The Kansas City Chiefs starters are starting to come into a focus with less than a week before they open the regular season against the San Diego Chargers on Monday Night Football.
The majority of the positions have been secure for a while but I think we can accurately project nearly every offensive and defensive position.
Here are my starter projections for the Chiefs:
Quarterback: Matt Cassel
Wide receivers: Chris Chambers and Dwayne Bowe
Offensive line: LT Branden Albert, LG Brian Waters, C Casey Wiegmann, RG Ryan Lilja, RT Barry Richardson (RT Ryan O'Callaghan - injured starter)
Things get a little interesting here. Wiegmann started this week running with the first team so you gotta think that's his spot. He's also the veteran, and the Chiefs didn't release him, so you'd think he'd be a starter. It also appears that there's a chance Ryan O'Callaghan won't play on Monday night. He's suffering from some sort of injury and Chiefs coach Todd Haley has said players generally have to practice to play.
Tight end: Leonard Pope
Tony Moeaki has been injured at times during camp so he didn't really have a shot to take this job. It's Pope's to lose for the time being.
Fullback: Tim Castille
This is just a guess between him and Mike Cox. There hasn't been one particular player here that has stood out above the rest.
Running back: Thomas Jones
He's technically the 1A starter. Jamaal Charles will see plenty of carries with Jackie Battle backing them up.
Left defensive end: Tyson Jackson
There was some talk that Wallace Gilberry could take his spot but I think that was just a motivational tactic.
Nose tackle: Ron Edwards
You can add Anthony Toribio to the depth here but since he hasn't stepped on the field with the Chiefs he can't be considered a serious contender for the job yet.
Right defensive end: Glenn Dorsey
Left outside linebacker: Mike Vrabel
Andy Studebaker, who is behind Vrabel, will still get on the field. The Chiefs now put Vrabel in the middle on nickel defense and put Studebaker on the outside. In the base defense, though, it's Vrabel over Studebaker for now.
Left inside linebacker: Jovan Beclher
We're assuming he'll start since Derrick Johnson has been told he'll start.
Right inside linebacker: Derrick Johnson
The Chiefs reportedly told Johnson he'd be the starter but Demorrio Williams has been playing better so I imagine there will be a healthy rotation there.
Right outside linebacker: Tamba Hali
Left cornerback: Brandon Flowers
Right cornerback: Brandon Carr
Strong safety: Eric Berry
Free safety: Jon McGraw
He has held off Kendrick Lewis to this point. I think McGraw starts the season and Lewis eventually finishes it.