Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Chiefs: Linebacker Hali Could Miss Game

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Chiefs: Linebacker Hali Could Miss Game

Article excerpt

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Chiefs coaching staff didn't hold back the past week on complimenting Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel.

"He's an explosive player, makes a lot of things happen," coach Andy Reid said. "He's great at extending plays.

"From a defensive standpoint, you've got to make sure you play the whole play, and then a little. He moves around well. He's got a very strong arm."

Defensive coordinator Bob Sutton echoed Reid's assessment of the Browns' first-round pick (22nd overall) in the 2014 NFL Draft.

"Some of the throws he can make when running to his right or left and back across the field, not a lot of people can do that," Sutton said. "So he's got a great arm, his release is extremely fast. And I think, obviously, his ability to move in the pocket, to escape."

The Chiefs clearly have respect for Manziel, who has appeared in nine games with five starts in 2015, completing 116 of 191 passes for 1,364 yards and seven touchdowns against four interceptions. He has also rushed for 122 yards on 26 attempts.

But Sunday won't mark the first time the Chiefs defense squares off against a dual-threat quarterback since Reid and the current coaching staff arrived in 2013.

In the past three seasons, the Chiefs have faced the likes of Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick, Aaron Rodgers, Tyrod Taylor, Teddy Bridgewater, Terrelle Pryor, Michael Vick, and Robert Griffin III, among others.

With the exceptions of Vick's 99 yards rushing in 2013 and Wilson's 71 yards rushing in 2014, the Chiefs held their own against some of the NFL's top mobile signal callers.

"We've played over the course of time here some different guys," Sutton said. "Russell Wilson has great escape ability; Kaepernick had that kind of thing."

But even with the experience against quarterbacks capable of extending plays, the Chiefs aren't taking Manziel lightly.

"This guy is a little bit different I think and he's very nifty in there," Sutton said. "And then just his arm strength is something on the move."

While Manziel poses a threat outside of the pocket, he hasn't gouged a defense with his legs in 2015. …

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