BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 19: The Kansas City Chiefs defense lines up against the Baltimore Ravens offense during the first half of a preseason game at M&T Bank Stadium on August 19, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Scouts, Inc. Not Sold On Kansas City Chiefs Guards Ryan Lilja, Jon Asamoah

The interior of the Chiefs offensive line is being remade and the ratings at Scouts, Inc. don't favor the Chiefs decision-makers.

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Kansas City Chiefs Casey Wiegmann Listed As No. 37 On ESPN's Center Rankings

After an impressive showing among most categories on ESPN's new player rankings (via Scouts, Inc.), the Kansas City Chiefs are failing miserably along the interior offensive line. Whether or not the scouts' views are accurate, the Chiefs certainly don't look good on paper at the center position when compared to other teams.

Casey Wiegmann is the incumbent signed to a new one-year deal this off-season and he's currently ranked No. 37 overall in the NFL in centers, meaning that several teams have back-ups rated better than Wiegmann. His overall score of 62 places him just above Rudy Niswanger at 61. Nick Mangold of the Jets is No. 1 with a 90 overall score.

The Chiefs might have realized this weakness, however, when they drafted Miami's Rodney Hudson with their second round selection. It's clear that he's the future of the position, although his readiness for the NFL level is in question given his lack of true experience at center having played a lot of guard in college as well. He will need the adjustments that Haley and his offensive staff will instill in him, but the position is brighter than the Chiefs are getting credit for at this point.


Scouts, Inc. Not Sold On Kansas City Chiefs Guards Ryan Lilja, Jon Asamoah

As the ESPN/Scouts, Inc. top player rankings continue to unfold, the rankings now move to the guard position, where the Chiefs are not sitting pretty. In fact, their rankings show that the Chiefs got much worse by letting longtime guard Brian Waters go in exchange to start Jon Asamoah and Ryan Lilja at both guard positions.

Specifically, the rankings have Ryan Lilja as the only ranked Chief and he comes in as the 45th best guard in the NFL with a 66 overall ranking. To give you an idea of how that correlates, Waters comes in at No. 15 overall with a 78 overall score. Asamoah isn't even ranked for that matter, leaving one to wonder whether they bothered to rank him or don't believe he's among the top 78 in the NFL.

As for Waters, Scouts, Inc. praises his technique saying, "Waters has excellent initial quickness and above-average agility and body control. He provides excellent leadership both on and off the field and is a student of the game. He is a good technician who knows how to use his hands to get a good fit and will reposition quickly when slapped aside. He has heavy hands that shock opponents and steer them on by the pocket. He does a good job of finishing blocks and shows a lot of awareness when facing stunts and twists."

Yet as much as they love him, it's difficult to ignore the fact that Waters remains unsigned despite several teams with obvious needs along the offensive front. Perhaps teams are waiting until after Week 1 when contracts aren't guaranteed, but Waters should have found a home by now if he was still a top 15 guard in the NFL. There's no doubting that he's a Hall of Fame candidate with a storied career among history's best interior linemen, but it's hard to tell at this point whether or not the Chiefs made the right move.


Kansas City Chiefs Jared Gaither Named Top 7 Offensive Tackle In NFL

The Kansas City Chiefs have been reinventing their offensive line on the go for the last two off-seasons, with the addition of Jon Asamoah and Ryan Lilja last season to the guard position and Casey Wiegmann at center. The trend continued this year with the drafting of Rodney Hudson, but tackle was largely left untouched -- leaving Branden Albert and Barry Richardson as the incumbents on teh end. Then came the surprise signing of Jared Gaither by Scott Pioli only several days ago. 

The talented tackle used to play for the Baltimore Ravens and was a frontline starter for the perennial playoff team, but health issues kept Gaither out all of last year. That's the main concern for the Chiefs new tackle this year, but that hasn't stopped Scouts, Inc. from praising Gaither and believing he's still good enough to be listed as a Top 7 tackle in the NFL.

