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Chiefs RB Kareem Hunt Ready to Follow Up 2017 Looking to Improve This Season

Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt amassed more yards from scrimmage in his professional debut than any player in NFL history, landed on the cover of Sports Illustrated a few weeks later and finished the season as just the sixth rookie in league history to earn the rushing title, Matt McMullen of reports.

It was a remarkable season for any player – let alone a rookie – and now a year later, Hunt can put aside the worries associated with a young player trying to break into the league and focus on improving his craft.

“You don’t have to stress about what team you’re going to and deal with interviews like 12 times a day (this time around),” said Hunt, recalling the process leading up to the draft last offseason. “Now, you just have to go out there and play football and try to make yourself better than you were last year.”

There’s a certain challenge associated with improving on such a strong initial season in the league, though it’s not uncharted territory. In fact, three of the five previous players to lead the NFL in rushing as rookies – Edgerrin James, Eric Dickerson and Earl Campbell – went on to defend their rushing crown the following year.

But Hunt’s attention wasn’t just on running the ball as Organized Team Activities (OTAs) began last week.

“I’m just working on my game all around,” said Hunt following OTAs on Thursday. “(One thing I’m doing is) I’m catching the ball more and running a lot more routes.”

Hunt is no stranger to catching the ball, hauling in 53 receptions for 455 yards last season, though it has been a point of emphasis as he looks to become a better comprehensive offensive player heading into his sophomore season.

“I like it. It gives me the opportunity to get the ball in open space and make people miss,” Hunt said. “The toughest part is just making the play – being able to lock in on the ball – and to make something happen after.”

Chiefs OL Laurent Duvernay-Tardif Graduates with a Medical Doctorate

The Chiefs officially have another doctor in the house as starting right offensive guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif graduated Tuesday morning from McGill University in Montreal with a medical doctorate according to Herbie Teope of

“This is it!” Duvernay-Tardif tweeted in excitement. “Today I become a doctor!” The Chiefs selected Duvernay-Tardif in the sixth round of the 2014 NFL Draft with a full understanding he was in his third year of medical school. And with the full backing of the Chiefs’ organization over the years, he mastered the art of multitasking the demands of football and returning to Canada during the offseason months to continue his medical studies.

The now 27-year-old clearly excelled at both as he earned a starting job on the O-line and signed a five-year, $41 million contract extension with the Chiefs in 2017. Eight years after beginning the journey in medical school, the 27-year-old now has life after football secured as a medical doctor.

Raiders Coach Jon Gruden Bragging About Inking Chiefs All-Time Leader in Tackles Derrick Johnson

In a conference call with Raiders season-ticket members, Jon Gruden was asked about the need to improve the middle of the defense.

That’s when Gruden talked about his love of stealing players from the Chiefs, and brought up at least one player whom Kansas City fans still lament getting away, Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star reports.

“Well, we feel like we have solidified the middle of our defense big time,” Gruden said. “We added Derrick Johnson, the all-time leading tackler in Kansas City Chief history. He started every game for them last year, they were the division champions.”

“You throw out all the records whenever these teams play. There’s a lot of bad blood in the AFC West. But all we can control is ourselves. We’re not even going to worry about who are the favorites. We’re going to worry about the Oakland Raiders and bringing it every single week.”

Video: Big Expectations in 2018 for QB Pat Mahomes in KC

On CBS Sports HQ, senior NFL writer Will Brinson joins Casey Keirnan to discuss his expectations for Patrick Mahomes in his second season.

Chiefs Earn an ‘C+’ for Their Draft According to ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr.

The draft grades from ‘Draft Guru’ Mel Kiper Jr. are out, and one team that got an average grade is that of the Chiefs, who according to Kiper got an ‘C+’ for their collection of players over the two days.

Here’s what he had to say:

The job requirement is to give a grade now. What the Chiefs’ 2018 draft grade ultimately becomes is really all about what a guy who has thrown a whopping 35 NFL passes becomes. Then-GM John Dorsey (now in Cleveland) traded up to get Patrick Mahomes. Because of that, Kansas City didn’t have a first-round pick this year. In short: Mahomes now has the starting job with Alex Smith in Washington — it needs to work out.

Beyond that, the Chiefs did find a couple useful pieces. The Chiefs regressed on defense last year — particularly up front — and their Day 2 picks reflected that. Breeland Speaks (pick 46), Derrick Nnadi (75) and Dorian O’Daniel (100) all have ability, and Nnadi and Speaks aren’t far from plenty of snaps based on the current depth chart. Armani Watts (124) and Tremon Smith (196) are potential insurance in the secondary.

The word is sixth-rounder Kahlil McKenzie is going to flip from defensive tackle to guard. Stranger things have happened. The Chiefs are arguably the most unpredictable team of 2018. Your move, Mahomes.

Round/Pick Name Pos College
2/46 Breeland Speaks DE OLE MISS
3/75 Derrick Nnadi DT FLORIDA STATE
3/100 Dorian O’Daniel OLB CLEMSON
4/124 Armani Watts S TEXAS A&M
6/196 Tremon Smith CB CENTRAL ARKANSAS
6/198 Kahlil McKenzie DT TENNESSEE

Chiefs Game Against the Rams in Mexico City to Be November 19th

The Chiefs and the rest of the slate for the 2018 NFL season will be released in a televised program on Thursday night, but late on Wednesday it was announced that the Chiefs/Rams game in Mexico City will be on November 19th.

Chiefs Coach Andy Reid Vague on the Health of RB Spencer Ware

Chiefs head coach Andy Reid was vague when asked about the health of running back Spencer Ware on Monday according to Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star.

Reid first stated that he expected Ware to be ready for training camp but then backtracked, stating, “You never know”. He added that the 26-year-old Ware participating in any football activities before the start of training camp would be a surprise. Ware tore both his PCL and LCL late in the preseason last summer and missed the entire 2017 season, paving the way for rookie Kareem Hunt to literally run away with the starting job.

When Ware does return, he will be battling for a backup role with veteran Charcandrick West and free agent signees Damien Williams and Kerwyn Williams. Ware likely has the most talent of that group but the additional signings hint at concern over Ware’s health and recovery.

Chiefs Promote Special Teams Coach Dave Toub to Assistant Head Coach

Chiefs coach Andy Reid has promoted special teams coach Dave Toub to assistant head coach, Terez Paylof of the Kansas City Star reports.

Toub, 55, will retain his special teams duties.

“Dave has had the opportunity to work with our team on both sides of the football, on the field, and in the classroom,” Reid said in a statement. “His leadership qualities have entrusted me to promote him to assistant head coach.”

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