So far this offseason, we've taken a look at some of the top plays from the Kansas City Chiefs in almost every aspect of the game.
We've talked offense, defense and special teams.
In case you missed any of those articles, you can find them here:
Now, we're going to give credit to those who often don't get enough credit—the guys away from the ball making the blocks that allow those big plays to happen.
The players involved don't get any credit in a box score or fill up a stat sheet for making these blocks, but when you flip on the film and diagnose the maturation of a play and what made it successful, that's where you'll find these guys.
Our No. 5 block of the season came from several different special teams players on De'Anthony Thomas' 81-yard punt return touchdown against the Oakland Raiders.
No. 5 – DAT's return vs. Oakland (Week 15)
As much burst and acceleration as Thomas showed throughout his rookie season, even he can't make plays like he did against the Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium all by himself.
On this return, Kelcie McCray had the initial block on the gunner, which allowed Thomas to plant and drive up the field without having to make any lateral movement. This is what allowed Thomas to get to full speed as fast as he did.
Then it was Daniel Sorensen and Charcandrick West who sealed the lane for Thomas to get into open space.
Sorensen raced his way down the field starting from 10 yards off the inside shoulder all the way to the outside shoulder of the player he was responsible for blocking on the return. This gave him the proper position to seal the outside release for Thomas as he made his way down the field.
Frank Zombo actually fell down in the backfield as he went after the punt, but he got to his feet and raced down the field and helped West with his key block to free up Thomas on his initial burst into open field.
Finally, Junior Hemingway got out in front of Thomas and made sure the punter wasn't going to keep this return from resulting in a touchdown.
It was a fantastic display of blocking all the way around that allowed Thomas to get this touchdown, which only he will get credit for in a box score.
No. 4 – Knile Davis run vs. New England (Week 4)
The development of second-year player and former No. 1 overall pick Eric Fisher was a storyline all throughout the season. This next play showed the athleticism that's often talked of Fisher and his ceiling at left tackle.
The No. 4 block of the season came on Knile Davis' 16-yard run against the New England Patriots on Monday Night Football.
The Chiefs line up strong to the right with both tight ends, Anthony Fasano and Travis Kelce, in line to the right. The play call is an off-tackle run to the left, behind Eric Fisher.
Fisher gets a chip on the defensive end who was lined up to his outside shoulder and pushes him back down the line to help seal the edge on the run, but then gets out to the second level and takes outside linebacker Jamie Collins and also seals him off to the inside.
Fullback Anthony Sherman took down the initial defender while Rodney Hudson did a good job taking care of any pursuit coming down the line.
Fisher showed quick feet and some strength to punch the defensive end and still find his target at the next level. This is a nice example of what Fisher is capable of doing that many left tackles simply don't have the athleticism to pull off.
No. 3 – Rodney Hudson in San Diego (Week 7)
Our No. 3 block of the season is every big man's dream, the chance to get out in space and hit a little guy.
Center Rodney Hudson was able to live out that dream on the road against the San Diego Chargers in Week 7. It came on a third-and-4 play late in the third quarter, when the Chiefs dialed up a screen pass out to the left to De'Anthony Thomas.
Hudson was able to get out in space and as he zeroed in on Chris Davis, the Chargers rookie defensive back. Thomas looked like he was easily going to be stopped short on this key third down in the second half.
That was until Hudson came barreling into Davis with a pancake block, giving Thomas the ability to get around him and use some impressive quickness and footwork to pick up the first down along the sideline.
It was not only a highlight block for Hudson because of how he demolished Davis, but that was also the drive the Chiefs scored the go-ahead touchdown on an 11-yard touchdown reception from Anthony Sherman. Hudson's block on third down helped sustain that drive, which ended up being crucial in the Chiefs' 23-20 win over the 5-1 (at the time) Chargers.
No. 2 – Knile Davis vs. Miami (Week 3)
The No. 2 block of the season came on a nice play design from the Chiefs offense on a 21-yard touchdown run from Knile Davis against the Miami Dolphins back in Week 3.
It was left tackle Eric Fisher pulling around and taking on the defensive end while right guard Zach Fulton sealed off the inside lane with a nice block on the defensive tackle.
If you're drawing up a play that running backs would love to see, this is the kind of lane they want to see as they burst through to the second level of a defense.
Davis had the upper hand as he broke through the line of scrimmage thanks to fantastic blocks from Fisher and Fulton.
No. 1 – Travis Kelce vs. Earl Thomas (Week 11)
There are a lot of great things about the play that has our No. 1 block of the season, which came against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 11.
Initially, De'Anthony Thomas' motion before the snap on a jet sweep-like action affected the Seahawks linebackers, who slid to their left before and right after the snap, probably in hopes of not being late to catch Thomas on the edge if he was given the ball.
Consequently, the linebackers sliding gave right tackle Ryan Harris and right guard Zach Fulton the proper angles to set key blocks on what resulted in a Jamaal Charles' 28-yard run.
But Travis Kelce laying out Earl Thomas at the second level is the most memorable part of this play and was the most memorable block of the season.
As if taking down a founding member of the "legion of boom" wasn't enough on its own for anyone, the fact that it was Kelce, who had to answer questions throughout the season of his ability to block because his abilities as a pass catcher were easily recognizable, made it that much sweeter.
Kelce finished the season ranked as Pro Football Focus' No. 1 run blocking tight end in the NFL.