Oakland Raiders Vs. The AFC West: Cornerbacks

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Dec 28, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs strong safety Ron Parker (38) is congratulated by cornerback Sean Smith (21) after Parker breaks up a pass play during the second half at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs won 19-7. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs ranked second only to the Seattle Seahawks – widely viewed as one of the best secondaries in the entire NFL – in terms of yards per game given up through the air. The Seahawks gave up an amazing 184 ypg, while the Chiefs held opponents to just 203 ypg. It’s a pretty amazing stat, particularly, since most people probably didn’t realize it.

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  • Of course, the Kansas City pass defense undoubtedly benefited from having one of the fiercest and most effective pass rushes in the entire NFL. To have Justin Houston, Dontari Poe, and Tamba Hali terrorizing opposing QB’s, and perhaps putting them in positions where they weren’t throwing terrific balls, without a doubt helps mask deficiencies in the secondary.

    Let’s face it, Kansas City’s corners weren’t exactly special in 2014. In fact, if you look at the raw numbers, their cornerback unit, wasn’t even that particularly good. Their number one corner, Sean Smith, started all 16 games last season and had one pick, 18 passes defensed, and 46 tackles. While relatively effective, the Kansas City corners were average. At best.

    And with the same group of corners coming back this season, there likely won’t be much of a leap forward in terms of effectiveness. It’s a good thing the Chiefs have such a dominant pass rush otherwise, their pass defense might look a whole lot worse.

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