KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Ninety.
That's the number of players the Chiefs will start with when the full squad reports this week to training camp in St. Joseph, MO.
The team will eventually have to pare that roster down to 53 players before the regular season starts. But while they’re here, we might as well get to know everybody.
Basically, there are nine positional units on the team (quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, tight ends, defensive linemen, offensive linemen, linebackers, defensive backs, and specialists). The biggest group belongs in the defensive backfield, where 18 players are vying for spots. Six are safeties, eight are cornerbacks, four are hybrids.
The smallest group is the specialists. After all, there is no backup kicker, backup punter, nor backup long snapper chewing roster spots. Thus, there are only three specialists “specializing” in their craft: K Harrison Butker, P Dustin Colquitt, and LS James Winchester.
There are four Williamses on the roster. And three are running backs (Damien, Darrel, Kerwyn). There are two Murrays, two Smiths, and only one Kpassagnon … shocking.
Speaking of unique names, get to know Makinton Dorleant, a defensive back from Northern Iowa. There’s also Step Durham, a defensive back from Georgia Tech. But the best name of all is Dee Liner … he plays D-Line.
Dustin Colquitt is the oldest and longest-tenured Chief. He’s been in Kansas City since 2005. The 36-year-old was born during Reagan’s first term. Only six Chiefs on this current roster are in their 30s.
Meanwhile, there are 12 22-year-olds on the Chiefs roster. And one 21-year-old, Khalil McKenzie, who was born right before Clinton was inaugurated into his second term.
All told, 25 rookies help make up the 90-man roster.
The Chiefs roster includes guys from brand names colleges like Florida and no-name colleges like Regina.
The Chiefs have players from Eastern Michigan, Western Michigan, Central Michigan, and Michigan Michigan.
Georgia, Georgia Tech, Georgia Southern.
Northern Iowa, Northern Arizona, North Carolina State.
They’ve got three players apiece from BYU (Andy Reid’s alma mater), LSU, Oklahoma, Florida State, and Clemson. But their favorite university must be Tennessee. There are four Volunteers getting paid by Kansas City: McKenzie, Alex Ellis, Dustin Colquitt, Eric Berry.
As with most rosters this time of year, the most popular way they got here was “CFA” (college free agent). But plenty of Chiefs are home grown, as evidenced by 29 of them being drafted by the organization. Four of those were first round picks: Patrick Mahomes, Eric Fisher, Eric Berry, and Dee Ford.
If you’re attending training camp this season, maybe the most important category is numbers. The Step Durhams and the Central Oklahomas and the 22-year-olds aren’t going to jump out at you.
But their numbers will.
So, at this camp, 15 numbers will not be worn. Ten of them are retired like 16 (Len Dawson), 58 (Derrick Thomas), and 78 (Bobby Bell). The other five you won’t see are 37, 52, 62, 69, and 93.
Meanwhile, six numbers might be giving you a double-take as 6, 25, 26, 30, 60, and 65 will be each worn by two players (one offense, one defense).
You’ve got to fit all those defensive backs in there somehow.