They write, "Gaither has great length but can be inconsistent about keeping his pads down in pass protection. He has good hand use but needs more consistent technique to gain leverage. He has natural power as a run blocker and is aggressive. His height makes it tough to maintain proper pad level and body position but he has the raw talent and consistent effort to improve"

That impressive size at 6-9, 340 lbs is enough to scare any defensive lineman, and the Chiefs are hoping he can aid the offensive line with the talent that everyone has praised. But back concerns continue to plague Gaither's ability to get on the field, so it's hard to tell exactly what the Chiefs are getting with Gaither in tow.


Kansas City Chiefs Jamaal Charles Listed As Third Best RB In NFL

Scouts, Inc. and ESPN have recently released its 2011 NFL player rankings, and the Kansas City Chiefs have to be happy with the position of their offensive MVP. Jamaal Charles is the third best running back in the NFL according to the listings, and it's clear he could jump both the Vikings' Adrian Peterson and the Titans' Chris Johnson with another season like last year.

Teaming with veteran Thomas Jones last year, Charles led the Chiefs rushing attack which led the NFL in total rushing yards. Charles' exceptional 6.4 yards/carry listed him alongside some of the best rushing seasons in NFL history and his star has never been brighter. Now the Chiefs are hoping he can continue such rushing totals against more formidable competition in 2011. Scouts, Inc. writes:

A third-round choice in 2008, Charles has steadily improved his numbers each and every year. Although he has shared starting and playing time with either Larry Johnson (2009) or Thomas Jones (2010), he has managed to lead the team in yards and gain in excess of 1,000 yards each of the past two years.

He finished 2010 as the league's No. 2 ball carrier with 1,467 yards and had the best per-carry average (6.4). He is explosive to the hole as well as through it and is extremely dangerous once he gets to the second level with his open-field running skills and acceleration. He is slightly undersized for the position but appears to hold up well. He is a very effective receiver out of the backfield as well as on downfield routes.

Given the Chiefs additions this off-season to continue to feature the running game -- from the signing of two-time Pro Bowl fullback Le'Ron McClain from the Ravens to the addition of blocking tight end Anthony Becht -- the Chiefs should be better poised to run the football than ever before. And Charles has the talent to become the best overall RB in the NFL in the process.


Kansas City Chiefs Have No. 2 Fullback In NFL In Le'Ron McClain

In the running series over at ESPN, Scouts, Inc. has developed new ratings and rankings for the top players in the NFL. And in their new fullback rankings revealed today, the Kansas City Chiefs have the second best fullback in the entire NFL in new free agent signing Le'Ron McClain.

It's no surprise that McClain is listed so high, since he's already a two-time Pro Bowler at age 26. He was signed away from the Ravens to bolster a running unit that was already the No. 1 rushing attack in the NFL with Thomas Jones and Jamaal Charles. Chiefs fans now hope the success in the running game continues as McClain uses his skills to complement what was already present.

Scouts, Inc.'s profile describes McClain with the following:

McClain has developed into one of the more physical lead blockers in the league. He is a big, strong player with deceptive agility and quickness. McClain has enough speed and quickness to get to the corner on perimeter leads.

As a ball carrier, he is effective running between the tackles in short-yardage and goal-line situations. He has good vision to the hole with some ability to adjust and hit the hole with good pad level. He takes good angles to seal for position after attacking the line of scrimmage. He has good overall quickness, agility and balance to secure and sustain his blocks. He also has adequate hands as a receiver out of the backfield. McClain is a great fit for what the Ravens want to be, which is a physical, hard-nosed offensive unit.

It's clear the Chiefs are going to be capable of even more things in 2011 with a more well-rounded passing game and the addition of McClain. The Ravens won't miss McClain given they signed the No. 1 fullback on the Scouts, Inc. list in Vonta Leach, but the Chiefs are certainly better at the position.

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