Chiefs news for 10 May 2019
Some things are bigger than football. I saw this in the Thirsty Thursday thread (H/T to TNCHIEFS) and thought it was important to share:
“The 6 hr surgery turned to 8, then 10, then 12 hrs & he was constantly updating Matthew throughout. When he opened me up, he saw an ‘anomalous’ artery that is normally not there. In his 2000 cases, he had seen it ONE other time. BUT bc it was so rare, he & his team wrote a paper on it for other surgeons,” she wrote.
She also thanked him [Dr. B. Gregory Thompson] for his patience, especially when it came to her hearing.
“He took his time & was patient. There was a moment when they thought I might have lost my hearing completely. He made everyone & everything stop, they all sat, & waited for some time.. the audio wave returned. His patience saved my hearing, as well as my face. You read right, he PRESERVED MY HEARING!” Stafford wrote.
In an interview this week with Chiefs.com, Thompson was asked about star quarterback Pat Mahomes and what it would be like to catch passes from the third-year player.
“First, it’s a winning organization,” he said. “You saw last year, they could have been in the Super Bowl, and with a guy like Pat that can really make plays — in the pocket, out of the pocket, he’s making no-look passes, he’s doing everything — he’d just be an amazing guy to play with, along with the rest of the cast around him.”
“My favorite player came here,” Johnson said to Kissel. “And he actually went to Texas. That’s Derrick Johnson. So you know, once I first got the call that the Chiefs were even interested in me, it was like somewhere I could see myself playing. I watched Derrick Johnson play here.”
Derrick Johnson recently signed a one-day contract and retired with the Chiefs. However, that wasn’t the first time that Gary had interacted with Derrick. They’ve been in contact since Gary’s days at Texas, which happens to also be Derrick’s alma mater.
In 2019, FPI loves the Chiefs. Though Kansas City was knocked out by the New England Patriots in the AFC title game last season, FPI thought the Chiefs remained the best team in football in 2018 even after the Super Bowl. Mix in the fact that Vegas concurs with Kansas City’s overall strength and that its quarterback has recorded only brilliance on the stat sheet, and FPI forecasts 10.3 wins, a 65 percent chance to win the AFC West and an 80 percent chance to reach the playoffs. And there’s the aforementioned 16 percent shot at winning it all, which matches the chance last season’s favorite — the eventual Super Bowl-winning Patriots — had last preseason.
But the margin is slim. Right on the Chiefs’ heels are the New Orleans Saints, Patriots and Los Angeles Rams — the other participants in last season’s conference championship games — with 15, 12 and 12 percent chances, respectively, to hoist the Lombardi trophy before a large drop-off to the rest of the field. In fact, the Patriots have a slightly better win total projection and higher chances to win their division and reach the playoffs than the Chiefs, thanks to a much easier schedule.
But overall, FPI is pretty clear: It’s last season’s final four, then everyone else. And that is reflected not only in each team’s individual chance to win the Super Bowl, but also in the most likely Super Bowl combinations.
3. Cardinals trade Patrick Peterson to the Chiefs
Chiefs get: Patrick Peterson
Cardinals get: 2020 first-round pick
Patrick Peterson won’t come out and say it, but it kind of seems like he doesn’t want to play for the Cardinals anymore. Just to give you a little refresher on the Peterson situation: The Cardinals corner demanded a trade back in October, only to apologize for making that demand a few months later, but the situation didn’t end there, because now, it looks like he wants to be traded again. Peterson has removed the Cardinals name from all of his social media accounts and he’s spent the past month taking passive-aggressive shots at the team. If you’ve ever watched literally any reality show involving a Millennial, those are usually the first two signs that a breakup is coming. Peterson even posted a photo of some of his former teammates who are no longer with him in Arizona, and that photo had an interesting caption, “My boys told me to watch out for the snakes in the long grass!”
With a new Cardinals coaching staff now in place, it would make since for them to start fresh with players who actually want to be in Arizona. Clearly, Peterson isn’t one of those players. If the Cards start to shop Peterson, every team in the NFL should call them with an offer. Not only is he a three-time All-Pro corner, but he’s also under contract for the next two seasons at the very reasonable rates of $11 million (2019) and $12.05 million (2020).
