Coming into the 2010 season, the Kansas City Chiefs were a mere afterthought in the minds of most NFL fans, pundits and teams.
In the second year under a new regime led by GM Scott Pioli and HC Todd Haley, KC was scheduled to show measured improvement on both sides of the ball and the potential for a playoff run in 2011. After a 3-0 start to the season, though, the calendar's been thrown out the window, and whispers of post-season play are resonating through Kansas City.
The Chiefs' hot start should be attributed to nothing else than the incredible improvement shown by the defensive side of the ball thus far in 2010. After ranking 29th in points allowed last season, KC stands eighth this year, surrendering 14 points to San Diego and Cleveland, and only 10 to San Francisco (seven of which came on the final play when the game was out of reach).
Though new Defensive Coordinator Romeo Crennel's impact cannot go unnoticed, the players are the ones frustrating opponents and leading the team to wins on the field. With a solid mix of talent returning, new and rejuvenated, KC's defense has been one of the NFL's best in the first month of the season.
If KC is able to make an unexpected run to the playoffs this season, its defense will be the unit leading the way. Meet the players of the Chiefs' 2010 defense, the most improved unit in the NFL.