Chiefs DL Chris Jones demolishes Cardinals LT D.J. Humphries for sack

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D.J. Humphries of the Cardinals finished seventh in Touchdown Wire’s most recent ranking of the NFL’s top 11 offensive tackles. Humphries did so by allowing just three sacks, two quarterback hits, and 18 quarterback hurries in the 2020 season — he also improved as a run blocker. The point we’re trying to make here is that D.J. Humphries is a very good player.

What D.J. Humphries is not, is a player who could handle Chiefs defensive lineman Chris Jones on a preseason sack of Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray. Jones, who had 7.5 sacks, 23 quarterback hits, and 39 quarterback hurries in 2020, is starting up where he left off last season. And on this play, Jones made Humphries look like a Division III rookie.

Yeah, Humphries is still wondering what happened there. Jones’ sack at defensive end is significant, because the Chiefs have planned to move Jones outside more frequently this season to take advantage of his ridiculous athleticism. General manager Brett Veach, head coach Andy Reid, and defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo are confident that a most-of-the-time defensive tackle who had just 47 snaps outside the tackles last season, and 362 in his NFL career, has the chops to make it happen as an edge-rusher.

“He is an imposing player inside,” Spagnuolo said in June, per Charles Goldman of Chiefs Wire. “We all know that. Hopefully, we will gain something on the edge. When somebody changes a position, obviously the first part of it is the mental part of it. Chris is working through that. That’s important when you change a position. It’s just not that easy to pick up a whole new spot. There are some different things with a defensive end.

“He’ll play out there a little bit. We’ll move him back inside when we have to.”

Not that this has taken anything away from Jones’ disruptiveness on the inside — in Kansas City’s preseason debut against the 49ers last week, Jones got a sack of quarterback Trey Lance by forklifting right guard Daniel Brunskill right into the pocket.

Jones has been a great player for a long time — I made the argument that he should have been the Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl LIV — and it appears that the addition of more outside reps will make even more of a problem for every defense the Chiefs face in 2021.

“Listen man, I’ve been eager to get back on the field and hit someone else other than Pat Mahomes and the freaking offense,” Jones said this week. “Because Coach Reid’s play calling is farfetched. You know, running screens, boots, and you might come back with a jab-duel, it’s different. So, to be able to play somebody that’s regular is fun.”

Well, most every quarterback is “regular” when compared to Patrick Mahomes. It could also be said that most defensive linemen are pretty ordinary when compared to Chris Jones.