Lets take a look at Chiefs defensive backs for 2018 vs 2019, and see where we are at compared to last year. First, lets do the cornerbacks.
So we swapped out Nelson for Breeland. Ward wasnt on the starting lineup until week 16. So its kind of another swap, getting Ward for Scandrick. All in all, this group does not feel like an improvement. If Breeland’s play hold up, this group might be ahead. Also, Ward’s potential > Scandrick.
This group becomes better overall when Clairborne joins the team in week 5. Until then though, this group has serious depth issues. this CB group is super thin, and is one injury away from starting a 6th round rookie. I do not believe Tremon Smith will play CB week 1, even if needed. besides, Smith will be gone once DAT is back next week.
NFL is a league of atrition, and one of the 3 starting CBs will miss some time in the first 4 weeks. So I am extremely worried. I hope Veach makes at least another move to strengthen this group.
Next, lets do Safeties.
While this group looks worse if you compare the roster, last year’s group was in shambles. Sorenson was out for half the season, Berry was out “day to day”. Things were so bad, they had to sign Parker off the street (he was cut by Atlanta).
This year’s group looks better in comparison. with hindsight, we can say Eric Berry was not available in 2018, while Mathieu is. Sorenson is the presumed starter, but i think we will see more of Thornhill, Watts and Lucas. so this group is in a much better position. tbh though, if Thornhill or Watts isnt starting by midseason, i would think this group’s potential has declined.
So looking at this now, i think CB is still a big concern for Chiefs, while Safeties are ok for now. and we know Clairborne can play from week 5. but lets assume he wont have significant playing time until week 6. (give him a week to get fully in). So who are the opponents in the first 5 weeks?
Chiefs first 3 opponents are not so tough on WR or overall team composition. Below are them:
Jaguars (not the best WR group, but they have potential. old friend conley, marqise Lee, Keelan Cole and DJ Chark are the main WRs).
Raiders (decent WR group – Brown, Williams, JJ Nelson & Renfrow, but thats all they have),
Ravens (make them throw, stack the box).
Week 4 opponents Lions (Amendola, Golladay, Marvin Jones with Jesse James & Hockenson) will pose a threat to this DB group, and we will see how they do then.
The week after that, Colts come to town. they have a decent receiving group (Hilton, Campbell, Funchess with decent TE options like Ebron & Doyle). So they will pose the 2nd challenge to the DB group. and after that, it will only get more difficult as Chiefs square off against the Texans in week 6.
in light of that, i think now is the time for Veach to add some more depth to the CB group. what do you think?