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What Spagnuolo has seen from 4 Kansas Metropolis Chiefs rookies — together with this latest riser

What Spagnuolo has seen from 4 Kansas Metropolis Chiefs rookies — together with this latest riser

In the previous few days at Kansas City Chiefs coaching camp, seventh-round choose Jaylen Watson has changed fourth-round choice Joshua Williams as one of many staff’s starters at cornerback.

That’s all a part of a plan, defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo says, to maintain gamers pushed.

“A bit of little bit of difficult every man. No one is handed over a spot, proper?” Spagnuolo mentioned Thursday. “So if you get a bit bit snug, that’s not factor on this enterprise. So we do this simply to ensure that they’re all conscious that nothing’s received proper now.”

The truth that two lower-round picks have rotated first-team snaps is a part of a larger theme within the Chiefs’ secondary.

Thus far, 4 guys specifically have stood out, with every of them making a case to be early contributors in 2022.

The newest riser is Watson, a 6-foot-2 defensive again chosen with the 243rd select of Washington State. Spagnuolo complimented him for “two actually good practices” in a row, which included the staff going by means of drills on the indoor facility Wednesday.

“The primary couple of snaps there, I assumed he did a very nice job protection. He’s come alongside,” Spagnuolo mentioned. “He was type of a sluggish mover early. I believe he’s type of determining that that doesn’t actually work at this degree. So that you’ve received to follow all the pieces quick.”

Williams, in the meantime, was one of many largest tales of coaching camp’s first week. The 6-foot-3 cornerback, who took an unlikely path to pro football from Division II Fayetteville State, has been lauded for his fast studying and skill to play press protection on the line of scrimmage.

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“He’s actually purchased into the method we use. It’s not snug for everyone, however he has purchased into it,” Spagnuolo mentioned. “He’s making an attempt to do issues precisely the way in which we’ve requested him. If he retains doing that, I believe he’ll get higher and higher.”

The Chiefs’ high two rookies within the secondary are also performing to expectations to date.

That features first-round choose Trent McDuffie, who has taken all first-team reps in camp after the Chiefs traded up to select him 21st in April’s draft. Spagnuolo described McDuffie’s effort up thus far as “excellent.”

“Now we’ll in all probability transfer him round a bit bit too, however we have to get him settled in a spot ultimately,” Spagnuolo mentioned. “I believe he’s competed rather well with a bunch of actually good veteran wideouts now we have. The factor I like about Trent is was when it hasn’t gone nice for him, he’s not a type of guys that sticks his head within the sand. He bounces proper again up. That’s high quality.”

Spagnuolo additionally likes what he has in second-rounder Bryan Cook dinner, calling the 6-foot-1 security out of Cincinnati “ soccer participant.”

“He picks up issues shortly, desires to know all the pieces. He’s a sponge. He’s a lot like George (Karlaftis, rookie defensive end). He desires to know the entire thing,” Spagnuolo mentioned. “It appears fairly pure to him proper now. Now, we’ll see what we get in the true sport, however that half I like.”

The Chiefs aren’t entire of their secondary but. Watson and Williams have been rotating on the beginning spot that can most certainly be occupied by fourth-year professional Rashad Fenton, who’s recovering from shoulder surgical procedure; barring a setback, he may very well be projected to rejoin practices within the subsequent few weeks.

Coach Andy Reid mentioned Wednesday he couldn’t give an actual timetable for Fenton’s return however reported that the cornerback was progressing. Spagnuolo envisioned Fenton stepping proper again in to compete for his spot when absolutely recuperated.

“I imply, he’s performed some good soccer for us, particularly on the surface. We simply need to get him wholesome and get him again there,” Spagnuolo mentioned. “I’m anxious to get again on the market. I’m wanting ahead to it.”

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With Fenton sidelined, Spagnuolo will proceed to get appears at Watson and Williams, who appear on monitor towards serving to the Chiefs as first-year gamers.

The purpose, although, will probably be to maintain them motivated whereas competing for a spot.

“Nothing is carved in stone proper now,” Spagnuolo mentioned, “by way of who’s enjoying the place.”

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