On yet another busy day at One Arrowhead Drive, the Kansas City Chiefs introduced their new quarterback Alex Smith to the press and announced two more free agent signings, defensive end Mike DeVito and wide receiver Donnie Avery.
Without doubt, however, the big news coming out of the press conference at Arrowhead was the head coach dispelling any misunderstandings about who the #1 guy is in KC. Reid left no doubt that Smith is at the top of the depth chart despite the signing of former Mizzou legend QB Chase Daniel as a free agent on Tuesday.
“Every position we try to bring competition because that brings out the greatness in a player, but Alex is a starting quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs” said Reid.
Reid, as you would expect, raved about Smith, on Wednesday. He said he checked more than once on Smith’s availability in a trade when he was head coach of the Eagles. Smith should be a perfect fit for Reid’s version of the West Coast offense.
The feeling is mutual. Smith said he was fired up for the trade to happen because he wants to play for Reid.
Judging by the press conference, it appears Smith is ready, willing, and able to begin the quest for winning the 2013 AFC West title and beyond.
The other news of the day concerns two more free agent signings, that maybe won’t set the social media world on fire (like the Denver Broncos signing of WR Wes Welker Wednesday), but both DeVito and Avery are the kinds of additions to the roster that can pay big dividends.
DeVito, 28, will replace departed defensive end, Glenn Dorsey, who signed a contract with the 49ers late Wednesday. He is one of those hard-nosed, blue collar types that become fan favorites in Kansas City. He is also one of the players that is a coach’s favorite because he is rarely in the wrong position to make a play and has a non-stop motor. In short, he does all the things that may not show up on the stat sheet for him, but will definitely make others around him better.
Avery, 28, was on track to be one of the brighter stars at WR with the St. Louis Rams before blowing out his knee and missing the 2010 season. Avery’s game was based on upfield speed and stretching defenses. He is now entering his third season since his injury and should be as healed as he is going to be. With Dwayne Bowe on the other side of the field, Avery should be capable of catching 60+ passes from Smith with, hopefully, a 15-yard per catch average. Not Pro Bowl numbers to be sure, but a heck of a lot better than anything the Chiefs have gotten from their #2 receiver in years.
Daniel's selection has drawn a few sarcastic barbs from non-Mizzou fans because the fifth-year pro has sat on the bench his entire career behind Drew Brees in New Orleans. Some like to point out that Daniel has attempted only nine passes in his career, yet signed a $9 million contract with the Chiefs – that’s $1 million per pass attempt.
However, Daniel has been sitting in a meeting room with Brees every day of his career, picking the brain of arguably one of the top-4 quarterbacks in the league. He has also sat with head coach Sean Payton, one of the great offensive minds in the league for all but last season when Payton was suspended for “Bountygate”. Chiefs fans should ignore the nine pass attempts and think about what Daniel has learned about playing quarterback during that time.
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