Red Zone

Chiefs aren’t quite set at middle three spots on offensive line

Since the Chiefs drafted Eric Fisher and Branden Albert ended his brief holdout, Kansas City has gone with a starting offensive line that included those two players at tackle, Jeff Allen and Jon Asamoah at guard and Rodney Hudson at center. While Fisher and Albert will remain the starting tackles when the regular season begins, some things may need to play out before the Chiefs are set at the middle three spots.

Coach Andy Reid has said he will go with the five best players and what the Chiefs are doing with their line in practice indicates that search is continuing. Donald Stephenson is getting plenty of work with the starters at guard on both sides of the line. Allen will occasionally shift over to center, replacing Hudson.

Reid and offensive line coach Andy Heck value versatility on the offensive line and having Stephenson ready to play either guard or tackle can’t hurt. But this shuffling at both guard and center indicates the Chiefs are still looking at what might be their best combination for those middle three positions. That search will probably continue at training camp, where the Chiefs will practice in pads and be able to get a better idea of what they have in not only Allen, Asamoah, Hudson and Stephenson, but Geoff Schwartz as well.

There’s also still the possibility the Chiefs could entice Ryan Lilja out of retirement. Lilja, a starter for the Chiefs the last three seasons, had knee and toe surgeries after the season that prohibited him from returning during the offseason. But if the Chiefs don’t like what they see from their other guards and center, they could renew their push to get him back in their lineup.