Finally, Kansas City Chiefs football is upon us. After an eventful off-season, Kansas City is ready for some Arrowhead football. This off-season raised many interesting questions due to many changes made within the franchise. Who will be the backup quarterback? What does new general manager Brett Veach have in store for the team? Who will replace Jeremy Maclin’s offensive presence this season?
Recently, the team released their first unofficial 2017 depth chart. Once it came out, plenty of questions were somewhat answered. Obviously, this is not an official roster, where all positions are set in stone. Many things will more than likely change between now, and once the official season starts, but Chiefs Kingdom is fortunate enough to get an idea of what the team shapes up to be before preseason football is over. Overall, the depth chart looks convincing. Talent in every single position is a bonus.
If there was any concern as of now about the team, it would be this pretty serious issue: the wide receiver corps is uncomfortably young. Tyreek Hill, Chris Conley, Albert Wilson, Demarcus Robinson, De’Anthony Thomas, and Jehu Chesson all together average around two seasons in the NFL. This predicament creates a challenge for these young players. Who will step up and produce Maclin’s numbers this season, behind Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce? Luckily enough, each young wide receiver has plenty of talent to contribute, but who is willing to step up and be that contributor? The winner here is pretty obvious: the most exciting player on the roster in Tyreek Hill.
Kansas City Chiefs Answer to Young Wide Receiver Corps: Tyreek Hill
Stats Never Lie – Especially Hill’s
Despite Tyreek Hill being a controversial draft pick back in the 2016 NFL draft, Hill is in position to be the go-to receiver for Alex Smith and the Chiefs’ flashy offense. When the Chiefs made the move by drafting Hill in 2016, many thought it was a move to increase the production for the team on special teams by returning punts, and kickoffs. Scouts doubted him before the draft, thinking he was unable to catch the football with consistency. It is pretty obvious that Hill has overcome many challenges to get where he is today. So as Hill often has done in his life, he tuned out his critics, as if he used them as motivation. Hill did a little more than returning kicks, and punts for the Chiefs. Hill went to work last season catching the ball.
Hill was targeted 81 times, and caught 61 of those passing attempts, putting up 593 receiving yards. These are some impressive numbers for a prospect who was supposedly inconsistent catching the football. The stats show that the sky’s the limit for Hill, as he proved to be one of the most exciting talents in the NFL last season. The Chiefs expect nothing less in this upcoming season. Keep an eye out for number ten for the Chiefs, but only if you can. He is easy to lose track of on the field, because Hill is blazing fast.
Hill is the fastest player in the NFL right now, and no this is not a biased Chiefs’ fan opinion. To back this up, ESPN would have to agree with this one. Speed does not automatically consider you a top notch receiver, but Hill’s speed is simply unheard of within the NFL. Hill leaves even his teammates in awe with his lightning quick movements on the football field.
De’Anthony Thomas Should Replace Tyreek Hill on Special Teams
Without Maclin, this puts Tyreek Hill in perfect position to have an even better season for Kansas City. He has a chance to be targeted more times during games, and not just being on the offensive side of the football acting as a decoy. Although it appears Hill is not entirely a human being, he is. If Hill takes the responsibility of being the number one receiver for Smith, he cannot return kickoffs and punt returns as well. That is just simply too much for a player. So who takes Hill’s spot on special teams? Insert the second fastest player on the Chiefs’ roster: De’Anthony Thomas.
Kansas City has been pretty slow using Thomas as a threat. So, not only does this give Hill an opportunity to have more of a breakout season, it gives Thomas a chance to show what he is capable of. Isn’t it awesome to have such a talent spewing roster? It seems on the offensive end in some what, shape, or form, the team has answers.
What about Chris Conley?
Chris Conley would be a person to argue with being a more developed receiver than Hill, but so far Conley has not quite produced enough for Kansas City to be considered a reliable target. Hill’s season last year versus Conley’s seems to be incomparable. Conley had some solid games last year, but it does not better Hill’s season. Hill is just too fast and shifty to be outworked and out-hustled by anyone on the roster, yet. Conley is very talented, and has plenty of potential to have a great season. It would be very surprising if the team’s passing game was built around Conley himself and Kelce, instead of Hill and Kelce.
Albert Wilson and Demarcus Robinson come in as honorable mention to be the number two target for Smith, but they did nothing last season to be considered reliable and valuable to the Chiefs offense. Although there is plenty of talent in these two names, it is doubtful that they will produce big numbers. Also, rookie Jehu Chesson has had a solid training camp, but is too inexperienced to be considered a threat for opposing defenses.
Tying it Together
Once again, this should be another fun season for the Chiefs. After an eventful off-season, fans are excited for some positive football being played by Kansas City. Plenty of talent shines in their depth chart for this again, and many questions are raised before preseason football is over. Those questions will certainly get answered, which will set the tone for the team, and put the faithful Kansas City minds at ease. So, who will be Smith’s favorite wide receiver target? Who is going to step up and be the “guy”? The winner here is pretty obvious: the most exciting player on the roster – Tyreek Hill. The season is upon us, and it is going to be a fun one.