Dec 29, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Eric Fisher (72) prior to the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium. Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. – The Chiefs’ 2013 first-round draft pick (No. 1 overall) had a simple message following Tuesday morning’s training camp practice.
“I’m ready to go,” left tackle Eric Fisher said. “I’m out here working and that’s all that matters.”
Fisher was previously limited to individual position drills during organized team activities (OTAs) and mandatory minicamp after offseason shoulder and sports hernia procedures.
He appeared to participate fully during Tuesday’s 7-on-7 team-related drills. Fisher moved without limitations, even hitting and extending his arms against cushioned pads held by teammates during the individual position drills portion of practice.
The Chiefs remain in shorts and helmet, but there are apparently no concerns if Fisher will be cleared to participate once pads come on.
“As far as I know,” he said, “yes.”
Meanwhile, a noticeable physical aspect of the Fisher, who measures 6-foot-8, surrounded his weight.
“I’m weighing about 315,” Fisher said. “I’m happy with that weight. I think they’re (the coaching staff) happy about that weight and I’m ready to get to work.”
Fisher adds the extra pounds won’t affect his quickness.
“I think honestly I could carry more weight,” he said. “Obviously, it’s a little bit of an adjustment. I’ve probably put on 20 pounds, but I felt good out there today.”
Fisher played right tackle during his rookie campaign weighing between 295-300 pounds.
He returned to his natural left tackle position following the offseason loss of Branden Albert, who signed a free-agent deal with the Miami Dolphins.
Fisher played under the microscope in 2013 given the scrutiny surrounding any No. 1 overall pick. The spotlight arguably once again falls on Fisher, as he shifts from the right side to protect quarterback Alex Smith’s blindside.
But Fisher appeared unfazed with the attention.
“It’s not about pressure,” he said. “It’s about doing your job and blocking everything else out. I’m glad to be back in my home position, ready to get back to work like I said.”
Fisher said he’s happy to arrive before the rest of team reports Wednesday afternoon, and it gave him a head start to get adjusted.
Moreover, participating in team-related drills during Tuesday’s training camp practice under his belt has him back in familiar territory.
“It felt good.” Fisher said. “It’s back to football like I’ve been doing my whole life.”
Ready for more
Second-year wide receiver Frankie Hammond originally joined the Chiefs in 2013 as an undrafted free agent out of Florida.
He eventually spent the regular season on the practice squad, and that period helped his development as he enters his second training camp with the Chiefs.
“I get to focus more on the playbook and it takes off the pressure because you are not actually going to the games and playing in the games on that Sunday,” Hammond said of his season on the practice squad. “So it is a little extra time to just develop and focus in on things because you may see things.
“You can try different things without worrying about, ‘What if I get that wrong?’ So it lets me try inside releases instead of outside releases and see how that goes because I’ve got room for error and see how that works out, and kind of play with things and see how it works out.”
Of course, the learning curve is over as the Chiefs have training camp competition at positions Hammond plays and he’s hoping to make a mark.
“Whether they want me in the slot,” he said, “whether they want me on the outside, whether they want me on special teams as a gunner or as a returner, wherever it may be. Wherever I can fit in, I’m taking on that role and I’m going to try and excel at it.”
Hammond, who measures 6-1, 184 pounds, brings a speed element. The former Florida Gator possesses 4.44 40-yard dash speed and it could be put to good use wherever he lines up.
And with a year in the system, Hammond gained an understanding of the complex playbook and what is expected of him.
“It took a little while because all of the positions are interchangeable,” he said of learning the plays. “So you’ve got to know every position from the tight end to the receiver and almost even the fullback at some point. It took a while but like I said I just detailed it and just kept working and chipping away at it until I got it down.”
Hammond spent a lot of time working out of the slot during OTAs and mandatory minicamp.
And if that scenario holds throughout training camp, he’ll compete against Junior Hemingway, Weston Dressler, Albert Wilson and other players the Chiefs could try at the position.
For his part, Hammond said it “felt good” to finally bring what he’s learned from the practice squad, classroom and offseason workouts to the competition.
“When it all falls into place it works great,” Hammond said. “It makes me feel good as a player because of that development and all the work I put into it.”
Rookie kicker Cairo Santos has plenty of range.
“With no wind or indoors, 60 (yards),” Santos said. “If I have the wind to my back, I think 65. I can go into the wind around 50. So, it’s all about staying fresh for game day and you can hit those long ones.”
Santos, whom the Chiefs signed as an undrafted free agent out of Tulane, is a former winner of the Lou Groza National Collegiate Place-Kicker Award and College Football Performance National Kicker.
The native of Sao Paulo, Brazil is set to compete against Ryan Succop, whose career-high is a 54-yard effort in 2011.
Entering his sixth season, Succop is 9-of-17 on field goal attempts of 50 yards or more.
Day 2 rookies, quarterbacks training camp practice observations
• The Chiefs had 35 players present on the practice field. Fullback James Baker, who missed Monday due to personal reasons, wasn’t present for second straight day.
• Linebacker DeRon Furr, who was present Monday, was absent Tuesday due to a back injury.
• Running back Joe McKnight (knee, PUP list) and cornerback David Van Dyke (hamstring, PUP list) observed the morning practice from the sidelines.
• Tight end Travis Kelce (knee) and wide receiver Kyle Williams (knee) put in full practices for a second straight day.
• With just two running backs on the practice field, De’Anthony Thomas took the bulk of snaps over Charcandrick West.
• The drops that plagued receivers Monday’s morning practice were absent during Tuesday’s practice. Receivers were crisper from the previous day.
• A hint of the importance of the tight end position to the Chiefs’ offense arrived during 7-on-7 drills when quarterback Alex Smith completed a pass to Demetrius Harris, who made a fingertip catch, and then Smith hit Travis Kelce along the left sideline on the next play. Smith threaded the needle between two defenders to hit Harris on another pass earlier in practice.
• Quarterback Chase Daniel had a rough start to the morning practice, at one point misfiring on three straight passes. He also one-hopped a pass to wide receiver Darryl Surgent, who was open in the left flat. Daniel eventually settled in and had a nice pass completion to tight end Travis Kelce.
• Quarterback Tyler Bray found wide receiver Jerrell Jackson in the back of the end zone with a perfectly placed fade pass during 7-on-7 drills.
• Cornerback Phillip Gaines had two nice pass breakups against quarterbacks Alex Smith and Chase Daniel. Gaines also had a pass breakup during Monday’s morning practice.
• Wide receiver Darryl Surgent displayed concentration on a juggling catch coming across the field on a pass from quarterback Aaron Murray. The pass hit him in stride, but he bobbled it before eventually pulling it in after taking numerous running steps.