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Sack Attack: What Will the Chiefs Do About Their Pass Rush?

With Travis Kelce getting a reworked contract that ends up in the Chiefs owing him more money, the Chiefs kind of just pushed themselves away from the prospect of Robert Quinn, so what now? What will the Chiefs do in terms of bolstering their (at least for the moment) weak pass rush? It's getting ever closer to the beginning of the season, and I don't think the Chiefs should wait until it's 2-3 games in to sign someone. This division will be extremely competitive this year, and it's in the Chiefs' best interest to figure this out in preseason. In my opinion, they have two options.

The first option, and one I don't necessarily prefer, is to wait and see if George Karlaftis or Mike Danna develop into serviceable, or even good pass rushers. George Karlaftis was working closely with Frank Clark on tips and tricks to get off blocks at the end of today's training camp session, so that's a good sign. Will the preseason though be enough time for either one of these guys to hone their skill to where they'll be able to win snaps against tackles Week 1 regularly? My answer is no. Karlaftis is a bull-rusher, and while that is feasible against average to decent offensive linemen, those with good footwork and the ability to hold a block will protect well against a straight bull rush with no finesse to it. Getting off a block is key to any good pass rush, and unless Karlaftis or Danna (who is smaller than Karlaftis and more quick, but still has much to work on) can incorporate a couple good moves and not completely rely on brute strength they won't get to that next level. It will all depend on how this training camp goes, and while Karlaftis is off to a good start, he's still a rookie with zero NFL experience. The game takes a jump from college to NFL, and Karlaftis at least will have to be ready for that when most (key word: MOST) rookies aren't quite ready.

The second, and in my opinion more preferable option, is to sign an at least rotational veteran D-end to the team. As I am typing this, the Chiefs are visiting with Carlos Dunlap, who has had a great career but is entering his twilight. Dunlap can provide what Terrell Suggs provided when he was signed the year the Chiefs won the Super Bowl, and that is a veteran presence that can lead a young defense to development and greatness. He can also be a body that will draw attention due to his great career, which opens up guys like Chris Jones or Frank Clark to run free. If the Chiefs don't sign Dunlap, there are other options, but the list is ever thinning. Jason Pierre-Paul, Carl Nassib, and others are still on the market, but as the season gets closer those names will be picked up, and quickly. They really can't waste a whole lot more time if that is their plan of action.

Overall, after one day of training camp I think the Chiefs can gauge what they need to do. You've had OTAs, you've had rookie camp, and now you have training camp. It's time to act, otherwise opportunities may be missed. Yes cap space is low, but it's manageable if you wanted to go out and get a guy that can at least be rotational which is really all the Chiefs need. If they think they can get that between now and when the season starts with the roster they have currently, I have my doubts.

Burn Notice: 9/10 My heart warms to the sights and sounds of a new football season...

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