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Three key defensive backs absent for Chiefs in offseason practice

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The roster of the Kansas City Chiefs is at the NFL limit of 90 players. While they could still make a personnel move or two, the roster they have now is at least close to the one they will take to training camp this summer at Missouri Western State University.

Here, we’ll conclude a series that looks at their roster by position. This time, it’s the defensive backs.

With the Chiefs last year: Husain Abdullah, Eric Berry, Sanders Commings, Marcus Cooper, Jamell Fleming, Phillip Gaines, Kelcie McCray, Deji Olatoye, Ron Parker, Sean Smith, Daniel Sorensen.

New to the Chiefs: De'Vante Bausby, Tyvon Branch, Justin Cox, Aaron Hester, Steven Nelson, Marcus Peters.

Analysis: The Chiefs are going through offseason practice without Berry, Peters and Nelson, three players who would be starting or challenging for playing time. Berry recently finished treatment for lymphoma. Peters, their first-round draft pick, and Nelson, a third-round choice, are sitting out because their college semesters have yet to conclude. At safety, the Chiefs prepared for Berry’s absence by re-signing Parker and signing Branch. Together with Abdullah, that gives the Chiefs a top three that looks solid. In Sorensen and Commings, the Chiefs have a couple of young safeties who look promising. Smith is the Chiefs’ top cornerback, and Gaines has played well in offseason practice as the other starter. Fleming and Cooper have played a lot for the Chiefs, and once Peters and Nelson arrive in time for minicamp in the middle of June the Chiefs will have plenty to choose from at cornerback. They might need that depth. Smith could be suspended for at least a couple of games by the NFL after his recent guilty plea for DUI.