Pre-Camp Reads: Steve Nelson Remains Key Member of Chiefs' Secondary

Taking a closer look at the third-year cornerback

Cornerback Steve Nelson, a third-round pick from Oregon State in 2015, is entering his third season with the Kansas City Chiefs.

Over the last two years, Nelson has made an impact for the Chiefs defense by playing both on the inside and outside, which isn't an easy thing to do.

Nelson was a full-time starter for the first time this past season.


Nelson won over cornerbacks coach Al Harris with his intensity and competitiveness during OTAs.

"Steve is one of my favorite guys — he works hard all the time, he's a wound-up type and he plays mad, which I love," Harris said via Terez Paylor at the Kansas City Star. "When you talk about like-minded guys in the locker room, he is one of them in there."

"Whatever I ask him to do, he does it and does it at 100 mph," Harris added.

2016 Review:

While playing primarily at the nickelback position last season, Nelson didn't come off the field very often as teams often went with three-wide receiver sets, which is par-for-the-course in today's NFL.

Nelson logged 1,013 of a possible 1,115 defensive snaps, which was the most of any Chiefs corner.

In fact, the only two guys who played more snaps for the Chiefs' defense last year than Nelson were safeties Ron Parker (1,101) and Eric Berry (1,080).

Overall, Nelson finished fourth on the team with 65 tackles and was second in passes defensed with 16.

2017 Outlook:

With such a deep group of cornerbacks, there's plenty of experience returning for the Chiefs secondary.

If Nelson can continue to build on what he showed last season, the Chiefs defense, which according to Pro Football Focus has been one of the toughest passing defenses in each of the past two seasons, will only improve.

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