The Kansas City Chiefs preseason opener is in Chicago facing off against the Bears. This preseason is an important one for the Chiefs as they have many new young faces.
Chicago’s starters playing
Many teams do not play their starting lineups until the end of the preseason. But with the new three-game preseason format some teams are changing their approach. The Chicago Bears are no exception, as they are expected to give their starters many reps in the preseason opener. Players like Justin Fields and Darnell Mooney are among the best young players Chicago has to offer. It surprised many when it was announced that they will be suited up.
New Chicago Head Coach Matt Eberflus spoke to the media about the decision to play the starters. He said that the team is still very young and learning a new system. The preseason has always been the best place for new systems to be learned and adjusted prior to the season. Justin Fields will of course be the Bears player to watch. Many will be watching him as he strides to improve off of a mediocre rookie season.
Chiefs Rookies’ Big Test
The Bears will give the Kansas City Chiefs young defensive players like Trent McDuffie and George Karlaftis the opportunity to compete against NFL starters for the first time. This experience will prove valuable as these rookies are expected to make an immediate impact. Karlaftis is competing for a starting spot, he needs to show that he can be a consistent edge rusher in the NFL. If Kansas City goes the traditional route and sits their starters, these rookies will be tested early and often. Also, look for McDuffie to be matched up with Mooney. This will be the premiere matchup of the game. Furthermore, offensive players like Skyy Moore will be tested by starting NFL cornerbacks for the first time.
There is no telling how long the Chiefs’ premiere rookies will play for but there will be plenty of opportunity. With the new three-game preseason these first games will show how coaches will adjust to players playing time. With one game stripped away from the schedule some coaches might play the bottom of the depth chart more to make roster decisions. In this case watch out for running back Isiah Pacheco see many reps. Pacheco has been one of the stars of training camp and may fight his way to a roster spot.
Needless to say, there are many other players to watch during the Chiefs preseason opener, but for now we await for the preseason opener and for who will take advantage of the opportunity.