Pro Football Focus wrote up young players in the NFL who are on their way to being considered elite at their respective positions. The Kansas City Chiefs had two players make the list: Tyreek Hill and Chris Jones.
Austin Gayle of Pro Football Focus put the list together and the Kansas City Chiefs were the only team to have two players make the cut. No one is surprised to see Tyreek Hill on there, as he dazzled as a rookie in 2016 and backed it up with a strong sophomore season in 2017.
Chris Jones was chosen in the same draft as Hill, but he was a much higher draft pick, getting selected in the second round. Hill was a fifth round pick. Both have been great for the Chiefs and Pro Football Focus seems to think that they could be elite players down the road.
Hill’s great long speed is most notable on deep passes, as he led all wide receivers in deep (20-plus air yards) receiving yards (626) and ranked second in catch rate on deep passes (54.2) in 2017.
After earning a respectable 84.4 overall grade across 612 defensive snaps as a rookie, Jones improved his overall grade by 3.4 points to rank 12th among qualifying interior defenders at 88.2 in 2017. He also tied for ninth in pass-rush grade (85.2).
Chiefs fans never thought Tyreek Hill would blossom into the type of player he is now. He was a threat in the receiving, rushing, and special teams aspect of the game as a rookie and now has mainly become a receiving threat.
Hill still gets to see some returns on special teams, but he’s emerged as the number one wide receiver over the past year. That’s a position the Chiefs struggled to find consistency at, but they’ve found their guy now.
As for Jones, he’s been a blast to watch. For one, he’s always smiling and appears to really love playing in Kansas City. He’s also shown a knack for getting to the quarterback, posting eight and a half sacks in two seasons. Six and a half of those came in year two for the former second round pick.
What’s cool about these two particular players landing on the list is that they were both drafted in the same year, but far apart from each other. Jones was a second rounder while Hill went in the fifth round yet they’re both making a name for themselves in Kansas City with the Chiefs.
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Year three will be a telling one for both players, as Hill will have a new quarterback slinging the ball his way and Jones will be the face of a mostly young and rebuilding defense. If Jones can emerge as the leader of that defensive lineman group moving forward, perhaps the defense can get back on their feet sooner than we thought.