Former Chiefs Defensive End Receives Recognition for Stellar Play in UFL

Breeland Speaks, who was drafted by the Chiefs in 2018, has become a star in spring football over the last two years.
St. Louis Battlehawks v Michigan Panthers
St. Louis Battlehawks v Michigan Panthers / Nic Antaya/UFL/GettyImages

Kansas City Chiefs fans likely haven’t been watching the inaugural 2024 UFL season over the last couple of months. However, they’ve missed a ton of great action, with guys looking to get into the NFL and trying to get back to the league.

One player in particular, who is trying to get back to the NFL, is former Chiefs defensive end Breeland Speaks. Speaks was Brett Veach’s first draft pick, as he was selected in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft (46th overall pick).

The former Ole Miss standout didn’t do much in his lone season with the Chiefs, posting 24 combined tackles, eight quarterback hits, and three tackles for loss. 

Speaks was placed on injured reserve in the summer of 2019 before being suspended later that season and waived in Sept. 2020. 

Since then, the former second-round pick has bounced around the league, looking for his next opportunity. However, Speaks has made a name for himself in the UFL, as he’s been one of the best defensive players in the league for the Michigan Panthers.

The 6-foot-3 edge/outside linebacker was named to the All-UFL defensive team. Speaks led the league in tackles for loss (13) and sacks (9.5). The former Chief had 32 total tackles, as he and Daniel Wise were an absolute wrecking crew on the Panthers’ defensive line this season.

Based on his great play this season, there’s a chance Speaks could win Defensive Player of the Year in the UFL. 

The former second-round pick has dominated the spring football competition over the last two years. Last season in the USFL, Speaks racked up 53 total tackles and nine sacks. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Speaks get another NFL opportunity because of his excellent production.

However, Speaks will have to wait for that next NFL opportunity, as his Panthers will take on Birmingham Stallions on Saturday afternoon in the UFL playoffs.

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