Former Kansas Jayhawk, fullback Toben Opurum, was among the the eight players the Kansas City Chiefs signed to their practice squad over the weekend.
Joining Opurum are wide receiver Frankie Hammond, Jr, tight end Demetrious Harris, safety Malcolm Bronson, linebacker Darin Drakeford, and offensive linemen Tommie Draheim, Matt Reynolds, and Rokevious Watkins. All but but the offensive linemen are rookies.
Frankie Hammond, Jr. showed some promise has a kick returner and wide receiver for the Chiefs this preseason. At 6’1″, 184 pounds, he has the height but could use a little more bulk on his slim frame. With question marks in the Chiefs wide receiving corps evident and the always present threat of injury, Hammond, Jr. may get a chance to play a few games before the season out. With a little more seasoning, Hammond, Jr. may be able to offer some production in the future.
Demetrious Harris, at 6’7″, 230, started 28 games last season for the Panthers of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, for their basketball team. He has the size but lacks the polish and experience to play just yet in the NFL. Antonio Gates and Tony Gonzalez are two examples of guys who played college basketball, yet had success in the NFL at tight end, although Gonzalez was a very successful tight end in college as well. If Harris can develop into even a half the player that either Gates and Gonzalez have been, the Chiefs will have a winner in Harris.
Darin Drakesford showed some nice skills at linebacker this preseason but needs more experience to handle playing time. He did show a nice ability to pursue the ball on the field. With a year under his belt on the practice squad, he may be able to contribute in 2014.
With only Anthony Sherman on the Chiefs’ active roster at fullback, Toben Opurum may have a chance to play this season as he offers some skill running the ball and could help on special teams. If not, he should have a future in the NFL.
All of the players signed are at positions that could be argued are positions that lack depth on the Chiefs active roster. These are smart signings because in emergencies, most of these players could be activated for a game or two. Obviously, John Dorsey and Andy Reid see something in each one to justify hanging onto for the future.