Chiefs' FB Sherman more than a blocker

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- If you were looking for a most unlikely candidate to lead the Kansas City Chiefs in receiving, even after just one game, you’d couldn’t have done much better than fullback Anthony Sherman. The fullback in Andy Reid’s offense, as in many in the modern NFL, doesn’t have a huge role and indeed Sherman played on less than half of the offensive snaps in last week’s win against Jacksonville.

But Sherman wound up tied for the team lead in pass catches. Sherman and Dwayne Bowe each had four receptions, but Sherman had more yardage than Bowe and delivered the longest scrimmage play of the game, a 26-yarder catch and run.

Sherman’s receptions against the Jaguars weren’t fancy. Most were just dumps when quarterback Alex Smith was looking to get rid of the ball. The Chiefs don’t have many plays designed expressly for Sherman.

Sherman, at 5-10 and 242, is short and squatty like the typical fullback, but he’s quickly proving he can be more than just a battering ram on runs by Jamaal Charles or one of their other featured backs.

“You hear 'fullback' and you think he’s a big bruiser type of guy, which you need on your football team," offensive coordinator Doug Pederson said. “But when you study film, you see him run around, there’s some athleticism there."

The Chiefs acquired Sherman after the draft in a trade with Arizona. With the Cardinals, he was little more than a lead blocker, as he was handed or thrown the ball a total of 14 times in two seasons.

“I’m definitely more involved here," Sherman said.

Sherman won’t finish the season leading the Chiefs in receiving. If he does, they’re in serious trouble.

But he's more than an afterthought on a team that doesn’t have a lot of great skill players.

“He’s got great hands and he’s a good route runner," Pederson said. “If we continue to find ways to get him out in space and utilize him, we’re going to do that. He’s a big part of this offense."