Red Zone

Ron Parker moves to nickel corner for the Chiefs

Kansas City Chiefs strong safety Ron Parker (38) tackled Cincinnati Bengals running back Rex Burkhead (33) on Sunday.
Kansas City Chiefs strong safety Ron Parker (38) tackled Cincinnati Bengals running back Rex Burkhead (33) on Sunday. deulitt@kcstar.com

The Chiefs turned to safety Ron Parker, a former cornerback, to help solve their nickel problems on Sunday against the Bengals.

With Phillip Gaines, their best slot corner, out for the year because of a torn ACL, the Chiefs opted to go with Parker — who started a handful of games at corner in 2014 — instead of the other corners on their roster, Marcus Cooper, Jamell Fleming and Steven Nelson.

“Parker started for us at corner (last year), so I don’t look at Parker as a safety — I look at him as a guy that can do both,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said Monday. “That’s why we moved him in there. That’s a different position in there to play.

“Parker did it against San Diego a year or two ago and did a pretty good job against (Eddie) Royal, so he had a little more experience than those other guys playing in there, and I think that’s important. The responsibilities in there are a little different (than) playing on the outside.”

Parker, who signed a five-year extension this offseason, said he was willing to do whatever the coaches asked him to do.

“We came into a situation last week where Phillip Gaines got hurt and we needed somebody to step in and play nickel,” Parker said. “They asked me to do that and I did that to the best of my ability.”

The Chiefs struggled to contain Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton, who threw for 321 yards and a touchdown. But the pass rush played a role in that as well, as the Chiefs failed to record a single sack or quarterback hit in the official game book.

“They’ve got a good receiving corps, Andy Dalton’s a good quarterback,” Parker said. “He got rid of the ball quick and they made some good plays. So we’ve just got to eliminate the big plays and get better on ‘D.’”

Terez A. Paylor: 816-234-4489, @TerezPaylor. Download the new Red Zone Extra app for iOS and Android devices.

  Comments