Although Peterson could get dealt anywhere, we’re sending him to the Chiefs and that’s because Kansas City has been doing everything possible to beef up a defensive unit that couldn’t stop anyone while ranking 31st overall in the NFL last season. After watching his defense choke away the AFC title game, Andy Reid is clearly trying to make sure that doesn’t happen again. Not only have the Chiefs already traded for Frank Clark and Emmanuel Ogbah, but they’ve also signed Tyrann Mathieu, Alex Okafor and Damien Wilson. If the Chiefs were to add Peterson to the mix, the defense would be nearly as scary as their offense. Also, based on Peterson’s Instagram picture, it seems Peterson would probably be pretty excited about the chance to reunite with Mathieu.
Two members of the Chiefs’ Hall of Fame — defensive end Neil Smith and running back Christian Okoye — will be grand marshals and give the command, “Drivers, Start Your Engines,” for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Digital Ally 400 on Saturday night at Kansas Speedway.
In addition, former Chiefs safety Mark Collins will wave the green flag to start the race.
For the next several months, the Chiefs will try to convert Lovett from an athletic quarterback into a versatile tight end/fullback who can be a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses in Andy Reid’s prolific offense. Lovett, through three practices, performed several tasks to show the Chiefs he has the combination of skills and smarts to perhaps make the gamble for both parties rewarding.
The most satisfying aspect of the camp for Lovett was that he made impressive receptions while recovering from a significant injury. Last year, Lovett sustained a broken left wrist in October but missed only one game for Princeton. He had surgery in February, and he participated in the Chiefs’ minicamp with a soft cast and brace to protect his wrist. Yet he didn’t drop any catchable passes.
“I wasn’t going to let the injury define my future,” Lovett said. “I was going to go out there and try to show my talent as best I can. I know one speed, so with my wrist, it’s been an adjustment, as far as not being able to do certain physical aspects of the H-back position.”
“They expect him to play a bunch in Week 1 — hence why they’re throwing so much at him during this rookie minicamp,” Palmer said on the NFL Network. “They expect because of his intelligence and the way he can line up all over the field, they want to play him a bunch right from the jump — obviously special teams, but they want to make him a part of this offense as well.”
Chiefs head coach Andy Reid didn’t give any specifics after minicamp about what he has planned for Hardman in Week 1 (which will be a road opener in Jacksonville), but he did tell reporters he was planning on giving Hardman more routes to learn once he got involved with the team’s offseason workout program.
“The next go-round (for Hardman and other rookies) is after the second week of Phase 2 (of the offseason workout program),” Reid told reporters Monday. “They have to leave for a week here. So they come back, they’re in that last week of Phase 2. Well, the rest of the guys are deep in it, so he’s got to do some catch-up work and get caught up with some of the routes we weren’t putting in for this camp and take a look at those. You’ve got to throw it at him; somewhere he’s got to go, and he’s extremely smart so he should be able to handle it.”
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
Projected compensatory pick: Round 4.
Key free-agent losses: Mitch Morse (Bills); Steven Nelson (Steelers); Chris Conley (Jaguars).
Key free-agent additions: Tyrann Mathieu (Texans); Alex Okafor (Saints).
Comp-pick analysis: The Chiefs lost five qualifiers and gained four, with Mitch Morse and Tyrann Mathieu as the top free agents from each column who will cancel each other out. While this pick could end up being a fifth-rounder, a fourth-round comp pick is still the favorite to head Kansas City’s way following the departure of cornerback Steven Nelson.
Kansas City Chiefs | Grade: A
The Kansas City Chiefs desperately need to improve a defense that allowed 405.5 yards per game last season, second-most in the NFL. This is why undrafted free agents such as Clemson cornerback Mark Fields have a chance to make the team.
Fields was not a major piece of the Clemson defense in 2018, but he did a solid job in coverage when targeted. Though he only had seven tackles, he also had five pass breakups. He could catch on as a nickel or dime corner early.
Former Texas linebacker Gary Johnson could also find a home on Kansas City’s defense. He’s an aggressive defender with penetrating ability—he had 90 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks in 2018.
The Chiefs are also still trying to replace Kareem Hunt at running back, which is why former Washington State running back James Williams could be valuable. He’s a tremendous receiving back who caught 83 passes for 613 yards and four touchdowns last season and could be a dangerous piece in Andy Reid’s offense.
Morning Bowl of (T)Weeties:
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