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Thread: Reviewing KCís offensive line

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    Default Reviewing KCís offensive line


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    Brian Bahr/Getty
    By Michael Ash
    Warpaint Illustrated Columnist
    Posted Mar 27, 2008



    After discussing what the Chiefs arenít doing with the offensive line last week, itís only fair to take a look at the other side of the coin. Many of the linemen already with the team will be competing for starting jobs next season, so we'll evaluate those currently on the roster.

    OT Anthony Alabi

    Alabi played his college ball at TCU and was taken in the fifth round of the 2005 draft by Miami, back during the Dolphinsí brief Nick Saban era. Coincidentally, the pick used to take Alabi originally belonged to the Chiefs, with the two teams swapping fifth-rounders that year as part of the Patrick Surtain trade.

    Alabi played 13 games in three years at Miami and was among their many cuts this offseason. He was claimed off waivers by four clubs, but with the worst record of the bunch, the Chiefs snagged him.

    He might be an unknown, but Alabi will be in the mix this year for the starting right tackle spot.

    OT Adrian Jones

    Herm Edwards drafted this former Jayhawk with the Jets back in 2004. He started every game during Edwardsí final year in New York, but his playing time dropped off dramatically after that season and he was ultimately released late in 2007.

    The Chiefs claimed Jones off waivers, but donít have any grand expectations for him. Heíll compete for a backup spot during camp.

    OT Travis Leffew

    The undrafted free agent has bounced from team to team since coming into the league in 2006. The Chiefs signed him off Atlantaís practice squad late last season and heíll be one of many linemen trying to earn a roster spot this offseason.

    OT Damion McIntosh

    He isnít the long-term answer at left tackle, but McIntosh held down the fort reasonably well in his first season as a Chief. Although heíll remain a starter in 2008, where exactly heíll line up seems up in the air at the moment.

    If the Chiefs can find a new left tackle in the draft, McIntosh is the obvious candidate to move to the opposite side of the line. But if the team can add two new tackles, or someone already on the roster steps up to fill the right tackle spot, McIntosh may be a consideration at guard.

    It would be a gamble, however, considering heís only played two games at guard in his career. He also didnít appear to be a particularly strong run blocker last season.

    C Rudy Niswanger
    Will Niswanger be KC's starting center in 2008?
    Brian Bahr - Getty
    Considered by many to be a key part of the future of KCís line, Niswanger looked promising in limited duty as a guard in 2007. Unfortunately, he suffered a season-ending knee injury late in the season and was forced to undergo surgery.

    The good news is that heís ahead of schedule in his recovery and should be ready for mini-camp. During Mondayís press conference, Herm Edwards said Niswanger would be the center if the season started today, so an issue that has been speculated about all offseason appears to have been resolved. This will allow Brian Waters to remain at guard and returns Niswanger to the position he played at LSU.

    G Tre Stallings

    A sixth-round pick in 2006, Stallings has been working with Will Shields to help improve his game. He appears capable athletically, but has apparently had trouble learning the playbook. Having already used up his practice squad eligibility, and with the Chiefs likely to bring in plenty of linemen before training camp, this will be an important offseason for Stallings as he fights to stay on the roster.

    OT Will Svitek

    Once considered KCís left tackle of the future, it seems those hopes were set a little too high. But Svitek showed promise at right tackle late last season and should be in the mix for that spot in 2008.

    OT Herb Taylor

    The Chiefs are high on Taylor, who was nothing short of dominant in college at TCU. He briefly filled in at left tackle against the Detroit Lions and looked solid. The team is hoping to see him step up to the next level this offseason and heís another player who will be in consideration for a starting role at right tackle. Depending on the other options, Taylor could also have an opportunity at guard.

    G Brian Waters

    Itís fair to say Waters didnít have his best season in 2007. Letís be honest, though - one man can only hold the wall up for so long before the entire dam finally breaks. Thereís been a lot of speculation as to which position heíll line up at next year, but that subject appears to have been put to rest with the announcement of Rudy Niswanger at center.

    The linchpin of the Chiefsí line and one of the teamís most vocal leaders, Waters will be relied on heavily as the reconstruction of the offensive line gets underway. Incidentally, it seems he may be looking for a new contract.

    Evaluation

    Only two spots along the line appear set at this point: Brian Waters at left guard and Rudy Niswanger at center. The most anticipated scenario is that left tackle will be manned by a rookie from the first or second round of the draft, but thatís certainly not a guarantee. There are a host of potential candidates for right tackle already on the roster.

    The biggest hole may be at right guard, where the Chiefs donít appear to have an obvious solution at the moment. Moving Damion McIntosh inside is only an option if both tackle positions are already set, and even then it may not be an ideal fit. Guard is yet another position the Chiefs may need to target early on in the draft.

