The most recent
Talking of developmental success tales, Fenton is one other instance of a participant with humble beginnings who has grown right into a dependable contributor. The Chiefs chosen Fenton within the sixth spherical (No. 201 total) of the 2019 Draft, and within the time since, the previous South Carolina standout has carved out a task as an efficient member of Kansas Metropolis’s secondary.
He doesn’t see the sector as usually as another members of the protection, however when known as upon, Fenton has usually delivered. In actual fact, in accordance with Professional Soccer Focus, Fenton was the Chiefs’ top-graded cornerback in 2019 (minimal 100 snaps) and Kansas Metropolis’s second-best nook in 2020 behind solely L’Jarius Sneed. Fenton solely tallied 694 snaps between these two campaigns, in order that context is necessary, however the level stays that Fenton has impressed every time he’s taken the sector.
Fenton has expertise at each slot and out of doors nook, making him a helpful chess piece who can contribute in varied methods. With former cornerback Bashaud Breeland not in Kansas Metropolis, Fenton may earn an excellent bigger function shifting ahead.
2020 rank: 1 | 2019 rank: 2
That is the bottom arsenal rating for the Chiefs within the Patrick Mahomes period, by which his weapons have beforehand are available first, second and first once more. The drop-off comes after Travis Kelce produced arguably the best season by a decent finish in league historical past and Tyreek Hill chipped in with 1,276 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns. No person — not the Seahawks, not the Vikings, not anyone — had a greater one-two punch of receiving weapons than the Chiefs did a 12 months in the past, and so they’re each again for 2021.
Every thing else doesn’t look fairly nearly as good. The sooner variations of those groups had Kareem Hunt, and whereas Clyde Edwards-Helaire was anticipated to be immediately impactful as Kansas Metropolis’s major working again, the LSU product was largely nameless as a rookie. Mecole Hardman didn’t make any form of second-year leap and may high out as nothing greater than a downfield burner. Sammy Watkins is gone — the oft-injured receiver couldn’t be counted on for full seasons of labor, however the Chiefs solely introduced in a single substitute in rookie fifth-round decide Cornell Powell. Kansas Metropolis would have arguably the league’s worst depth chart at extensive receiver or tight finish if it misplaced Hill or Kelce.
However the Chiefs performed in far more shut video games final 12 months than you may bear in mind.
In 2018, the Chiefs led by 6.9 factors on common at halftime and held 11 halftime leads.
In 2019, the Chiefs led by 7.5 factors on common at halftime and held 11 halftime leads.
However in 2020, the Chiefs led by solely 3.5 factors on common at halftime and held solely 9 halftime leads.
With video games way more doubtful at halftime in 2020 than in prior years, the Chiefs needed to do two issues they haven’t achieved in a long time.
First, their protection (behind defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo) needed to maintain opponents to just one.75 ppg within the third quarter. Researching again 30+ years, the Chiefs have by no means held opponents to such futile manufacturing within the third quarter. In actual fact, Kansas Metropolis’s third quarter protection was not solely one of the best within the NFL, nevertheless it was the second-best third quarter factors allowed since 2010 and the eleventh better of any staff of the final 30 years.
How he fared with new staff: Montana signed a three-year, $10 million cope with the Chiefs however was unable to put on his acquainted No. 16 as a result of it was retired after being worn by one other Corridor of Famer, Len Dawson. He opted for No. 19. The Chiefs received a division title in Montana’s first season because the starter — their first in 22 years. They misplaced to the Buffalo Bills within the AFC Championship Recreation, and Montana went to his eighth and last Pro Bowl. After a 9-7 season in 1994 that included a win over Younger and the 49ers in a Week 2 Monday Night time Soccer matchup, Montana retired from the NFL at age 38.
