The Kansas City Chiefs needed to figure out a solution at defensive end. Their failure to do so is a problem now.
When the Kansas City Chiefs offseason came and went, many were surprised when the team entered training camp without seriously addressing the question marks at the defensive end position.
The team brought in now Pittsburgh Steelers pass-rusher Melvin Ingram for a free agent visit, but that clearly never materialized. After missing out, the team signed Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Jarran Reed to a 1-year deal.
Seeing as Reed was capable of getting pressure in the middle and could potentially take double-teams off others, the team felt comfortable moving Chris Jones out to EDGE, a position he expressed interest in playing before and had been utilized incrementally in the past.
That would give the Chiefs a nice pass-rushing trio of Frank Clark, Jarran Reed, and Chris Jones. At least in theory.
However, that plan could not have gone worse thus far into the season.
Reed has not had the impact that justifies moving Jones, your best defensive tackle, to defensive end. Quite frankly, the experiment of moving Jones to the edge has been a disappointment. He can’t set the edge or guard RPO’s when he’s out there and he’s still getting double-teamed too much to make an impact.
Then there’s Clark.
A lot of people who read my content have pointed out my axe to grind with Clark, but I mean his impact, or lack thereof, is truly embarrassing for the price tag. That’s really all that needs to be said.
The Kansas City Chiefs made a mistake by not attacking the need at defensive end
Right now, the Chiefs are currently 29th in the NFL in sacks. They struggle to get to the quarterback. The only real threat on the line appears to be Jones and that’s a problem for the Kansas City Chiefs.
The most frustrating part about it is that this was also the case last year and we went into the offseason saying, “This team needs a veteran pass-rusher” or an addition at defensive end. And what did they do to fix it? Brought back Alex Okafor?
What has he done?
The Chiefs need more than a measly investment in Joshua Kaindoh in the 4th round of the draft. I myself even talked myself into maybe Tershawn Wharton or Khalen Saunders taking the next step but they just aren’t that guy. They’re good rotational pieces.
Looking at the snap counts for Chargers at Chiefs, Mike Danna and Okafor played the most snaps at end and Danna had the most pressures of any end in the game.
That cannot be the case.
I will tell you right now that if the Chiefs make it back to the Super Bowl, it’s going to be hard for them to win if they are as bad at getting pressure on the opposing team’s quarterback as they were in Super Bowl LV where Tom Brady faced the lowest pressure rate in his career in a Super Bowl.
Let’s just be honest.
Brett Veach dropped the ball by not getting a defensive end. Melvin Ingram was attainable and looks great for Pittsburgh so far. Justin Houston went unsigned for the longest time and has made an impact for Baltimore.
Luckily for Veach, there’s still options available either via trade or the scrap heap. Olivier Vernon is still a free agent and might be able to give you some juice on the edge. They need a body and or quality depth because the answer doesn’t look like it’s in-house at the moment.