“The Right 53″ Version 2.0

The Kansas City Chiefs are still in the opening stages of training camp, but they have already made a couple of roster moves.  If you listen to Todd Haley, they could mix and match their 80 players a few more times before first cut downs are due at the end of the preseason.

After taking a shot at the final roster back in June, I’ll adjust my predictions once a week between now and the final cuts.

Is this “The Right 53″?  You decide.

Quarterback (2)

Matt Cassel
Brodie Croyle

Running Back (4)

Jamaal Charles
Thomas Jones
Kestahn Moore
Tim Castille

Wide Receiver (7)

Dwayne Bowe
Chris Chambers
Dexter McCluster
Jerheme Urban
Terrance Copper
Quinten Lawrence
Jeremy Horne

Tight End (3)

Tony Moeaki
Leonard Pope
Leroy Banks

Offensive Line (9)

Branden Albert
Brian Waters
Casey Wiegmann
Ryan Lilja
Ryan O’Callaghan
Rudy Niswanger
Jon Asamoah
Colin Brown
Darryl Harris

Defensive Line (7)

Tyson Jackson
Shaun Smith
Glenn Dorsey
Ron Edwards
Wallace Gilberry
Alex Magee
Derek Lokey

Linebacker (9)

Tamba Hali
Mike Vrabel
Derrick Johnson
Corey Mays
Demorrio Williams
Andy Studebaker
Jovan Belcher
Cameron Sheffield
Pierre Walters

Cornerback (5)

Brandon Flowers
Brandon Carr
Javier Arenas
Maurice Leggett
Travis Daniels

Safety (4)

Eric Berry
Kendrick Lewis
Jon McGraw
Donald Washington

Specialists (3)

Dustin Colquitt
Ryan Succop
Thomas Gafford

Last Five In

Colin Brown
Derek Lokey
Darryl Harris
Travis Daniels
Jeremy Horne

First Five Out

Ike Ndukwe
Reshard Langford
Barry Richardson
Jake O’Connell
Javarris Williams

Bubble Thoughts

Unless Cassel gets hurt in the preseason again, the Chiefs will be better suited to carry only two QBs for roster flexibility.  If they need to bring in a third quarterback later in the season, Palko will likely be available whenever they decide to call his number again.

After Charles and Jones, the players behind them at running back are all up for discussion.  I could see the team carrying zero, one or two fullbacks.  In this scenario I have the team holding onto Castille over Cox, but they could easily swap Williams for Castille.  Both Moore and Williams are big enough to handle fullback in a pinch, but I do believe that Castille will make the final cut as the team’s sole fullback.

McCluster’s versatility could, though it’s unlikely, allow Todd Haley to only carry three true running backs in Charles, Jones and Moore (who now seems like a lock).

The biggest reach at this point might be Horne as the seventh wide receiver.  He has shown some real potential early on in camp and might make Quinten Lawrence expendable, but for now I have both making the roster.

Some would argue that Banks over O’Connell is a bigger reach, but the Chiefs have gone out of their way to bring him to Kansas City twice and all he has done is impress on the field.  I understand that O’Connell was a draft pick, but he just hasn’t shown enough to stick around much longer and after all, Haley keeps saying it doesn’t matter where a player came from.

Even though the starting five offensive linemen are all but set (Albert-Waters-Wiegmann-Lilja-O’Callaghan) the depth behind them is a mixed bag.  Do they hold onto more than one project (Brown) by giving Richardson or Harris a chance or go with the more experienced Ndukwe?

The defensive line and linebackers remain unchanged and barring an injury should stay that way for the immediate future unless someone jumps over a guy like Lokey.

The final spot in the defensive backfield is absolutely up for grabs.  With so many guys that have the ability to swing between S and CB (Leggett, Daniels, Washington), the Chiefs can go with an unusual number at either position similar to what McCluster provides at WR/RB.

In my mind, Daniels and Langford are fighting for that final spot with Daniels currently getting the nod.  Langford spent time with the first team defense before Berry signed and easily could be ahead of Daniels.

With so much happening every day in St. Joseph, this list will no doubt change plenty over the next week.

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