Chiefs list rookie C Mitch Morse as starter on latest depth chart

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Chiefs on Monday evening released the third depth chart of the preseason ahead of Friday night’s game against the Tennessee Titans.

And this one came with a shake-up after the second chart basically mirrored the initial chart.

Aug. 15, 2015; Glendale, AZ; Chiefs center Mitch Morse (61) during the first half of a preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Aug. 15, 2015; Glendale, AZ; Chiefs center Mitch Morse (61) during the first half of a preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Of course, the preseason depth chart remains fluid before the regular season.

But the Chiefs appear to have established a pecking order on the offensive line after shuffling starters after the preseason opener, and then the final week of training camp to  accommodate injuries to left tackle Eric Fisher (high-ankle sprain) and right guard Jeff Allen (knee).

Allen, of course, moved to right tackle after the preseason opener, but remains atop the depth chart at right guard.

The biggest shift comes at center after Eric Kush was listed atop the chart in the previous two versions. Rookie Mitch Morse now commands that spot with Kush listed as the primary backup.

The third preseason depth chart carries value because starters will rarely play in the final preseason contest. So even if Fisher and Allen aren’t available Friday, this chart offers a view of what the Chiefs are potentially thinking for the regular season.

Of note, Fisher, Grubbs, Allen and Stephenson opened organized team activities, minicamp and training camp at their respective listings. The only change from those periods is Morse now over Kush.

The key dates to remember in the coming weeks:

  • Sept. 1: Roster cuts from 90 to 75
  • Sept. 5: Roster cuts from 75 to 53
  • Sept. 6: Establish practice squad

Here is how the latest depth chart shapes out:

OFFENSE

Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, Jason Avant, Chris Conley Da’Ron Brown, L’Damian Washington, Kenny Cook, Junior Hemingway

Reaction: Conley and Brown have moved up since the previous two depth charts. Hemingway remains out after suffering a hip injury early in training camp.

Left tackle Eric Fisher, Jarrod Pughsley, Tavon Rooks

Reaction: No surprises.

Left guard Ben Grubbs, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, Paul Fanaika

Reaction: No surprises.

Center Mitch Morse, Eric Kush, Daniel Munyer

Reaction: No surprises.

Right guard Jeff Allen, Zach Fulton, Marcus Reed

Reaction: Looks like Allen won’t be moving to right tackle upon his return from a knee injury, after all.

Right tackle Donald Stephenson, Derek Sherrod, Garrett Frye

Reaction: Stephenson can play both tackle positions.

Tight end Travis Kelce, James O’Shaughnessy, Richard Gordon, Ryan Taylor, Adam Schiltz, Demetrius Harris

Reaction: No surprises.

Wide receiver Albert Wilson, De’Anthony Thomas, Frankie Hammond Jr., Fred Williams, Tello Luckett, Jeret Smith

Reaction: The battle for the final roster spots will be very interesting between Hammon, Williams and Da’Ron Brown. Also don’t overlook Junior Hemingway, who is a solid contributor on special teams.

Quarterback Alex Smith, Chase Daniel, Aaron Murray, Tyler Bray

Reaction: No surprises.

Running back Jamaal Charles, Knile Davis, Charcandrick West, Darrin Reaves

Reaction: The No. 3 running back job remains West’s job to lose. West has looked superb in two preseason contests.

Fullback  Anthony Sherman, Spencer Ware

Reaction: No surprises.

DEFENSE

Left defensive end Mike DeVito, Mike Catapano, Rakeem Nunez-Roches, David Irving

Reaction: No surprises.

Nose tackle Jaye Howard, Hebron Fangupo, Charles Tuaau, Dontari Poe

Reaction: Howard has proven a more than capable fill for Poe, who continues to recover from back surgery.

Right defensive end Allen Bailey, Nick Williams, Vaughn Martin

Reaction: No surprises.

Left outside linebacker Justin Houston, Dezman Moses, Josh Martin, Ja’Gared Davis

Reaction: No surprises.

Left inside linebacker Josh Mauga, Ramik Wilson, James-Michael Johnson

Reaction: No surprises.

Right inside linebacker Derrick Johnson, D.J. Alexander, Justin March

Reaction: No surprises. March is out recovering after recently undergoing knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus.

Right outside linebacker Tamba Hali, Dee Ford, Frank Zombo

Reaction: Look for the Chiefs to use Ford to spell Hali during the regular season.

Left cornerback Phillip Gaines, Marcus Peters, Marcus Cooper, Kenneth Penny, Kevin Short

Reaction: No surprise. Gaines has shifted to the nickel cornerback spot with Peters on the outside in the nickel package.

Right cornerback Sean Smith, Jamell Fleming, Steven Nelson, Deji Olatoye, Aaron Hester

Reaction: Phillip Gaines has lined up in this spot in place of Smith with the first-team defense as the Chiefs prepare for Smith’s three-game suspension. Fleming moves to this spot with Gaines inside in the nickel package.

Strong safety Ron Parker, Tyvon Branch, Kelcie McCray

Reaction: No surprises.

Free safety Husain Abdullah, Eric Berry, Daniel Sorensen, Sanders Commings

Reaction: The Chiefs continue to list Berry as a free safety. Berry was an first-team All-Pro and three-time Pro Bowl selection as a strong safety.

SPECIALISTS

Punter Dustin Colquitt, Cairo Santos

Reaction: None.

Kicker Cairo Santos

Reaction: None.

KO Cairo Santos, Dustin Colquitt

Reaction: None.

Long snapper James Winchester, Andrew East

Reaction: No surprises.

Holder Dustin Colquitt, Chase Daniel

Reaction: None.

Punt returner De’Anthony Thomas, Jeremy Maclin

Reaction: None.

Kick returner Knile Davis, Chris Conley

Reaction: None.

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Herbie Teope is the lead beat writer and reporter for ChiefsDigest.com. Use the contact page to reach him or find him on Twitter: @HerbieTeope.

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