The Kansas City Chiefs are going to have a tough time deciding which players they should cut ahead of the 2023 regular season, and Saturday’s win against the Cleveland Browns didn’t make things any easier. The team saw several exciting prospects make their case for a spot on Kansas City’s 53-man roster but with so few spots and so many standouts, general manager Brett Veach is in a tricky situation.
A plethora of players made their case for a chance to compete for the Chiefs in the regular season, and several had particularly strong showings against Cleveland on Saturday in Kansas City’s final exhibition matchup of the preseason.
Check out the top 11 players from the Chiefs’ win over the Browns on Saturday:
RB La'Mical Perine
Perine was the Chiefs’ second-leading rusher by yardage but managed eight yards per carry in an impressive outing that may have earned him a roster spot. Outside of his work in the ground game, Perine caught three passes on three targets, including a touchdown that helped Kansas City claw back from a 19-point deficit to secure the win.
LB Cam Jones
Jones saved his best preseason performance for the Chiefs’ final exhibition game, leading Kansas City in tackles against the Browns. His six combined tackles helped keep Cleveland at bay, though he is still a longshot to make the Chiefs’ final roster. Watch for Jones to find work on a practice squad this season.
Smith-Marsette has been the Chiefs’ top offensive player in the preseason and led Kansas City in receiving yards on Saturday after his breakout performance against the Arizona Cardinals last week. His work in August will almost guarantee that he makes a roster somewhere in the NFL, even if the Chiefs decide not to keep him.
Omenihu flashed the pass rush ability that Kansas City acquired him for on Saturday, tallying a sack against the Browns to help the Chiefs’ defensive effort. Despite the top-notch performance, Kansas City’s fans won’t be able to count on the standout lineman early in the regular season, as he is set to sit out for the Chiefs’ first six games due to suspension.
Oladokun saw a significant amount of action in the Chiefs’ preseason exhibitions and has warranted a spot on a practice squad after proving he can hang against second and third-team defenses. Expect Oladokun to be a potential elevation candidate in the regular season if a quarterback-needy team necessitates a tested veteran in a pinch.
Fatukasi is one of the newest Chiefs and did his best to snag a roster spot after being a late addition to Kansas City’s 53-man roster. He combined for five tackles in the team’s win over the Browns and has a nose for the ball that would be valuable to the Chiefs in the regular season, if they choose to keep him.
WR Justyn Ross
The Chiefs’ decision to give Ross extended looks in the preseason has officially paid off after his performance against Cleveland, and he enters the 2023 regular season as Kansas City’s most-hyped prospect. Despite being a wildcard when training camp began, Ross has a chance to become a star in Andy Reid’s offense next season.
Joshua Kaindoh managed to secure a sack in the Chiefs’ win against Cleveland but may have a hard time getting a spot on Kansas City’s 53-man roster this week. Still, his pass-rushing abilities were on full display on Saturday, and if he does make the cut, it will be because of his performance against the Browns.
WR Ty Fryfogle
Fryfogle took some time to get involved against Cleveland, but his contributions late in Saturday’s game helped Kansas City eke out a win to finish their preseason schedule. Expect Fryfogle to get looks from other teams when the Chiefs inevitably waive him this week.
Bootle’s interception on Saturday helped swing momentum back in Kansas City’s favor and was among the best plays of the contest. This third-year defensive back has become a mainstay of the Chiefs’ defense and should have no problem making contributions for Kansas City in 2023.
TE Matt Bushman
Bushman has a chance to make Kansas City’s 53-man roster given the injury to fan-favorite tight end Jody Fortson. His touchdown catch on Saturday may have been enough to make the Chiefs’ coaching staff think twice about giving other teams the option to pick Bushman up on the waiver wire.