Dabei seit: 12. Jul 2018
Andy Reid has been coming to training camp with the Kansas City Chiefs long enough to know his way around Missouri Western State University Malik Hooker Jersey , whether it's finding the best route to the two outdoor practice fields or the quickest way to the dining hall.Sometimes the Chiefs' coach forgets that this experience is new for a whole bunch of people.Most of them reside on his rebuilt defense.After the Chiefs put together one of the worst seasons in franchise history on that side of the ball, yet still reached the AFC championship game thanks to their record-setting offense, Reid made the painful decision to part ways with longtime friend and coordinator Bob Sutton.In his place came Steve Spagnuolo, and that was just the start of the changes.Spagnuolo immediately decided to convert the Chiefs from a 3-4 scheme to a 4-3 defense, then watched as general manager Brett Veach began finding players to fill it out. They traded for defensive end Frank Clark and signed him to a $104 million, five-year extension, and added free agent safety Tyrann Mathieu on a $42 million, three-year deal to become the quarterback of their secondary.They parted with longtime stalwarts Justin Houston, Eric Berry and Dee Ford, and used the savings on defensive ends Alex Okafor and Emmanuel Ogbah, linebacker Damien Wilson and cornerback Bashaud Breeland.It was an unprecedented overhaul for a team that came within a hair of playing in the Super Bowl."In my mind we're all coming up for our seventh camp and then I have to keep reminding myself that these guys don't even know how to get up to the practice field," Reid said. "There's some nice leadership qualities from some of those players that were added, and intensity. I've been looking forward to a competitive camp up here. It should be pretty exciting."That competition already has been on display.Clark spent the first padded practice Monday getting into the face of left tackle Mitchell Schwartz during one-on-one drills. Then, he stood before a bank of television cameras and proudly proclaimed that the "defense won the day," no doubt igniting a fire under that high-powered offense."Spags is a legendary coach," Clark said. "You know Peyton Manning Jersey , he came in and he threw everything at us in the spring. He put the whole script out there and put it into our hands as players, and to really invest our time learning this playbook. You look down at his tree of him coaching with Coach Reid, and him coaching in Philly, and him coaching the Giants' defense — he's just a great coach."Clark should know something about great defenses, too. The Chiefs acquired him from Seattle, where he was part of coach Pete Carroll's highly regarded "Legion of Boom."Yet the differences between the Chiefs' defense last season and this season extend far beyond the coaching staff, the scheme and the personnel, though they could have as many as seven new starters.There is also a different personality.The Chiefs played the quintessential bend-but-don't-break style last season, giving up huge yardage before buckling down. That softness came back to haunt them in the AFC title game, when Tom Brady led the Patriots downfield on the first possession of overtime for the winning score.The bunch that has taken the practice fields at Missouri Western this week already have shown more energy, more speed and more attack. There were several big hits during practice Tuesday, including on a play in which star wide receiver Tyreek Hill had to leave with a bruised quad muscle."I love training camp. I always have, right from the beginning when I was with Andy and we used to go to Lehigh University (with) Philadelphia," Spagnuolo said after Tuesday's practice. "We're getting closer to football. It's not all the way there because we can't tackle."That won't happen until the Chiefs play their preseason opener Aug. 10 against the Bengals.Then they'll begin to know whether their defensive overhaul has paid off."All I do is focus on them getting better each day," Spagnuolo said. "Now, that's a cliche Darius Leonard Jersey , right? But it's real. I mean, if we don't do that or buy into it and embrace it, all we'll do is go back."NOTES: Hill walked off the field before riding in a cart to the locker rooms. The Chiefs do not believe his injury is serious. ... RT Mitchell Schwartz (back) did not practice Tuesday. Cam Erving took his place with the starters. ... Breeland (lacerated thumb) was back at practice. ... The Chiefs practice again Wednesday before their first day off of training camp. This time, it's Kirk Cousins vs. Carson Wentz.The quarterbacks and the stakes will be different when the Philadelphia Eagles (2-2) host the Minnesota Vikings (1-2-1) in a rematch of the NFC championship game Sunday.Nick Foles led the Eagles to a 38-7 win over Case Keenum and the Vikings last January. The Super Bowl MVP went back to the bench after Wentz returned from knee surgery in Week 3. Keenum went to Denver because the Vikings gave Cousins a fully guaranteed $84 million contract to be the face of their franchise.Neither team is playing at a championship level right now and both are desperate for a win."They're a great team, record aside," Wentz said. "We know we'll get their best, obviously with the way it ended last year."Cousins had been successful against the Eagles in seven starts for Washington. He had thrown for 2,122 yards with 16 touchdowns and five interceptions while going 4-3 in those games."It's a great environment, a great place to play an NFL football game on a Sunday afternoon. Great crowd," Cousins said. "I've had my fair share of battles there. Some have come out victorious, some have come out as the loser. It will be a great test for us."Some things to watch between the Vikings and Eagles:FLIP'S FAMILIARITYVikings offensive coordinator John DeFilippo was Philadelphia's quarterbacks coach the past two seasons. He's quite familiar with Wentz and coach Doug Pederson's system. The Eagles already beat former offensive coordinator Frank Reich and the Colts in Week 3."The same as going against Frank, some of the terminology, some of the calls, maybe hand signals, whatever it may be that he knows," Pederson said. "Listen Malik Hooker Jersey White , he's a smart guy, but he's also preparing his team to get ready to play. I think that's where his focus is right now this week."We're seeing some of the same things from their offense that we do, and so it's good for our defense to see. We're aware of it. It's a home game, so we can cut down on a lot of the signals, a lot of the verbiage, things like that at the line, and just try to go play."GETTING DEFENSIVEBoth teams are struggling on defense. The Vikings had the No. 1 defense a year ago. They're 21st this season. The Eagles were fourth last year. Now they're 10th and the secondary has been shredded by Ryan Fitzpatrick and Marcus Mariota in two road losses.The Vikings are missing three-time Pro Bowl defensive end Everson Griffen. The Eagles lost safety Rodney McLeod.NO BALANCEThe Vikings are last in the NFL in rushing and Dalvin Cook leads the team with only 98 yards while averaging just 2.7 per carry. The Eagles are first in run defense but poor against the pass. So expect Cousins to throw a ton. Or not."It's important for us to have balance," Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said. "It keeps the defensive line from pinning their ears back all the time. I think it helps the football team overall. We just have to do a better job."NO BALANCE IIThe Eagles had success running the ball in an overtime loss at Tennessee, gaining 109 yards on 20 carries from backs Jay Ajayi and Wendell Smallwood. But Pederson called 74 percent pass plays."We try to be as balanced as we can be and we're going to play the game that we think needs to be played, and some of it is dictated during the course of the game," offensive coordinator Mike Groh said. "Coach is as patient a play caller as there is in the running game in this league and really doesn't deviate from it. ... A run call is never very far from the tip of his finger. He's always thinking about it and conversing with the staff during the course of the game."DYNAMIC DUOVikings receivers Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs have been unstoppable. Diggs leads the team with three touchdowns and is averaging 11.5 yards per reception. Thielen has 40 catches and is the only player in the league with 100 yards receiving in every game this season. They're going against a pair of cornerbacks, Jalen Mills and Ronald Darby, who've struggled.
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