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Unknown, But Important Contributors – Kansas City Chiefs Edition

The Bolts play their first of two remaining games against the AFC West opponent that we usually find the least objectionable. With that being the case, here are the guys that we don’t know too much about. In December, we’ll take a look at potential free agents.

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

UBIC - Offense

Charcandrick West (RB-#35) For those of you that play fantasy, West is not unknown and was probably one of the more sought after waiver wire acquisitions after Jamal Charles went out for the season in Week 5.  After a disappointing initial start in week 6, West has rewarded both fantasy owners and the all too real Chiefs with decent performances in the games since then.

West has a similar story to the Bolts own Branden Oliver.  Playing college ball at a small school (Abilene Christian), he was undrafted in 2014.  He was active for 6 games and did not see the field in his rookie season except for getting targeted for one pass (not caught).  This season though, West has replaced Knile Davis as the team's primary back-up RB.  When Charles went down, West was the next man up.

The 5'10", 204-pound West does not have the speed, wiggle, or "pop" of Charles (few do), but he does have a decent skill set.  West has good vision, patience, and can make a hard cut when a hole opens.  He has power and strength in his running.  His production has been decent; 508 yards from scrimmage on 99 total touches.  He has scored 4 times and fumbled once.  Against the worst rushing defense in the league, look for West to get the ball often on Sunday.  He is not much of threat in the passing game, only catching half of his 24 targets.

Honorable Mention

Chris Conley (WR-#17) While Jeremy Maclin and Travis Kelce are targeted most often in the Chiefs passing game, 3rd on the team in targets is a rookie, Chris Conley.  Conley was selected in the 3rd round last May.  He played his college ball at Georgia, stretching the field for an 18 YPC average and 8 TD's.  Conley is fast, but given the Chiefs offensive system and the down-field limits of their QB, that speed is not as much an asset as it would be on other teams.  The potential matchup against Flowers is worrisome as the Bolts CB has seemed to have problems staying with fast receivers this season.

UBIC - Defense

Marcus Peters (CB-#22) Peters is also a rookie and he was the Chiefs 1st round pick last May.  Going into the draft, he was the highest ranking CB's according to many pundits.  There were the dreaded "character issues" dragging him down on several draft boards.  The was due to a media reported "tantrum" on the sideline after getting criticized by new coach Chris Peterson for a "stupid" personal foul.  That resulted in a one game suspension at the University of Washington.  His subsequent argument with his position coach during practice resulted in dismissal from the team.

In retrospect, the concerns which had a few teams shying away from an obvious talent seem misplaced.  The disciplinary issues at Washington seem to have their root causes in a mistake on a football field, youthful anger from an intense competitor, and personality clashes with a new coaching staff.  The son of a high school coach, Peters has proved to be a skilled corner in the NFL and by all accounts, is a good team mate that is coachable and professional in his preparation and approach to the game.

His performance has been so exemplary that he is a candidate for defensive rookie of the year.  QB's that are normally eager to challenge a rookie CB are looking elsewhere at this point and for good reason.  He leads the Chiefs in passes defended (13) and INT's (4).  He has returned one of his picks for a score.  He is second on the team in solo tackles with 37.

At 6' even and 200 pounds, he has the prototype CB physique.  He has plenty of speed to maintain coverage on the fastest receiver or recover and close on the rare occasion he bites on a double move or loses track of his assignment.  His instincts are developed far beyond where you would expect a 22 year- old rookie to be.  Rivers and the Bolts receivers will see him for the first time this Sunday; it will certainly not be the last.

Honorable Mention

Jaye Howard (DT-#96) Howard was originally selected out of the University of Florida in the 4th round by Seattle in 2012.  With the depth on the defense that Pete Carroll put together, he had a tough time seeing the field in 2012. Then he had a tough time making the team.  Cut by the ‘hawks, he was picked up by the Chiefs and has been in KC since 2013.  The 6'3", 300 pound Howard is the Chiefs primary nose tackle this season.  He has made the majority of starts in that position since last season.  He is currently 4th on the team in solo tackles (23) and has also contributed 2.5 sacks this season.  He is stout against the run and adds decent push up the middle on pass plays.