Kansas Sports Spotlight: Key Tight Ends & Wide Receivers to Watch in the 2023 Season

Chiefs' offense led by Mahomes and Kelce aims to repeat Super Bowl win. Wide receiver roster changes offer new opportunities.

Fresh off a Super Bowl championship at the conclusion of the 2022 NFL season, the Kansas City Chiefs have an excellent chance of running it back for a repeat.

They’re always going to have one of the better offenses in the league (no matter which personnel they’re rolling with) as long as they have head coach Andy Reid in town, but the Chiefs prowess goes far beyond that: they have some of the best position players for Reid to work with, creating a matchup nightmare for whoever they face.

Chiefs Arsenal: Tight Ends

Dating back across the past decade (even before the Chiefs became a perennial Super Bowl threat with two-time NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes at quarterback), the story of Kansas City’s offensive attack begins with tight end Travis Kelce. Built like a tight end at 6-foot-5 and 250 pounds, Kelce has the slippery ability of a wide receiver, working his way open across the middle of the field and escaping the grasp of would-be tacklers, whether because he’s impossible to bring down because of his hulking stature or because of his nature-defying elusive ability in the open field.

Entering his age 34 season, Kelce already sits No. 4 on the all-time leaderboards for tight ends with 10,344 receiving yards: he’s closing in on the top spot (held by Tony Gonzalez with 15,127 yards) but has done so in 126 fewer games. As Kelce prepares for the back nine of his career, he’s already proved that he can do it all with a pair of Super Bowl championships and a legacy that seems bound for Canton, Ohio, and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Just how far he climbs up the all-time leaderboard hinges on how long he’s willing to play for, and with the duo he forms with Mahomes, we’ve already seen time and again that anything is possible.

Travis Kelce from Kansas Chiefs outside the pitch posing with a billboard behind

Chiefs Arsenal: Wide Receivers

Kansas City’s wide receivers’ room is a bit more up in the air. Marquez Valdes-Scantling looks to take on a bigger role this season after being Mahomes’ No. 3 target behind Kelce and JuJu Smith-Schuster (who left for New England in the offseason).

Part of the beauty of the Chiefs’ offense is that Mahomes makes it possible to spread the ball around. Rather than having one top target (although they do, to an extent, in Kelce), Mahomes can unlock the ceiling of each of his receivers as his ability to drive the ball to all areas of the field means that defenses have to pay attention to every receiver out there, a near-impossible task.  

One sleeper picks for the Chiefs this season is second-year wideout Justyn Ross. He lit up the charts at Clemson during his true freshman season in 2018, dicing up an Alabama secondary loaded with future NFL talents during the National Championship game, but saw his collegiate career derailed by injuries after that. 

Kansas City took a flier on him last year, signing him as an undrafted free agent, and it seems like he might finally be back healthy, as the reports have been promising out of training camp so far. Finding yet another offensive gem for pennies on the dollar will mean even more game-breaking weapons in an overflowing armory.

Get ready for an exciting 2023 sports season in Kansas, with star tight ends and wide receivers taking the stage – their performances might even sway bets on Kansas sportsbooks, where the Chiefs have the best odds of winning the Super Bowl.

Chiefs Arsenal: Patrick Mahomes

Any season preview for the Chiefs would be remiss without giving adequate laurels to Mahomes, the key cog that sets Kansas City’s otherworldly offense into motion—with that said, it’s nearly impossible to sum up No. 15’s greatness, as he’s already established himself as one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time in just five full seasons as the starter. 

A physical freak of nature who can sling a ball 60 yards downfield on a frozen rope while backpedaling out of a defender’s grip, Mahomes is a human highlight reel whose raw ability places him amongst the game’s all-time greats… even before one considers his work ethic or mental game. 

Like Kelce, the sky’s the limit for Mahomes, with his career ceiling depending on how long he wants to play and chase the records for. Ahead of his age-28 season, Mahomes could be terrorizing opposing defenses for quite a long time.