KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It's been a rookie year to remember for Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Nick Bolton.
Drafted 58th overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, Bolton hit the ground running with Kansas City, racking up a team high 112 regular season tackles in 2021.
"I never once came here thinking, ‘Okay, I'm gonna lead the team in tackles,” Bolton told reporters ahead of KC's fourth consecutive trip to the AFC Championship game. “It just kind of happened.”
Bolton’s 86-yard fumble return touchdown against the Denver Broncos in week 18 helped the Chiefs secure the AFC’s No. 2 postseason seed.
“Nick’s special,” Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo said Thursday.
“He's one of the most instinctive football players, certainly linebackers, that I've worked with,” Spagnuolo continued, giving credit to veteran leaders in the unit for bringing Bolton up to NFL speed.
“It’s a testament to those older guys,” Bolton said of his rookie successes. “ Everybody that's been here…pushing me every single day to be the best person I can be, to help the team out and honestly that’s all that matters at this point in the season.”