Following Chiefs practice today in Kansas City, Todd Haley met with the media. Here are the highlights:
On Chris Chambers:
“Chris Chambers is a guy that was obviously a high [draft] pick coming out – somebody that I did a lot of research on when he was coming out and someone I kept an eye on. He came available and again, in our quest to improve our team at every avenue we felt like he could potentially help us. We had experience playing against him and preparing for him so we had a bunch of different opinions on him and felt good about getting him in here.”
He’s not a real fast guy, so what does he give you that you didn’t have?
“His speed’s pretty good, maybe better than you give him credit for. He was a fast guy coming out and that was something that for sure we wanted to look at and watched a lot of tape on. He was a vertical threat for San Diego, so I do think he gives us some speed and vertical explosion. He’s always been a great leaper and explosive to the football, a big strong guy at 215 pounds. I think he adds a little to the mix.”
How has Dwayne Bowe continued to progress from earlier in the year and training camp?
“I think Dwayne’s somebody that I’ve been on probably as much or more as anybody and he has fought through and continued to improve. You haven’t seen a great translation on the field and the games yet but I don’t think there is any doubt that Dwayne has improved and he is improving. As long as he continues to do the things he’s doing you should continue to see improvement there. I think as long as he’s doing that he has a chance to reach his potential as a player.”
Has he been a little more of a project than you thought he might be?
“Again, receivers – and I’ve had a lot of experience with them – I think one of the first things I said to Dwayne was don’t give me your numbers. If a receiver’s on a losing team and has a 1,000 yards it really doesn’t count in my mind the same as a receiver who is on a .500 or above team and has numbers, because I think you’re behind and [the QB is] throwing all the time and some of those can be misleading. I think that’s something I made clear and that he had a long way to go. But again, I think he’s taking to the coaching and he’s responding and he’s buying-in and doing all the things we’re asking of him and we’re seeing clear improvement on a day-to-day basis. Now, I think it’s important that it translates into games.”
How do you feel about the safety position with the loss of Page?
“It’s an area of concern for us. We’ve been cross-training some of those corners to be alert in an emergency situation if we were to have something happen. But it’s an area of concern right now and is tenuous to say the least as we go forward this week.”
Leggett said he played some at that position in college.
“That’s one of the guys who has been getting a lot of work at safety. At show-team he was there way back in training camp. He’s got a bunch of reps and has been trained back there through the play-book, now being out there and actually running reps is a little bit different. I think I feel like at least we’re ahead of the curve with him.”
What about Jamaal Charles starting? He’s about the same size as Chris Johnson and he lit up the Jags last week.
“Chris Johnson is a special back but there are some similarities. I know Coach Carthon whenever he has guys who are similar in stature he puts a tape together and did way before this game for Jamaal to watch. We do that for receivers and quarterbacks, whoever. If you’re built like someone else or have a similar skill-set that’s a pretty good guy to watch. I also know that Mo had him watching Maurice Jones-Drew also for this week, too, just to get him ready for show-team if nothing else. I think Jamaal is his own person and he’s got a great opportunity here and I know he’s excited about it. He had a good day today and hopefully he’ll grab this opportunity by the horns, pardon the pun.”
Is Derrick Johnson continuing to do the things you want him to do to get better?
“Yeah, I have no problem with how Derrick is preparing or playing. I have no problem at all with Derrick and I think he is continuing to get himself ready so when a bigger opportunity presents itself he’s ready for that. Right now, Demorrio Williams is not a reason why we’re where we’re at. Now, everybody is, but he’s played as good a football as anybody on this team.”