Jarrod Thurman @JarrodChiefsFCS Chiefs Focus @Chiefsfocus
The Chiefs have had a multitude of really good players play for the team for brief time frames. I’m going to rank these players by how they performed with the Chiefs and not by their careers as a whole. My requirement for this page is they had to of played no more than 3 seasons for the Chiefs (which excludes players like Jared Allen) and had to of had success with other teams, as in Pro Bowls, All-Pro, etc. I will not include players like Gale Sayers, who was drafted by the Chiefs but never played for the team. This list will also exclude players who joined late in a season, like Darrelle Revis and Terrell Suggs. They will be ranked from worst to first.
Warren Moon played for the Chiefs in 1999 and 2000 but is more known for his time with the Oilers and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He didn’t do a whole lot in his 2 seasons with the Chiefs but this is partially because he was 43 and 44 in his seasons with the team. He played in 3 games throwing for 228 yards 1 touchdown and 1 interception in 3 games. He did start the Chiefs’ week 13 game in 2000 against the Chargers when Elvis Grbac was injured.
Le’Veon Bell joined the Chiefs in week 6 of 2020 and spent the rest of the season on the roster including the playoffs. He didn’t play in week 17 and barely played in the playoffs. Bell was a 3x time Pro Bowler and 2x All-Pro selection with the Steelers where he was known for his patience waiting for holes to develop. He only managed to rush for 254 yards and 2 touchdowns in one season with the Chiefs.
LeSean McCoy faired a little bit better in the 2019 season with the Chiefs than Bell did the following year and did get his first Super Bowl ring that season. He is more known for his successful tenures with the Eagles and Bills. He still only managed to rush for 465 yards and 4 touchdowns. The most notable play of his brief tenure was against the Lions when Travis Kelce caught a pass and tossed it to McCoy who gained extra yardage on the play. However, late in the season and the playoffs, he either was inactive or didn’t play in their final 5 games including the playoffs.
One player who might get forgotten who actually played for the Chiefs is Mike Webster. Webster’s tenure with the Pittsburgh Steelers made him one of the best centers in NFL history and led to his Hall of Fame induction. He played for the Chiefs in 1989 and 1990 starting in all 16 games in 1989 and started 7 games in 1990 before getting injured and having Tim Grunhard become the starting center. The Chiefs originally wanted him to be their offensive line coach but he played for the team instead. While it’s hard to measure the success of an offensive lineman, in 1989, Christian Okoye had a career year with 1,480 yards and 12 touchdowns, and the Chiefs had the 4th best-rushing offense in the NFL, that’s a pretty good sign he made a difference. Following Webster’s death in 2002 at just 50, the brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy, also known as CTE, was discovered in his brain during his autopsy. This story was featured in the 2015 movie “Concussion” starring Will Smith with David Morse playing Webster.
Morten Andersen is one of only two pure kickers in the Hall of Fame. Both pure kickers in the Hall of Fame played for the Chiefs at some point. Andersen played for the Chiefs in 2002 and 2003. He only missed 8 field goals and all 8 were over 40 yards, which when you factor in he was in his 40s at the time, that’s pretty good. He only missed one extra point. In 2003 when the Chiefs had the highest-scoring offense in the league, he set a career-high in extra points with 58, which led the NFL by 7 extra points which is 2 or 3 games worth of extra points for most kickers.
Ty Law is more known for his time with the Patriots, but he spent the 2006 and 2007 seasons with the Chiefs recording 6 interceptions in those 2 seasons. In the Chiefs playoff game against the Colts in the 2006-07 playoffs, he recorded his final two interceptions of Peyton Manning, who he intercepted 9 times in his career including the playoffs, however, if you remember that game you’ll remember the Chiefs were dominated in that game 23-8 only recording 126 yards of offense with Law’s interceptions being 2 of the very few highlights for the Chiefs in the game.
Carlos Dunlap had a successful 11 seasons with the Bengals where he made 2 Pro Bowls and was the franchise’s all-time sack leader, but never quite got the recognition he deserved. While on paper he only had 4 sacks with the Chiefs in 2022, he was always in the backfield creating pressure for quarterbacks. His leadership also helped George Karlaftis in his transition to the NFL. When the Chiefs defeated the Jaguars in the divisional round, it gave him his first playoff win of his career having lost all 6 of his previous playoff appearances with the Bengals and Seahawks. This eventually led to Dunlap reaching his dream of winning a Super Bowl, the only player on this list to win one with the Chiefs.
Andre Rison very quietly had a fantastic career. Some have pushed for him to make the Hall of Fame, however, he played what is probably the hardest skill position to make the Hall of Fame with. He was nicknamed “Bad Mood Rison” early in his career and “Spider-Man” during his time with the Chiefs. His personal life made headlines frequently as well, including his relationship with musician Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes of the group TLC. He was a bit of a journeyman in his career having played for 7 teams. He spent 3 seasons with the Chiefs. He’s one of only two players on this list who made a Pro Bowl with the Chiefs. He made the Pro Bowl during the Chiefs 13-3 1997 season, after recording 1,092 yards and 7 touchdowns, both of which led the Chiefs last season. He also had more receiving yards than Chris Carter and Joey Galloway that season.
Joe Montana for many years was the undisputed greatest of all time. He joined the Chiefs in 1993 and made the Pro Bowl. Though strangely it was after only throwing 2,144 yards and 13 touchdowns in 11 games, both career lows for seasons he played in at least 10 games. He would play 2 seasons and recorded a 17-8 record as a starter. Until a different former 49ers quarterback broke the playoff losing streak (Alex Smith), he was the last Chiefs quarterback to win a playoff game from 1993 to 2014. He took the Chiefs to the AFC Championship game in 1993 after beating the Steelers and Oilers. His final career playoff victory was the 28-20 victory over the Oilers in the divisional round that year. He threw the final pass of his career in the Chiefs’ playoff loss to the Dolphins in 1994, a pass that was an incomplete pass to Willie Davis with 15 seconds left on the clock. His last career touchdown pass was in that game too, which was a 57-yard completion to Kimble Anders.
The Chiefs have had no shortage of legends wear the Arrowhead on their helmet over the years, some for only a couple of seasons, some spent most or all of their career the Chiefs.