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Tribal Warfare 07-26-2013 07:24 PM

Teicher:On first play at camp, Chiefs show their new look
 
On first play at camp, Chiefs show their new look
By ADAM TEICHER
The Kansas City Star
Andy Reid delivered a not-so-subtle message Friday with the first play at Chiefs training camp. He had quarterback Alex Smith heave a pass deep down the middle that was hauled in for a touchdown by wide receiver Dexter McCluster.

The play served notice that after two seasons with a dormant passing attack, the Chiefs intend to revive it in a big way.

“I wasn’t ready for that,” Smith said. “I came up and I got a good look for it. Crowd pleaser.”

Much more needs to happen before the passing game can be called successful. But the intent is obviously there. Smith completed another deep pass to McCluster a few plays later.

As much as Reid enjoyed the big plays, he liked the consistency of the passing game. Smith, who completed 70 percent of his passes for the 49ers last season, went several plays into practice before throwing his first incompletion.

“There weren’t a lot of balls on the ground, and it looked like the defense had people covered,” Reid said. “They were in position.”

The trade for Smith was the biggest of the offseason moves aimed at revitalizing a sluggish offense. Smith, the first pick in the 2005 draft and San Francisco’s long-time starter, is used to such pressure.

“I’m much better equipped to handle it now,” Smith said. “When you’re a young guy and coming in and playing early, I dwelled on (negative things) too much. I let it affect my play too much. I tried to please everybody.

“I’m going to play my game. I’m going to try to work as hard as I can to get as good as I can and try to reach my potential and win a bunch of games. That’s the goal. I’m not worried about a bunch of other things.”

Smith received another peek at the expectations waiting for him at the end of practice, when a fan called to him asking Smith to be the Chiefs’ savior.

“That’s a strong word,” Smith said. “That’s a great example. When I was younger, I would have taken that literally. I tried to make every single throw and I tried to prove to everybody on every single play that, yeah, I could do this.”

That McCluster was on the receiving end of Smith’s long passes was another bonus for the Chiefs. They practiced without their most accomplished receiver, Dwayne Bowe, who is on the non-football injury list with a viral condition.

Bowe may return to practice as soon as Saturday. But no matter when he plays, the Chiefs are still in search of a consistent threat to go along with him. The diminutive McCluster has long tantalized the Chiefs with his big-play ability, but he has delivered precious few such plays since arriving as a rookie in 2010.

He bounced from receiver to running back and again to receiver, never seeming to find a comfortable spot. While it’s far too early to call him a changed player in Reid’s offense, it’s a start.

“It’s always good to start a first practice … with a big one,” McCluster said. “I’m happy I held on to the ball.”

Reid’s arrival could rescue McCluster’s career, which stalled last season under coach Romeo Crennel. Reid, then coaching the Philadelphia Eagles, was intrigued by McCluster when he was available in the 2010 draft.

The Chiefs got to him first, but Reid began making plans for McCluster shortly after arriving in Kansas City in January.

“He gives you a little flexibility,” Reid said. “You can move him around a Iittle. We’ll use him here and there.”

During offseason practice and again on Friday, McCluster lined up in a variety of spots.

“I don’t know where he couldn’t line up, to be honest, as far as skill positions go,” Smith said. “He’s got that many tools in the belt.”

Another offensive player the Chiefs are counting on is rookie running back Knile Davis. The Chiefs hope he can be turned into a kickoff return specialist, even though he never returned a kick during a game in college at Arkansas.

That process got off to a rough start Friday when Davis, who was a frequent fumbler in college, dropped a kickoff.

“We’ll get that fixed,” Reid said.

cdcox 07-26-2013 07:32 PM

McCluster training camp phenom.

cdcox 07-26-2013 07:33 PM

Knile "I'll never fumble again" Davis?

Yep, it's football season.

beach tribe 07-26-2013 07:34 PM

Regardless of how you feel about the trade or Alex Smith in general, who here wouldnt LOVE it if Ried turned him into beast.
I would say sweet dick Willie, but he was "Fully On board" with Cassel after the 10' Seattle game.

Marcellus 07-26-2013 07:34 PM

Quote:

He had quarterback Alex Smith heave a pass deep down the middle that was hauled in for a touchdown by wide receiver Dexter McCluster.
No other sentence has caused more anger and frustration in the history of CP.

LMAO

Cannibal 07-26-2013 07:35 PM

McCluster will see some reverses and screens coming his way this year.

Chiefs Pantalones 07-26-2013 07:35 PM

Please let us win a playoff game this year. I know I should just be asking for three wins (baby steps) but wow, that'd be a nice gift.

scott free 07-26-2013 07:40 PM

MCCLUSTER MCLUSTER HE'S OUR MAN IF HE CANT DO IT NO ONE CAN!11

keg in kc 07-26-2013 07:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Marcellus (Post 9836821)
No other sentence has caused more anger and frustration in the history of CP.

Laughter maybe.

It reminds me of the deep preseason touchdown pass to Dante Hall many moons ago (I don't remember if it was Green or Collins that threw that one). Either way...it never happened in a game.

Much, I would think, like a deep pass from Smith to McCluster****.

SNR 07-26-2013 07:51 PM

Quote:

“I’m going to play my game. I’m going to try to work as hard as I can to get as good as I can and try to reach my potential and win a bunch of games. That’s the goal. I’m not worried about a bunch of other things.
There's that word again. "Potential."

Why do we always have to use that word when we acquire 28-year old starting QBs? Shouldn't they have already reached their potential by the time we get them?

I'll bet Drew Brees didn't go to the Saints and talk about "potential." I'll bet Peyton Manning didn't go to the Donks and say "potential."

Marcellus 07-26-2013 07:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by keg in kc (Post 9836885)
Laughter maybe.

It reminds me of the deep preseason touchdown pass to Dante Hall many moons ago (I don't remember if it was Green or Collins that threw that one). Either way...it never happened in a game.

Much, I would think, like a deep pass from Smith to McCluster****.

LMAO you best check your history.

Hog Farmer 07-26-2013 07:55 PM

McCluster will no doubt see his talent finally utilized.

Buzz 07-26-2013 07:57 PM

That's arena ball, don't they know it's run, run, pass, punt.

OrtonsPiercedTaint 07-26-2013 07:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tribal Warfare (Post 9836805)
Alex Smith heave a pass deep down the middle that was hauled in for a touchdown by wide receiver Dexter McCluster.

Ya know, deep down the middle to a Chiefs fan could be about their peter length.

keg in kc 07-26-2013 07:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Marcellus (Post 9836894)
you best check your history.

I must've missed that year where dante hall was more than a token receiver. Did he ever net 500 yards in a season? Were any of the "deep" passes he received in regular season games anything other than screens?

(These are legitimate questions; I have a terrible memory)


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