Kansas City Chiefs: Jaye Howard

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs have signed veteran defensive lineman Kevin Vickerson, according to Pro Football Talk. The addition fills the void left by the season-ending injury to defensive end Mike DeVito. DeVito ruptured his Achilles tendon in Sunday's loss to Tennessee and was to have surgery.

Jaye Howard and Vance Walker will share DeVito's spot in the base defense. Howard is an interesting prospect. He joined the Chiefs last season off waivers from Seattle but played little.

He played a lot in the preseason because a hand injury kept DeVito from playing and Howard handled it well.

"Howard is an explosive player," coach Andy Reid said. "His big thing was just making sure that was something that took place on every play. Consistency was the factor, he's shown us that he can do that throughout his time here. He had a good preseason with us and now will have an opportunity to get in there and play a little bit more."

Walker was signed from Oakland during the offseason as a free agent but played just one snap against the Titans.

Either way, the Chiefs will miss DeVito. He was an underrated player, strong against the run and improving as a pass-rusher.

Vickerson, 31, has played nine seasons for Miami, Tennessee and Denver with 43 starts.
This week's signing of Cory Grissom brings to 11 the number of defensive linemen under contract to the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs, after losing starting defensive end Tyson Jackson in free agency to the Atlanta Falcons, replaced him by signing Vance Walker away from the Raiders.

Grissom may not wind up making the roster when the regular season begins. He may just be a camp guy. The Chiefs could always use the depth but even without him they look like they have enough bodies on their defensive line.

In that regard, much depends on Walker. If he can be more than Jackson was and contribute as a pass-rusher, the Chiefs will be in great shape. Already, their line in the base defense looks good with Walker and Mike DeVito, who had a very good season as a run defender last season, as their ends and Pro Bowler Dontari Poe at nose tackle.

The Chiefs also have three intriguing players as their backups. One is Allen Bailey. Bailey has pass rush skills but also has played well at end when given a chance in their base defense. He's capable of more than the Chiefs have given him.

The others are Mike Catapano and Jaye Howard. Catapano showed more pass rush ability last season as a rookie than should be expected from a seventh-round draft pick from Princeton. He may never become an every-down player but could eventually help the Chiefs as a pass-rusher, perhaps as soon as this season.

"With regards to Catapano, he's been here day in and day out,'' general manager John Dorsey recently said. "He's been working his butt off. The guy is driven. He's one of those relentless warriors you want on your team. I'm excited to see him contribute as we go forward here in the second season for him. I've always said all along that those guys make the greatest strides in year one to year two and I can see great strides coming from Catapano.''

Howard is one of the seven players the Chiefs grabbed off waivers at the start of last season. He came from the Seattle Seahawks. Howard played little during the season, but the Chiefs thought enough of him to carry Howard all season on their active roster. The Seahawks drafted him in the fourth round in 2012 after he had a successful collegiate career at Florida.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs roster series moves on to the defensive line, where the Chiefs may part with a former first-round draft pick.

The roster (10): Chas Alecxih, Allen Bailey, Mike Catapano, Mike DeVito, Dominique Hamilton, Jaye Howard, Tyson Jackson, Brandon Moore, Dontari Poe, Jerrell Powe.

Potential 2014 free agents: Jackson, Powe.

The position: The Chiefs received a Pro Bowl season from Poe at nose tackle and very good seasons from DeVito and Jackson, at least in their run defense. But Jackson, their No. 1 pick in 2009, could be an unrestricted free agent. He would be nice to retain because Jackson has value. But since he hasn’t been an every-down player and the Chiefs don’t think of him in that term, they don’t need to bust their budget to re-sign him. If Jackson signs with another team, the Chiefs have a decision about how to replace him. It might be time to give Bailey a shot. He played well against the run and has some pass-rush ability. If Bailey is in their lineup, the Chiefs would have little in the way of proven depth so adding to their numbers at these positions would be essential. The Chiefs need to find a nose tackle they’re comfortable with to provide some relief for Poe. He played a lot of snaps for a 346-pound guy. Powe could be that backup.

The Chiefs should keep: Bailey, Catapano, DeVito, Poe and Powe.

The Chiefs should dump: Alecxih, Hamilton, Howard, Jackson and Moore.

Free agency/draft priority: High if Jackson leaves. The Chiefs wouldn’t necessarily need to spend a lot of money or use a high draft pick, but they would need to make an investment. ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper in his first mock draft of the season has the Chiefs taking Notre Dame defensive end Stephon Tuitt in the first round. If when the draft rolls around Tuitt proves to be a good value when the Chiefs make the 23rd pick, they should take him.

Friday's Chiefs practice report

October, 18, 2013
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs could have their entire roster available to them in Sunday's game against the Houston Texans at Arrowhead Stadium. Starting free safety Kendrick Lewis (ankle) returned to practice on a limited basis and was listed on their injury report as having a 50-50 chance to play.

The other 12 players on their report were listed as probable. That includes cornerback Brandon Flowers (knee) and tight end Anthony Fasano (ankle/knee). Both were listed as being limited practice participants on Friday.

Everyone else on their injury report was listed as a full practice participant: wide receiver Donnie Avery (shoulder), offensive linemen Branden Albert (knee/elbow), Jon Asamoah (knee) and Jeff Allen (groin/hand), nose tackle Dontari Poe (ankle), fullback Anthony Sherman (knee), punter Dustin Colquitt (knee), tight end Kevin Brock (shoulder), linebacker Dezman Moses (toe) and defensive lineman Jaye Howard (non-injury related).