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8/11 Camp Recap: Tight Ends Continue to Shine

Posted Aug 11, 2014

The Chiefs took the field Monday morning on the campus of Missouri Western State University for training camp

There have been very few days during Chiefs training camp where one of the tight ends hasn’t made a play that catches your attention.

Monday was no different.

During 7-on-7 drills, second-year player Demetrius Harris leaped-up and caught a pass across the middle by high-pointing the ball over a defender.

The 6-foot-7 Harris showed his collegiate basketball skills by going up and making the play on a fantastic contested catch.

Led by veteran Anthony Fasano, the tight end group showcased their other young talent during last Thursday’s game against the Bengals.

Second-year player Travis Kelce caught a long touchdown pass from quarterback Chase Daniel—racing past defensive backs for an eye-popping display of speed from the 6-foot-6, 260-pound tight end.

Offensive coordinator Doug Pederson spoke with the media after practice on Monday, and was asked about Harris’ development.

“He’s showing that toughness— that willingness to compete,” Pederson said. “Again, today he made some good, tough catches and he’s learning. He’s learning and he’s getting better.

“He’s gotten stronger. The weight room has helped him. He understands the technique and the fundamentals that Coach (Tom) Melvin is teaching him, and he’s doing a good job in the line of scrimmage."

Another player who has physically developed since last season is offensive lineman Eric Kush, who is currently the backup to starting center Rodney Hudson.

“He’s another one that has increased his strength,” Pederson said of Kush. “And he’s done a better job with his fundamentals and technique. A lot of it with hand placement and feet, you preach about that all the time with offensive linemen. He’s done a nice job but the strength for him—he came in here strong, but he’s gotten stronger.”

Meanwhile, on the defensive side of the ball, veteran outside linebacker Tamba Hali spoke with the media after practice.

Hali spoke of all the talents the Chiefs have in a deep outside linebacker group.

“He (Bob Sutton) is just using the pieces like it’s chess,” Hali said. “Putting all his best players out there, allowing them to do what they do best. We have about five guys [or] six guys that can rush the passer so he puts us out there. We call it a dog front. He wants to see bunch of dogs go after it.”

As the outside linebackers split reps between all the guys who can rusher the passer, rookie Cairo Santos is taking all of the kicking reps as veteran Ryan Succop is still dealing with a groin issue.

Santos spoke after practice about getting all the reps at camp right now.

“It’s awesome,” Santos said. “It’s a chance for me to keep showing these coaches that I can kick in this league, so I love every rep that I can take and the more the better. Hopefully Ryan (Succop) can come out and we can kick together this game. If not, then I’ll be ready to take all the reps.”

In what is becoming a daily must-watch here at training camp, Santos and Succop, when he’s out there, routinely kick footballs right at Director of Video Operations Pat Brazil, when attempting field goals or extra points.

Brazil is the cameraman standing on the scissor lift behind the goalposts, and he’s the one dodging the balls and protecting the camera.

Santos said after practice that Brazil, and the tower in general, make for a good aiming point.

“If it’s short, I’ll try to hit the tower because it’s right down the middle,” Santos said. “It’s a good aiming point. The other day, we hit an extra point here from 33 yards and I hit it right to his (Pat Brazil) hands. So, it’s a good aiming point.”

The Chiefs return to practice Tuesday morning at 8:15 a.m.

Practice bits:

Did not practice: DL Kona Schwenke (shoulder), DL Mike DeVito (hand), DB Damond Smith (abductor), K Ryan Succop (groin)

Left practice early: LB Josh Mauga (groin)

Excused from practice: TE Richard Gordon

New Chiefs safety Jonathon Amaya is wearing No. 27

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