Tuesday OTA recap

Tuesday, Warpaint Illustrated got a second look as the Chiefs practiced, and it was a banner day for three rookies. Let's take a look at who stood out and who struggled.

LT Branden Albert – He was the star of the day. Defensive end Tamba Hali did everything but ride a bulldozer in his attempts to get past Albert to the quarterback, but was stopped. Albert is clearly the starting left tackle and was the best offensive lineman of the day. It's early and the real bullets aren't flying yet, but Albert is NFL ready. He was outstanding in preventing Hali and others from lowering their shoulders and driving toward the quarterback. He keeps defenders upright, negating any momentum or rush to the offensive backfield.

CB Brandon Carr - He was far more active outside on the practice field than he was last week in the indoor facility. He's fast and his size will allow him to reach for plenty of errant throws. The Chiefs are already using more press coverage with Carr and second-round pick Brandon Flowers in the lineup. Dimitri Patterson is the starter opposite Flowers at the moment but if Carr can do it with pads on, we might see two rookie corners start in 2008.

DE Brian Johnston - Many of you thought I was drinking the KC Kool-Aid last week when I said Johnston reminded me of Jared Allen, but if you saw the way he got after the quarterback Tuesday, you'd agree. Johnston was outstanding again, and though he didn't ever go up against Albert, he was able to blow past backup Herb Taylor. I can't wait to see Johnston in KC's first preseason game at Chicago in August.

RG Adrian Jones - It looks like he's the starting right guard for the moment. Last week's star, Chris McDuffie, wasn't all that great Tuesday. Herm Edwards hopes Jones will be the guy because he wants another veteran on the line. Right guard is the only question mark on the line at the moment, and though it's not set in stone, Jones appears to have a leg up on the competition at the moment.

FB Oliver Hoyte - He wasn't good as a pass catcher or blocker Tuesday. To be honest, none of the fullbacks did anything for me. They're all young, but Hoyte, who has the most experience, just looks like he's not catching on in the early stages of the OTA sessions. The best guy so far is Mike Cox, the free agent from Georgia Tech. Hoyte plays too upright and needs some work.

RT Barry Richardson - The young man from Clemson has all the tools to be a solid tackle in the NFL. Today was my first look at him and he was about what you can expect for a sixth-round pick. He did some good things, but was also beaten a few times. He was playing right tackle, which is the spot for him at this level - I don't think he can play left. Either way, he's a project with upside. He'll learn a lot playing behind Damion McIntosh.

DT T.J. Jackson - The free agent from Auburn was impressive Tuesday. He was quick off the ball and spent a considerable amount of time in the offensive backfield. I don't know much about Jackson past what I saw today, but he was far better than Derek Lokey or starter Ron Edwards. He was not as good as Tank Tyler or first-round pick Glenn Dorsey, but stood out.

LB Napoleon Harris - This was the best I've seen out of him in quite some time. What I noticed today is that he stayed in the middle of the field and didn't wander outside in the flat unless the play went that direction. He seems to be taking to the teachings of his new linebackers coach, Gunther Cunningham.

CB Will Poole - The Chiefs signed the veteran today after he had a short stay with the team last offseason in training camp. He looked much sharper this time and it appears he's in better football shape. Patrick Surtain was not on the field today so it appears the Chiefs, who might carry five cornerbacks, are only set at three of those positions. Adding Poole was a smart move as an insurance policy.

K Connor Barth - He was the best kicker on the field today. The former Tar Heel is a rookie, which bodes problems for Herm Edwards who experienced plenty of headaches last year with Justin Medlock. The Chiefs have John Carney sitting at home in San Diego ready to fly east to KC if need be, so the kicking battle might not be finalized until the Chiefs reach New England in September. But Barth has a much stronger leg than Billy Cundiff or Nick Novak. That may be the determining factor in the end.

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