Sunday mornings during football season are a high-speed collision of gameday rituals, bold predictions, and pregame jitters. In the offseason, we opt to take it slow and recap the week that was.
Charles Robinson @CRob5769
Lead Writer – @ChiefsFocus
I don’t have many recurring dreams. You know the dream – you have it like 2-3 times a year maybe? Possibly more in some cases, but it’s almost always at the same place, same general time of year, around the same people? Maybe you’re at a lake house with your friends having a killer time and all of a sudden, dinosaurs are back. Maybe you’re walking along a certain street from your childhood with a friend or family member and you slip and your brain does the terrifying free fall thing, waking up faster than anything else scientifically possible?
Or maybe, like one of my few recurring dreams, you’re sitting in a lecture call at a college or university, maybe your alma mater. You’re surrounded by classmates, some you vaguely remember from school, but there’s just one huge problem. You’re about to take the final, and you haven’t been to a single class period this semester. You don’t even know what this class is about. A dream turns into an anxiety filled semi-nightmare, and you wake up confused.
Some weeks in the NFL offseason can make people feel like I feel after waking up from miserably failing a mystery final. You have to sit down and collect yourself, borderline write things down so you don’t lose track of them happening, and revisit these things to remember them correctly.
Think about it. During free agency, the news cycle moves so fast that you really don’t even have time to process the implications of one move before getting the next shoveled onto your plate. Within the first two days of free agency in 2022, Aaron Rodgers passive aggressively stuck with the Packers, Mr. Unliiiiimited Russell Wilson had been traded to Denver, Khalil Mack and JC Jackson were heading to the Chargers discussing who would get injured first on the plane ride out, Von Miller had robbed the Bills blind, Randy Gregory opted for a legal cannabis state, Marcus Williams traded Mardi Gras for Hampsterdam heading to Baltimore, and Christian Kirk reset the basement of receiver contracts. That last one set off a series of event just as dizzying as the ones I just mentioned above.
You see what I mean? Take weeks like that, the weeks leading up to the Draft and the Draft itself, and you have what big J’s would call a strong news cycle in the league. The offseason is peppered with weeks like that, the last couple of weeks included.
This week used to be peaceful. The week after the first rookie minicamps. A few noteworthy names popped across the wire, and there were some solid reactions from rookies and coaches alike after rookie minicamps wrapped up. And, of course, we’re only a few days away from each team getting into their OTAs as well. The new progression is much easier to track in weeks like this.
Free agency wise, there was not much to note other than I guess Sony Michel signing with the Dolphins, and the prospect that Jarvis Landry will inevitably be joining Tyrann Mathieu for their 10-year LSU reunion tour in New Orleans. Both still fantastic players and candidly player I kind of wish the Chiefs could have found a way to have in the lockerroom next year with a lot of youth being infused into it, but I digress and maintain faith that Brett Veach in the most intelligent football man of all the football men.
But what does the league do to juice up a week that’s notoriously known for just tying up some loose ends? SCHEDULE RELEASE FRENZY!!! A fantastic opportunity for more television ad revenue to be dispersed and fans to predict their team’s records before a single snap has been executed on a football field. Injuries? Nope, not this year! In all reality, this is one of the most fun drops the league does every year, and I think they’ve intentionally turned it into a pro-wrestling level spectacle. We’ll have much more on that later this week, so back to football for now.
Rookie camp seemed to go swimmingly for Andy Reid and his dozen+ new prospects coming in to attempt to show out and make a team that has hosted the last 4 AFC Championship games, winning 2 of those and a Super Bowl in 2019. As you all know. It just feels great to type that out from time to time.
Anyway, here’s a few good snippets from the rookie class below that will get you fired up :
Rookie corner Trent McDuffie :
“You guys know (former Chiefs safety) Tyrann Mathieu – not a very big guy, but we make plays. And that’s something that I go on to the field every day just knowing that I wanna be that guy that, I call it just like the spark guy – the guy you always see flashing on the screen here and there. And just all effort.”
Andy Reid on George Karlaftis :
“He’s got good hands it looks like, but the motor is what jumps out at you. He just goes and goes.”
You can brush up on why you should be a huge George Karlaftis fan by checking out my blog that will give you all the reasons to be from earlier this week.
Other Chiefs minicamp notes :
- Leo Chenal is a violent man who we should all be licking our chops about at linebacker
- Several defenders including Chenal, Bryan Cook, Joshua Williams, and others figure to be a factor on the 2022 Chiefs starting defense, which we projected during the week.
- Justyn Ross might be incredible? Or he might not make the team? High ceiling UDFA to keep tracking, we kicked off the week by discussing his potential ceiling.
- And while Malik Willis may or may not be getting the silent treatment from Ryan Tannehill in Nashville, we look back at the way one of KC’s former greats helped a current one get his footing in the NFL.
As for OTAs, well they’re literally right around the corner. During the offseason, the NFL allows for teams with new head coaches to start their offseason programs one week earlier than those with incumbents. Because of that, the Bears, Vikings, Giants, and Buccaneers will be kicking off their OTAs this week (either tomorrow or Tuesday in the case of the Bucs) with the majority of the remainder of teams starting next week (May 23).
The Philadelphia Eagles will start the following week. After all, why not get a late start on continuing to develop a young borderline QB and allowing him to get in a team setting with his new $100 million wide receiver quicker? And the Bengals will start their June 6 because making it to the Super Bowl means you’re going undefeated this season with a first-place schedule and a downgraded defense.
For your Chiefs? The will get OTAs underway May 25-26, a break for Memorial Day Weekend, then continued May 31-June 2, and June 7-10. This will be one of the most highly anticipated OTA periods for KC for two reasons – 1, the massive influx of rookie talent and new faces at receiver and the lofty expectations on both of those groups. And 2, we’re now socially obligated to make way too big of a deal out of everything that happens during the course of a NFL offseason.
By the time we get to the regular season, the teams won’t even need to play the games. When you tally free agency grades, draft grades, OTAs performances and training camp standouts, the internet will have analyzed every team so thoroughly that we can just go ahead and crown the Chargers as Super Bowl champs before we even put anyone on the field to play the actual game.
Fortunately for all of us, the games will go on and the results will be the results. Unfortunately for the Chargers, if historical trends stand as any indicator of the future, the on paper Lombardi will probably be the only one the Chargers hoist this season.
We’ll be back this week with another sales pitch to make a rookie your favorite Chief, this time rookie linebacker Leo Chenal, a breakdown of the schedule release and how that impacts the Chiefs chances of winning their 300th consecutive AFC West and defending the Wall at Arrowhead Stadium one more time for Lamar’s trophy, the final word on whether it’s better to win free agency or the draft, and a look at who may be the Aloha shirt goat.
Before you all enjoy your Sundays too hard, send some positive vibes and prayers – if you’re into that kind of thing – up to Buffalo. That was a senseless, disgusting act. To the victims, to their families, and to the entire city of Buffalo and anyone affected by senseless gun violence – my thoughts, prayers, and love are with you. This is not a political statement, this is a statement of empathy, pain, and one to project love to people who need it badly right now. Something that we as humans could stand to share with one another a little more often.