On Sunday, the Cleveland Browns are back at home to take on the Kansas City Chiefs. To help preview a few topics from the Chiefs’ perspective, we reached out to Pete Sweeney from Arrowhead Pride and exchanged five questions with him. Enjoy!
Chris: “John Dorsey is now the GM of the Browns -- tell us what Chiefs fans thought about his time in Kansas City.”
Pete: “The feeling I get from Kansas City Chiefs fans on John Dorsey is twofold. First, they are thankful that he completely turned the team around. From 2012 to 2013, Dorsey led the greatest single-season turnaround in Chiefs franchise history—from two wins to 11 wins. Second—while they are thankful—I also think there are Chiefs fans who agreed with the team’s decision to let him go. The leading issues that have emerged through the media are cap issues, which were apparent, and communication issues. Another aspect of this is that Andy Reid has been adamant in pushing the Chiefs’ new general manager, Brett Veach, as the person responsible for Patrick Mahomes, which I have always found to be a direct insult to Dorsey, who liked Mahomes, too, and was the one to orchestrate the draft-night trade to get him to Kansas City. Veach was the first scout on him, and Dorsey, the sitting general manager, agreed and got the deal done. I have found that because of Reid’s words, most Chiefs fans do credit Veach for Mahomes being a Chief, which I have always found somewhat bothersome. Dorsey was heavily involved and deserves much of the credit, as well.
Long story short, the majority of fans were thankful but ready to move on. I’m telling you that you’re in good hands.”
Chris: “I regretted seeing Mitchell Schwartz ever leave the Browns, and from what I’ve heard, he has been damn good since joining the Chiefs too a few years ago. Is there a weak spot on Kansas City’s offensive line?”
Pete: “Mitchell Schwartz has been outstanding for the Kansas City Chiefs.
But yes. If there were any spots, it’s center and right guard, positions in which the current starters in Austin Reiter and Andrew Wylie, respectively, have two starts each. While the Chiefs backups fared better than I thought they would against the Denver Broncos, those interior positions along the line are still vulnerable.”
Chris: “The Chiefs’ defense has had some issues this year. Granted, their offense is so good that it’s difficult to maintain pace in a shootout, but let’s ‘hypothetically’ say that Kansas City’s offense has some hiccups this Sunday. What are the concerning areas on Kansas City’s defense?”
Pete: “The Chiefs were already shaky against the run, and this week, I anticipate Anthony Hitchens to be out of the lineup or on some sort of pain toleration snap count as he deals with a rib contusion. Rookie linebacker Ben Niemann, who made the team thanks to raw talent in training camp, could get his first real look on the inside. The pass defense has been better than we expected, but you can usually pencil in 100 yards for your best receiver—in this case Jarvis Landry—against Kansas City. The question for Cleveland will be the production the secondary receivers can provide. The 31-year-old Ron Parker isn’t coming off the greatest week against Denver, so I’d wonder if the Browns try to exploit him.”
Chris: “Tell us about one player on offense and on defense who Browns fans might not be aware of, but who have played a nice role for Kansas City in 2018.”
Pete: “Offense: Running back Spencer Ware is the former starter for Kansas City from back in 2016, before Kareem Hunt’s emergence. Now he’s the backup, but he is still worth watching when he enters the game. He doesn’t touch the ball often (he has only 18 rushes this season), but when he does, he is averaging 5.9 yards per attempt. He also has nine receptions for 89 yards on the season.
Defense: Rookie Breeland Speaks (ROLB) has had an opportunity to start the past couple of weeks due to a hamstring injury keeping Justin Houston out. Speaks registered his first full sack against the Broncos last week is finally hitting his stride as a pass rusher. Speaks is transitioning from the line to outside linebacker this season. He was the Chiefs’ top pick (coming in the second round because of the trade-up for Mahomes the previous year).”
Chris: “Has anyone from the Chiefs’ 2018 draft class made an impact? Also, a side note: Can we hate you just for ever having an affiliation with Dwayne Bowe (we still have terrors about his “time” with the Browns two years ago)?”
Pete: “The hate is fine—we’ll take it! When the Browns signed Bowe, I think we all had an idea from his final days in Kansas City at how it might go. Sorry about that.
From the draft class, it’s the aforementioned Speaks and Niemann, especially this week. Inside linebacker Dorian O’Daniel, who can track rushers and receivers really well and provide the big, clean hit when necessary, looks like he will see more time. Kick returner Tremon Smith is getting an opportunity due to injury as of late. Some on the team believe he has a similar burst to that of Tyreek Hill.”
Thanks again to Pete for taking the time to answer my questions.