- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 29, 2015

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (9-7)

OPEN CAMP: July 31, St. Joseph, Missouri.

LAST YEAR: Despite rash of early injuries, Chiefs were off to 7-3 start following win over eventual NFC champion Seahawks. Lost four of final six, missing playoffs when Ravens secured last spot ahead of Kansas City in final week of regular season. LB Derrick Johnson missed most of season with torn Achilles tendon, while SS Eric Berry was diagnosed with lymphoma, though he has been cleared to practice. QB Alex Smith had up-and-down season in first year following four-year, $68 million contract extension.

IMPORTANT ADDITIONS: WR Jeremy Maclin; S Tyvon Branch; OLs Ben Grubbs and Paul Fanaika.

IMPORTANT LOSSES: TE Anthony Fasano; WRs Dwayne Bowe and Donnie Avery.

CAMP NEEDS: All-Pro LB Justin Houston must get up to speed after skipping offseason program, then signing six-year, $101 million contract on July 15. Must also settle OL after acquiring two new guards, getting Jeff Allen back from injury and drafting Mitch Morse in second round. WRs need to sort out depth chart with Maclin only clear-cut starter. Ditto DBs with rookies Marcus Peters and Steven Nelson figuring into mix.

EXPECTATIONS: Chiefs should be competitive again in tough AFC West, especially if first-year players contribute immediately. Maclin gives them legitimate downfield threat. RB Jamaal Charles is healthy after spending much of last season banged-up. Houston is happy with new deal, which should make defense among best in league.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL


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