Finest place teams: Defensive inside, security
Main the best way on this Chiefs defensive is two-time Professional Bowler Chris Jones joined by excellent nostril sort out Derrick Nnadi. Leaping to the opposite aspect of the protection, they area three-time All-Professional security Tyrann Mathieu. In between, it’s not so nice with the Chiefs sitting in final place at edge rusher, linebacker, and cornerback. However DI and S are robust sufficient to maintain them out of the cellar on protection.
Across the NFL
Akers was set to headline a backfield that started 2020 as a committee, however noticed the Florida State product rise to the highest of the group down the stretch of the season. Akers completed the season as Los Angeles’ main rusher thanks largely to his elevated workload from Week 13 onward, going from averaging simply 6.3 makes an attempt per recreation to over 20 within the latter portion of the season.
The uptick in carries produced outcomes for Akers, who averaged 92.1 yards per recreation, scored 4 touchdowns and broke 130 yards twice in that span. His 645 speeding yards from Week 13 via Tremendous Bowl LV have been the fourth most in your complete NFL, giving the Rams loads of purpose to be enthusiastic about the way forward for their working recreation within the post-Todd Gurley period.
2. Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns
MVP odds: +3500
Don’t fall into the lazy argument that Baker Mayfield can’t win league MVP as a result of he performs in a run-heavy offense. When quarterbacks Matt Ryan (2016) and Tom Brady (2017) received the award, their respective golf equipment ranked fifth and tenth on the bottom whereas itemizing simply exterior the highest 10 in whole carries.
Final 12 months, the Cleveland Browns’ speeding assault ranked fourth in carries and third in yards, whereas the passing assault listed twenty eighth in makes an attempt and twenty fourth in yards. This membership might area a extra balanced assault within the upcoming time period with a wholesome Odell Beckham Jr. again within the fold.
In 2020, Beckham missed 9 video games due to a torn ACL. Although he’s had some chemistry points with Mayfield, logging a 55.1 p.c catch price during the last two campaigns, the quarterback-receiver duo may hit its stride in Yr 3 collectively.
Head coach Kevin Stefanski runs an offense that prominently options tight ends within the passing recreation. Final offseason, the Browns signed two-time Professional Bowler Austin Hooper, and so they nonetheless have an athletic pass-catcher on the place in David Njoku. As a rookie fourth-rounder, Harrison Bryant caught 24 passes for 238 yards and three touchdowns final 12 months.
If two of the three tight ends keep wholesome and energetic within the aerial assault, Mayfield would have stable big-bodied receiving choices along with Jarvis Landry and Beckham within the passing recreation.
Lastly, Stefanski hopes to see Mayfield develop with a stronger grasp of the offense, which can result in extra passing performs and fewer emphasis on the run.
The Browns’ offensive continuity offers Mayfield an edge over Alvin Kamara for the No. 2 slot.
Coming into his fourth skilled season, Jackson has gone from undrafted to being on the verge of a serious payday. Since 2019, the Florida native has saved opposing receivers on lockdown, permitting the bottom passer score within the league (per PFF), a paltry 48. That’s 14.4 score factors higher than the cavalcade of stars which can be second over that point: Tre’Davious White, Stephon Gilmore and Xavien Howard. Jackson additionally has extra interceptions (14) than any defensive again throughout this stretch. Is he a legit No. 1 nook?
“In fact I’m,” Jackson advised me over the telephone Monday, “I’d by no means accept much less. I’d by no means say I’m No. 2, No. 3. I’m No. 1.”
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WR1 – Carlos Carson, 1987
Since he performed on some abysmal Kansas Metropolis groups within the ’80s, Carson is a participant that many Chiefs followers overlook. However regardless of the staff going 4-11 in 1987 — and Invoice Kenney averaging solely 191.5 yards per recreation — Carson managed to haul in 55 receptions for 1,044 yards and 7 touchdowns in solely 12 video games performed, averaging 19.0 yards per reception. He was chosen to the Pro Bowl that 12 months — one among two such honors he would earn.
Honorable Point out: Stephone Paige
A tweet to make you suppose
Cannot wait to run quick subsequent week
— Ty Hill (@cheetah) July 19, 2021
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