this order: Jared Allen, Jared Allen, Jared Allen and Jared Allen. Allen was the team’s sack leader in 2004. He isn’t even expected to start Sunday in the Chiefs’ season opener with the Jets.


But there is a confidence in the pass rush, a feeling that it can be feared for the first time in about six seasons. Defensive lineman Lional Dalton talks about a one-on-one pass-rush drill the team conducted in training camp, a contest in which the linemen raced to get to a bag in 2.5 seconds.


“Competition,” Dalton said, “makes guys work harder.”


Allen knows that better than anyone. He’s a second-year defensive end who watched Jimmy Wilkerson take his starting spot after the first preseason game, when Allen was beaten on a long run. Much of Allen’s work now comes in nickel packages, when the Chiefs need his pass-rush skills.


The move seems to have motivated Allen, who sacked Rams quarterback Jamie Martin for a 6-yard loss in the preseason finale at St. Louis. The Chiefs had just five sacks in the preseason, but played much of it without starting linebacker Kendrell Bell and defensive end Carlos Hall.


In an offseason full of defensive moves, Hall was the lone addition to the defensive line. Maybe he’s all it will need. Vermeil has raved about the improvements of the linemen who were already here, saying Hicks, Allen and even much-maligned lineman Ryan Sims are better.


“I’ve had opposing offensive line coaches tell me already that in preseason games, that he’s a better player,” Vermeil said of Sims. “He’s really in his third year, and it’s your third year that you start to blossom. I think what Ryan has done is he’s become better defined in his own mind what he wants to be and for the right reasons.”


Hall was brought to Kansas City in April to hunt quarterbacks. He’s studied film of Derrick Thomas, the Chiefs’ all-time sack leader. “He made a lot of things happen,” Hall said.


He knows sacks and hurries are a collective effort. He points to other additions, like safety Sammy Knight and cornerback Patrick Surtain, and says they’ll make the pass rush better. They’ll give him more time to rush the quarterback.


“I don’t think you’ve seen Carlos Hall at his best yet,” Vermeil said. “I think Eric Hicks will be a much better pass rusher this year. I’d like to believe that we’ll see more pass rush. I think with the kind of linebackers we have today, we’ll be more effective.”


They’d better be. Though he hasn’t talked much since the 7-9 season, defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham has made two things clear: that he’ll blitz more and that he can’t stomach the Chiefs finishing near the bottom of the league in defense again.


That, as Hicks says, would be a travesty.


“When you can take a quarterback out of a game and put him on the ground as many times as you can,” Hicks said, “even if you can just hit him, constantly hit him, you’re letting that team know that their protection is breaking down. Then the quarterback starts to lose confidence in his line and it really takes the offense out of the game.


“It’s probably the most demoralizing play in football.”

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KC Chiefs D FF Analysis:




1. Eric Hicks - Week1: 2 tackles & 1 blocked FG; Week 2: 2 tackles, 1 asst, 1 PD

Commentary: KC Continues to rotate DEs, killing the overall productivity of the group. Hicks continues to dissapoint.


2. Jared Allen - Week 1: 3 tackles, 1 sack, 1 FF ; Week 2: 3 tackles.

Commentary: Same as above, the better of the two KC DE options.


My take: I would avoid starting either.




1. Derrick Johnson - Week 1: 8 tackles, 1 asst, 1 FF & 1 sack; Week 2: 7 tackles, 1 asst & 1 FR.

Commentary: 3 down OLB, possible ROY. Start him.


2. Kawika Mitchell - Week 1: 6 tackles, 2 asst, 1 PF & 1 FR; Week 2: 6 tackles & 1 PD.

Commentary: 3 down MLB is secure in his job. Should be owned and starting.


3. Kendrell Bell - Week 1:, Week 2: Doughnut.

Commentary: Huge disappointment. Bench him until further notice.


4. Keyaron Fox - Week 1: 3 tackles, Week 2: Doughnut (early injury).

Commentary: Talented backup will be valuable if Bell or Johnson go down.






1. Patrick Surtain - Week 1: 1 tackles, 1 PD, 1 Int & 1 FR; Week 2: 5 tackles, 1 PD.

Commentary: On the field full time. Fringe starter.


2. Dexter McCleon - Week 1: 6 tackles; Week 2: 4 tackles, 1 asst, 1 PD.

Commentary: Currently on field full time & frequent target. After week 4 may lose most of time to Warfield when he returns from susp.


3. Eric Warfield - Suspended. Legitimate WW pickup starting week 5. Will step into McCleon's role and has more talent.




1. Sammy Knight - Week 1: 7 tackles, 2 asst, 1 sack, 1 PD & 1 FF; Week 2: 2 tackles. 1 asst & 1 PD.

Commentary: Dont let Week 2 scare you off -- top 20 DB.


2. Greg Wesley - Week 1: 4 tackles, 2 asst; Week 2: 6 tackles, 2 asst.

Commentary: Fringe starter.


The other guys on this team are not starting candidates. There is some possibility that DE Carlos Hall could have long-term value.


Possible DTS options include:


1. Boomer Grigsby - Seeing no action. Fringe DTS option.

2. Kris Griffin - Surprising URFA OLB. Coaches compare his speed and ability to Derrick Johnson! Chased Fujita out of town. Has yet to be activiated -- this should change if Fox's injury lingers. Could be worth a flier on your DTS.

Edited by Beaumont

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