The folks at Pro Football Focus released their annual rankings of the top players from the 2017 season this week, with six members of the Kansas City Chiefs making the list – the second-most of any team.
The first to appear on the list at No. 34 was rookie tailback Kareem Hunt, who led the league in rushing with 1,327 yards on the ground.
Kareem Hunt was the highest-ranked offensive rookie for his performance during the regular season, even if that race was incredibly close and he was ultimately jumped in the 101 by Kamara, who had a better postseason performance. Hunt led the league in rushing, but also in yards after contact with 839, an average of 3.1 yards per carry after first contact.
PFF Elite Stat: Hunt forced 61 missed tackles in the running game, most in the NFL.
Checking in at No. 50 was tight end Travis Kelce following a second-straight 1,000-yard season. Kelce caught 83 passes for 1,038 yards and a career-high eight touchdowns on the year.
There may be no better evidence for the impact of Travis Kelce than what happened to the Kansas City Chiefs in the playoffs against Tennessee from the moment he left the game. Kelce is one of the game's true matchup problems on offense, and once again was a dynamic receiving weapon for the Chiefs, with Alex Smith's newfound aggressiveness perfectly tailored to take advantage of his ability to beat coverage. Kelce led all tight ends in broken tackles with 16, six more than any other player at the position.
PFF Elite Stat: Kelce ranked third in yards per route run (2.03) among tight ends.
At No. 64 was defensive tackle Chris Jones, who tallied 32 tackles (22 solo), 6.5 sacks, seven passes defensed and four forced fumbles in his second season in the league.
The Kansas City Chiefs nailed their draft pick when they selected Chris Jones in the second round of the 2016 NFL draft. Jones went from strong to quite strong in his second season, improving on what was already a strong rookie performance against both the run and as a pass-rusher. He notched 38 total pressures over the season and had games during the year in which he was nearly unblockable, elevating himself into the realm of the best linemen in the game.
PFF Elite Stat: Jones was 18th among interior defenders with a pass-rush productivity of 7.5.
Wide receiver Tyreek Hill appeared at No. 72 in the rankings. The fleet-footed Hill took on a larger role on offense this season and flourished, catching 75 passes for 1,183 yards and seven touchdowns.
The emergence of Tyreek Hill helped transform Alex Smith and the Kansas City offense into a different beast in 2017. Hill may be the fastest offensive threat in the game when true football game speed is considered and was able to generate huge plays against even the league's best corners this season. Smith had a passer rating of 130.5 when throwing Hill's way in 2017, the best mark in the league by more than 10 points.
PFF Elite Stat: Hill led the league in yards gained on deep passes (20-plus air yards) with 628.
Checking in at No. 86 was linebacker Justin Houston, who registered 58 tackles (46 solo), 9.5 sacks and 16 tackles for loss on the season.
Justin Houston at his best is one of the best defenders in the game, and while he wasn't quite at that level this season, we did see glimpses of it throughout the year for the Kansas City Chiefs. He had five games over the year with five or more total pressures and generated 44 defensive stops over the season, including two in the wild-card game against the Titans.
PFF Elite Stat: Houston's pressure total from the left side of 51 was top-10 among all edge defenders.
Quarterback Alex Smith also made the list, appearing at No. 92. Smith led the NFL with a 104.7 passer rating and set personal bests in passing yards (4,042) and passing touchdowns (26) last season.
Had Alex Smith avoided a midseason slump for the Kansas City Chiefs, he would have been much higher this list, because his play to begin and end the year was spectacular and the best he has played in the NFL. Smith ended the season with an overall PFF grade of 87.2 despite that midseason lull and led the league with a passer rating of 131.4 on deep passes.
PFF Elite Stat: Smith's passer rating on deep passes in 2017 was 131.4, which stood 19.8 points higher than any other signal-caller in the league and was by far his career-best.
Check out the full rankings here.