Just when it was beginning to seem reasonable that the Chiefs were going to move forward into this season without signing another impact fee agent, Pioli totally redeems himself by adding one of the best lead blockers in the game. No, it wasn’t a position of need, but it was a signing that just took the Chiefs backfield from explosive to deadly.
McClain was drafted in the 4th round of the 2007 draft out of the University of Alabama. He led the way for elite college backs and made an instant impact in the NFL, going to the pro bowl in 2008 and 2009. He was an All-Pro in 2008 in just his second season. He had 902 yards and 10 TD when asked to carry the load due to injury.
McClain wants more touches and I don’t see an issue with him getting 100-125 carries this season. That doesn’t mean he will only impact the game about 6 to 7 times, because with his beastly frame leading the way for Charles, I feel sorry for opposing defenses. McClain is one of the best fullbacks in the league, even if he may want to be a running back also. He knows that his bread and butter is blowing up linebackers. At 6’0 260, this guy was built for 3rd and 1.
Despite leading the league in rushing, the Chiefs were last in the NFL in third and short situations. This I can guarantee you will change with McClain’s addition to the roster. I was very surprised this has gone under the national radar, by the best rushing team in football dramatically improving their biggest strength. Everyone is going to know what the Chiefs want to do and that’s pound the rock. Todd Haley wants teams to know we are going to run the ball and still be successful at it. We will invite people to load up in the box so the backs can run it right down their throat and as soon as they do, you better have some good coverage, because if you don’t one of the three B’s will be streaking down the field.
Matt Cassel now has more tools around him then Bob Villa. This offense is going to be a force to be reckoned with. There isn’t any debate about the strongest backfield in the league now. I think they also make this move to continue down the preserve Charles route, because of the rate that backs are being overused into three and four year careers. I look at Charles to see just a little bit of a rise in carries to about 250 to 260, so that means there is close to the same amount of about 250 to be split three ways. McCluster, Jones and McClain will split those and I see Jones getting less and less. McCluster will be more of a gimmick type runner that will be used in the right situations. Jones and McClain will do the bruising in the short yardage and on the goal line.
Spreading around the wealth is always a good problem to have. What makes McClain stand out though is his ability to both carry the ball and be a traditional fullback. When he isn’t running the ball he will be helping Jamal Charles average 7-8 yards a carry. Yes, Jim Browns record per carry is going down big time. Being in Kansas City, ESPN will continue to overlook the Chiefs until they make people notice with their play on the field.
In the same day, the Chiefs also re-signed defensive star Tamba Hali to a 5 year 60 million dollar deal, with $35 million guaranteed. Practice should look a little different today than it did yesterday. All the new additions will begin to practice and the leader of the defense is now well taken care of, so it’s time to go to work.
Yes, I drink a lot of Chiefs Kool-Aid, but when people ask me what I want out of this team I will answer them honestly and proudly…………Kick the Eagles ass in the SUPERBOWL!