Last season, the Chiefs had some things they needed to work on. Like many teams, those things were addressed in the off-season.

And just like last season, Kansas City had some areas that were in clear need of improvement: pass rush, pass defense, and pass-catching.

After the Tyreek Hill trade, we knew the Chiefs would for sure prioritize another receiving option in the draft. However, we did not think it would be the last of the three in regard to priorities.

The Chiefs took a corner with their first pick in the first round and a pass rusher with their second. Corner, you could argue, was their biggest need. However, you could also argue that with the other needs.

The cornerback room needed more size and skill. Honestly, they just needed more players at the position, as when the season ended they had just two corners on the roster.

In this draft, the Chiefs took some great defensive players, and after the draft, they made some moves. With some of these moves, the Chiefs broke a trend in the cornerback room. They did something that did not happen once last year.

Chiefs get taller corners compared to last year’s roster

Last season, the Chiefs did not have a single corner that was six foot two or taller. Now, that isn’t necessarily bad or good. However, it is known that when teams have bigger corners they will play press-man defense a lot more often.

Going into next year, the Chiefs already have three guys breaking that trend:

Joshua Williams, Chiefs’ fourth-round pick from Fayetteville State (6-foot-3)

At Fayetteville State, Williams played bad competition, so there are a lot of questions about how he will play against professionals. He doe need to fine-tune his skills a bit because the speed isn’t there as much as in other corners. However, he has the potential to grow as a press-man defensive back with his tangibles.

Jaylen Watson, Chiefs’ seventh-round pick from Washington State (6-foot-3)

Watson’s size makes him an inevitable press-coverage defender. However, he will need to work on his speed a bit to hang with the best. Watson isn’t lean at all, but a bit bulky and not as quick as most cornerbacks, but can play in press coverage.

Lonnie Johnson Jr., acquired from Texans via trade (6-foot-2)

Lonnie Johnson has been in the NFL for more than a few years now and has been somewhat successful. He hasn’t been the best, but he is a serviceable cornerback, who can also play press-man coverage.

The Chiefs love playing in a press coverage defense with their cornerbacks. This is evidenced by the fact that they ran press man at the seventh-highest rate in 2021, per Sports Info Solutions. Per Pro Football Focus, KC’s top-3 corners in 2021 were in man coverage for at least 34% of their snaps, landing all three in the top-20 among corners with at least 381 pass coverage snaps. New Orleans, Denver, Miami, and Dallas were the only other teams with three corners in the top-20.

Size doesn’t always matter, but it certainly matters for the Chiefs when it comes to what they want to do in the secondary. And now, they have that size, so it’s plausible to think they’ll run even more press man in 2022 and beyond.

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