The Chiefs’ experimentation along the offensive line during organized team activities continued Thursday, and it included one interesting switch: Donald Stephenson got the first-team reps at left tackle in front of Eric Fisher, who got the second-team reps.
At the beginning of OTAs, Chiefs coach Andy Reid warned that there would be plenty of experimentation, and when asked about his latest line, he again cautioned against reading too much into it.
“That’s the only way you can get Donald some reps there,” Reid said. “We want to make sure we’ve got everybody covered. Actually, Fish has done a very nice job, so I wouldn’t read anything into that. We’re staying consistent.”
So the move had nothing to do with Fisher’s performance?
“Not at all,” Reid said.
As it stands, Stephenson — who started four games at left tackle in 2013 — is easily the Chiefs’ most experienced player at left tackle, next to Fisher. Derek Sherrod, a free-agent signee who was a first-round pick of the Packers in 2011, also has experience there.
A good day for DBs
Thursday’s practice was extremely competitive between the receivers and defensive backs, as a number of big plays happened on both sides.
But the practice also featured at least five interceptions, an indication the Chiefs’ secondary is serious about improving on their league-worst total of six interceptions a year ago.
“We had a couple tipped balls and they took advantage of it,” Reid said. “They’ve been doing a good job with that.”
Reid was very happy with the way both sides competed, as multiple pass-catchers — including Frankie Hammond and tight ends James O’Shaughnessy and Ryan Taylor — hauled in some nice receptions, as well.
“They’re going back and forth, which is good,” Reid said. “We’re getting good work in there and both sides are being effective. I like the way they’re challenging each other within the rules — you can’t tackle and you can’t play bump, but they’re doing a good job of playing.”
Quarterback Tyler Bray, who tore his ACL in January, tweeted Wednesday that he’s now “100 percent,” and that he recently ran for four minutes.
Reid stopped short of declaring him completely healthy, but said his recovery is going well.
“When he was here the last time, he wasn’t quite up to that, but he was getting close, and that’s a good thing,” Reid said. “He’s obviously not ready to go or he’d be here, but he’s obviously recovering.”
When asked if Bray will be ready for training camp in mid-July, Reid said he wasn’t sure.
“We’ll see on that — I don’t have enough information on that right now,” Reid said. “He’s on schedule — that’s where we felt he was when he was here for a couple days.”
▪ Rookie receiver Chris Conley missed practice Thursday while he attended the NFL Players Association Rookie Premiere in Los Angeles. All rookies who are invited are required to attend.
▪ Rookie free agent running back Keshawn Hill did not practice due to a strained hamstring.