    That brings us back to the overall problem the Chiefs are facing. Many seem to expect them to focus heavily on offensive linemen with their first few draft picks, if not throughout the entire draft itself. But thatís not a realistic solution for a team needing help in so many areas. Should Kansas City pass on talented corners and receivers just to stock up on linemen?

    Thereís no doubt the Chiefs have holes and question marks all over the offensive line. At this point, the best hope is that they find a few talented players in the draft while this yearís plan works out better than last yearís.

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    Rep to you.



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    I would say if they spend the 2nd rounder on a DB the remainder of the draft could be spent on O-linemen. Bowe/Webb/Sippio would be sufficient at WR if the running game returns to form.

    Oh and rep added.
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    Nice YZILLA

    Unfortunately I used up all my rep this afternoon on a bunch of post whores.

    Still good info.

    I'm worried about the guys who couldn't even make it as a back up on other teams though.

    I just don't trust Herms judgment.
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    what's are reps? You deserve some apparently!

    Good stuff!

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    Quote Originally Posted by rbedgood View Post
    I would say if they spend the 2nd rounder on a DB the remainder of the draft could be spent on O-linemen. Bowe/Webb/Sippio would be sufficient at WR if the running game returns to form.

    Oh and rep added.
    We're looking at possibly having anywhere from 10-15 picks and ONE DB is the only other position we should look at? I would be on the "fire Herm" bandwagon if we took ONE DB and 9 OL. That's just obsurd!!

    I'd be surprised if we take more than 3 or 4 OL in this draft.

    We will undoubtedly take an OT with one of our first 2 picks. I say this because we could either get Long at #5 or Clady around 10. If not, we'll be taking some OT with our 2nd round pick.

    For the record, my prediction for our first two picks (not necessarily according to round) will be Glenn Dorsey and Sam Baker.

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    Quote Originally Posted by texaschief View Post
    We're looking at possibly having anywhere from 10-15 picks and ONE DB is the only other position we should look at? I would be on the "fire Herm" bandwagon if we took ONE DB and 9 OL. That's just obsurd!!

    I'd be surprised if we take more than 3 or 4 OL in this draft.

    We will undoubtedly take an OT with one of our first 2 picks. I say this because we could either get Long at #5 or Clady around 10. If not, we'll be taking some OT with our 2nd round pick.

    For the record, my prediction for our first two picks (not necessarily according to round) will be Glenn Dorsey and Sam Baker.
    I still have not seen any reasons not to draft Clady if Long is not available.

    We need this player.

    We need to fix our O line really bad guy.

    The O cannot suffer for years while the D is shored up.
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    Quote Originally Posted by texaschief View Post
    We're looking at possibly having anywhere from 10-15 picks and ONE DB is the only other position we should look at? I would be on the "fire Herm" bandwagon if we took ONE DB and 9 OL. That's just obsurd!!

    He probably didn't mean that literally, he's just agreeing with everyone else here that OL is a need.

    I'd be surprised if we take more than 3 or 4 OL in this draft.

    So will I.

    We will undoubtedly take an OT with one of our first 2 picks. I say this because we could either get Long at #5 or Clady around 10. If not, we'll be taking some OT with our 2nd round pick.

    I hope you're right.

    For the record, my prediction for our first two picks (not necessarily according to round) will be Glenn Dorsey and Sam Baker.


    I think Long will fall to us in the first round, if not we take Clady. I'd like to see us get Antoine Cason or Brandon Flowers in the second round.


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    Quote Originally Posted by hermhater View Post
    I still have not seen any reasons not to draft Clady if Long is not available.

    We need this player.

    We need to fix our O line really bad guy.

    The O cannot suffer for years while the D is shored up.
    I'm not sure that J. Long will be drafted if he IS available at #5. Everything I've heard about him says he will be a dominating RT. We already have candidates at RT. Clady seems to be a top 10 pick, just not a top 5 pick. He keeps getting compared to Levi Brown. I think the Chiefs learned a lesson from last year not to reach...especially with a top 5 pick. Again, if it's Clady they want, they will do everything they can to trade down...which concerns me that they might take a poor trade out of desperation. I just don't think that will happen.

    A second round OT will fill the hole at LT just like a first round OT will....just PERHAPS not as dominatingly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by texaschief View Post
    I'm not sure that J. Long will be drafted if he IS available at #5. Everything I've heard about him says he will be a dominating RT. We already have candidates at RT. Clady seems to be a top 10 pick, just not a top 5 pick. He keeps getting compared to Levi Brown. I think the Chiefs learned a lesson from last year not to reach...especially with a top 5 pick. Again, if it's Clady they want, they will do everything they can to trade down...which concerns me that they might take a poor trade out of desperation. I just don't think that will happen.

    A second round OT will fill the hole at LT just like a first round OT will....just PERHAPS not as dominatingly.
    I've read Long could be a candidate for LT.


    "Everybody underestimates the kick in the groin." - Bas Rutten

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