Quarterback Ricky Stanzi isn’t exactly a dead man walking at Chiefs training camp yet, but his chances of making the opening game roster appear slim, even though full-squad practice won’t begin until Friday. It may be too late to save his job but Stanzi knows how important it is for him to play well once real practice begins.
“I guess it’s critical,’’ he said today after the Chiefs finished the second of their three rookie practices. “You want to play well.’’
Stanzi is the only one of the Chiefs’ quarterbacks not new to their roster this year and not acquired by new general manager John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid. Alex Smith and Chase Daniel are unchallenged as the starter and top backup, leaving Tyler Bray and Stanzi to compete for the last roster spot.
Bray, an undrafted rookie, has the advantage of joining the Chiefs after the arrival of Dorsey and Reid. He also has shown enough ability that he’s worth keeping around as a developmental prospect. Bray has been the third quarterback into drills and ahead of Stanzi at camp, an accurate assessment of where they stand on the depth chart.
So Stanzi has little room for error.
“We’re competing,’’ Stanzi said. “We’re splitting reps. I’m just really worried about the reps I got. It’s been nice to be out here a couple of days early just to refresh with the playbook and kind of get up to speed with the guys, especially with the receivers.
“I feel like things are going well but it’s only the second day and there’s a lot of work that needs to be done. That’s kind of going to be the same mentality going throughout the whole camp. Nothing is going to change (from) the beginning of the camp to the end.’’