The Chiefs, their fans and the media were all keyed up for the first full practice of training camp Friday afternoon, but Mother Nature had other plans. After KC's position groups completed most of their individual drills, menacing clouds appeared and an enormous storm blew in as the inclement weather sirens of River Falls blared loudly.
That meant everyone – players, coaches, executives and media members – bolted for the safety of the Chiefs indoor facility. For 20 minutes the power lights flickered off and on and a nasty rainstorm soaked the practice fields.
In an attempt to salvage the afternoon, the Chiefs began another walkthrough in the gym before beginning a brief period of 11-on-11's, but it wasn't quite football. As Herm Edwards would say afterwards, however, "It's one day. It's not every day." There's still plenty of camp left.
Herm Edwards began practice by loosening up his powerful right arm, apparently in preparation for defensive back drills. But no, he was merely helping out a Chiefs assistant who was tossing bullets to corners and safeties 10 minutes later. Think that was in Herm's contract?
Brian Johnston has been compared to Jared Allen almost since the minute he was drafted, but the two have their differences. Watching the rookie participate in drills today, it was evident he's not nearly as long and lean as Allen is. He does appear to have plenty of foot quickness, however.
You may remember Tank Tyler's struggles in training camp as a rookie. He hasn't become Mean Joe Greene in one offseason, as he tripped and ended up eating grass after failing to cleanly complete the last step during a rope drill, but it's worth noting he appears to be in much better shape this year. The sizable gut he sported a year ago appears diminished.
Devard Darling and Dwayne Bowe were the first wide receivers to line up with the starting offense in 11-on-11 drills today. On defense, Brandon Flowers and Patrick Surtain set up at cornerback with the starters before anyone else.
Defensive end Turk McBride lined up as the left defensive end in KC's nickel defense on one play. Next to him at defensive tackle was Alfonso Boone, who has normally lined up as the starter at left defensive end. The Chiefs threw out Brandon Flowers, Patrick Surtain and Brandon Carr in the same package. There's clearly no doubt about the top three corners on the team – now the Chiefs have to find the top two.
Jamaal Charles has blazing speed, but also remarkably skinny legs for a running back. His running style is awfully reminiscent of Reggie Bush.
Head Coach Herm Edwards said fullback Mike Cox is ahead of everyone else because of his experience in Chan Gailey's offense. Edwards added that KC's offensive scheme will be 95 percent installed by the sixth practice of camp.
PLAYS OF THE DAY
Larry Johnson stopped short of the line of scrimmage, paused as his blockers set up and twisted around to look for the incoming screen pass. A high throw posed no problem, as Johnson leapt in the air and snagged the ball with one hand before getting on his horse and running down the sideline. Anyone want to question those hands again?
Michael Allan may be behind rookie tight end Brad Cottam on the depth chart, but he's not going down without a fight. Today he hauled in a long pass down the right sideline despite tight coverage, looking almost like a wide receiver.
Big ups to the Chiefs media caretakers. When the storm hit, they wasted no time ushering everyone inside to safety. There wasn't a moment's hesitation. The situation could have been much worse.
Larry Johnson looks absolutely thrilled to be back toting the football. The Chiefs gave him plenty of opportunities today, and he put on a show, darting through holes and accelerating into the secondary like it was 2005 all over again. He didn't even drop a pass. Johnson appears fresh, hungry and ready to carry KC's offense once again.
The first fumbled snap of 2008 has Damon Huard's name on it.
"Finish! Through the line, Tyler!"
- Defensive line coach Tim Krumrie, right before Tank Tyler took a spill.
"Hell of a job. Turk, what's the matter? Did I hurt your feelings?"
- Krumrie, in a rare jovial moment.
"When the lightning bolts come out of the sky and the wind starts blowing, there's a guy that I believe in."
- Herm Edwards on the storm.
"Tomorrow, they'll forget everything they learned today. But that's OK, they're young."
- Edwards on the problems the storm created.
KNOCK ON WOOD
The Chiefs have made it through one day of practice without any injuries.
River Falls Recap: Friday, 7/25 PM Practice
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