So just how good is Kansas City Chiefs CB Brandon Flowers? The 2008 second round pick is making noise in the NFL as a shutdown corner. He's been a significant piece of the Chiefs 2010 defensive turnaround from bottom-feeder top five in points allowed. The change in the Chiefs defense has been impressive but Flowers isn't coming completely out of nowhere.
In the 2009 season we started to realize that Flowers was going to be a very good player. He was a solid cover corner, can tackle well and does well in run support. In 2010, he's still that same player -- only better.
We've seen the trend this year with the Chiefs defensive rise of folks comparing Flowers' play to that of New York Jets CB Darrelle Revis and Oakland Raiders CB Nnamdi Asomugha. Both those guys are considered the cream of the crop and people are now throwing Flowers' name into that group.
"Brandon Flowers is exceptional," Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. said. "He’s not very known, but he is playing terrific football. He’s playing better than (New York Jets Darrelle) Revis and as good as Nnamdi (Oakland’s Asomugha). He’s been that good."
Exceptional is a fair word to use to describe him. Chiefs head coach Todd Haley explained this week that Flowers truly is a complete cornerback.
I am seeing something different in Brandon, skill-set aside, this guy is a unique, highly-competitive player. You can see that he enjoys and thrives on being challenged. As each receiver group comes into town or we got to town against, the bigger the name the bigger the step up you see from Brandon.
And that's not all. Haley says he may be the best corner in the game when it comes to run support.
I talk about receivers being football players not just pass catchers; Brandon is a football player now. I don’t know that I would take any corner over Brandon in a run support role.
Haley often talks about his receivers being complete players and that includes blocking. As a former receivers coach that's one of Haley's points of emphasis. He compares that to Flowers doing more than just intercepting passes, which is a big reason the Chiefs are so stout against the run this year.
He's a very smart player, too. After the Buffalo game last week, we talked to Flowers in the locker room and he explained that he purposely got a defensive holding call in the game to avoid giving up a big play. Five yards vs. 55 yards. It was a good call and something he called a "veteran move" and Haley agreed with.
He makes huge plays, too. Last week against Buffalo he forced a fumble on an open field tackle against WR Lee Evans. He picked off a pass and took it back for six when the Chiefs were in a tight game against the Cleveland Browns in Week 2.
If you're to believe folks around the league, Flowers is entering -- or is already there -- the category of elite cornerbacks in the NFL.
Revis. Asomugha. And Flowers.
Nice ring to it, no?