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KC Chiefs Have Third Best Returning Starting Lineup in 2016

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The national media is starting to recognize the KC Chiefs as a playoff contender this season, and now The Washington Post is jumping on board the bandwagon. They ranked the Chiefs as having the third best returning starting lineup this season.

With the Kansas City Chiefs finally getting that playoff win monkey off their back last season, media outlets are beginning to take them seriously when it comes to the 2016 season.

Jeff Dooley of The Washington Post recently ranked the top five returning starting lineups in the NFL, and he put the Chiefs at number three. Here’s what Dooley had to say about his ranking,

"The Chiefs are arguably the most surprising inclusion on this list, in part because they don’t have the same perceived level of star power as teams that barely missed the cut, like Carolina, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati or Seattle. But their lack of weaknesses boosts them up to No. 3 on this list."

This paragraph immediately reminds me of the Kansas City Royals. The Royals haven’t had that one big superstar on their team during their two World Series runs, but they’ve shown that they’re winners, and that’s all that really matters, right?

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The Chiefs are the same way. While some NFL teams have an elite quarterback or others have that stud defensive player who’s in commercials all the time, the Chiefs are rolling with a bunch of very talented players, but none who hog the spotlight.

Out of their entire starting lineup from a season ago, the only guys not for sure returning are Sean Smith (who’s with Oakland now), Husain Abdullah (retired this offseason), and Mike DeVito (retired this offseason). Justin Houston might not be playing right away, but that’s due to injury. He’ll be back when he can.

When it came to whether the KC Chiefs were trending up or down, Dooley said down.

"Without a major breakthrough on offense, including the play of the offensive line (after Schwartz, the highest-graded O-line starter is second-year center Mitch Morse, at 72.2), it’s hard to see the Chiefs moving up into the top two. But this should remain one of the more solid, balanced and overall quality rosters in the NFL this season."

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This sort of surprised me honestly. The Chiefs might not have as good of a defense as they did a season ago, but their offense is definitely better. For one, their offensive line is much improved and it’s yet another year for Travis Kelce and Jeremy Maclin to go out there and play hard.

As for the rest of the list, the Arizona Cardinals came in at number one, and it’s hard to disagree with that. They’re definitely going to be a lot of people’s Super Bowl pick this season.

The Patriots came in at number two, but Dooley had them trending downwards. After the Chiefs at number three, the list rounds out with the Packers at four and the Raiders at five. Dooley apparently is yet another guy who believes soundly in the Oakland Raiders, but let’s wait until the pressure is actually on them before we start crowning them at anything, please.

Next: Do the Chiefs have the best roster in the AFC West?

All in all, it’s nice to see the Kansas City Chiefs getting some recognition by the national media. This offseason it just seems like they’re being overshadowed by all that Oakland has done, and while the Raiders should be okay this year, they haven’t had a winning record in over a decade.

The Chiefs are primed for success in 2016 and their returning starting lineup should help them pave the way to another fun season in Kansas City.