Tuesday, June 17, 2014
What to watch at Chiefs minicamp
By Adam Teicher
The Kansas City Chiefs begin their three-day minicamp on Tuesday. Here are three things I'll be looking for:
The full-squad debut of De'Anthony Thomas. The Chiefs' fourth-round draft pick, Thomas hasn't been able to practice since the rookie camp shortly after the draft. Classes had still been in session at Oregon, where Thomas went to college, and NFL rules prohibited him from working with the Chiefs. That ban is now over and it will be interesting to see how Andy Reid utilizes Thomas' speed in the offense. He lined up in a variety of spots during rookie camp, including wide receiver, slot receiver and running back. He also should get a turn as the kickoff and punt returner.
The return of Travis Kelce. Another player who could provide an offensive boost, Kelce also hasn't practiced this spring. He had knee surgery last year, missing all of the season, and has been rehabbing, but Reid held out some hope Kelce could get some work this week. That's good news for the Chiefs, who other than Thomas added no significant new offensive skill players. Kelce is a tight end, but also lined up in a variety of spots before his injury last year. He showed then the ability to get down the field to beat coverage and make plays.
Life without Brandon Flowers. The Chiefs have been practicing without Flowers all spring but there was always the sense that having Marcus Cooper in the starting lineup was a temporary thing. The spot is Cooper's now and there doesn't appear to be anyone who can challenge him for the job. Ron Parker, who has been getting recent snaps in the starting lineup, has been beaten several times. Rookie Phillip Gaines, a third-round pick, doesn't look like he's ready to help yet.