Defense! Defense! Defense! ... That is exactly what the Kansas City Chiefs fans will be chanting when their team hosts the San Diego Chargers at the Arrowhead Stadium on Monday. Todd Haley, the head coach of the Chiefs admitted organizing extra practices in order to overcome the defensive lapses Chiefs have been experiencing this season.
The Chiefs went out to lose the first 3 matches of the season mostly because of the lack of defense. Taking notice of this Haley worked hard on his defensive lineup and now can proudly boast defeating the Oakland Raiders 28-0 last week, which also takes Chiefs’ tally to 3-3.
Haley told media in an interview that he analyzed all departments in detail and found out that with a few defensive tweaks Chiefs could enjoy success. One of the things Haley has worked on are cornerbacks. Haley stated that it was the job of cornerbacks to block passes whether they were from the quarterbacks or from the wide receivers.
Haley also shared the secret of a smaller cornerback covering a taller receiver. Haley said, “I think the good corners just understand leverage and the ability to position their body in a spot that takes away maybe some of that advantage. That’s always a big challenge, great challenge for corners when you’re facing a guy like Vincent Jackson. It doesn’t matter how tall you are because he is a big, fast guy that can jump. Again, I think Brandon [Flowers] is just continuing to work on doing the things that he needs to do to continue to show that he’s one of the premier corners in the league along with helping us, more importantly, defend a very good passing team.”
Haley further explained a couple of practice scenarios and drills that cornerbacks could use when difference in height was acting as a factor on field. Haley said, “When we line up in show-team situations, you’ll see a bunch of different colored jerseys and numbers out there. We always put numbers on certain players on each side of the ball to No. 1, let our defenders know where those players are lining up and No. 2, you try to simulate. We have discussions about who is going to play Vincent Jackson this week, who’s going to be Gates, and you’ll use receivers to be Gates sometimes.
Haley added, “You’ll use obviously tall, fast guys if you’re Vincent Jackson. But, the good thing is we’ve got a number of different guys on the team that… It’s a big part of becoming a good team, I think, is the looks that you get in practice. The better team you are, the better looks you’re able to give on both sides of the ball, really.”