We know Kansas City Chiefs veteran defensive end Frank Clark entered training camp at a lower playing weight, alcohol-free, and with a chip on his shoulder after his offseason meeting with head coach Andy Reid. The new-look Clark has taken the field in St. Joseph, Missouri dialed in, and his teammates are taking notice.
“He’s locked in, man. Probably the most locked-in that I’ve ever seen him,” fellow defensive end Mike Danna said of Clark to the media on Aug. 1, the first day of padded practices for the Chiefs.
Danna’s comments about Clark are supported by reporters on-scene for training camp practices, as well as videos from the practices.
“Frank Clark looks leaner, seems to have a little more pep in his step,” Nick Roesch of the Chiefs Wire wrote.
The hype surrounding Clark this summer is no doubt an unexpected but welcomed addition to training camp. With Kansas City adding George Karlaftis via the draft and signing Carlos Dunlap early on in training camp, if Clark can bounce back and be a true top-tier NFL pass rusher once again then Kansas City’s pass rush unit can enter elite territory in 2022.
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Clark Playing Mentor to Chiefs’ Youth
Clark being dialed in at training camp doesn’t just pertain to his own play. He’s also focused on helping his teammates, specifically the rookie first-rounder in his position room.
“We got some young guys in,” Clark told the media on July 30. “I got George (Karlaftis) who’s a first-round guy who’s got to be ready to play. So at the end of the day, part of the things I’m doing at practice is helping him understand the system faster.
“As a rookie, I know how tough it can be coming in when you got all these different things going on. You got people – your family, friends – they (are) all on your back and stuff like that. And for a guy like George, a Big 10 guy, I’m a Michigan guy, so we got that Big 10 bond. I just want to see him be successful. When he lines up on the other side of me, inside, wherever he lines up, I just want to see him be successful at the end of the day.”
KC Sports Network shared a video of Clark working with Karlaftis and a couple of the team’s other defensive ends at practice on Aug. 1.
Twitter Reacts to Danna’s Comments
Clark was a hot topic on Twitter due to his presser over the weekend and Danna’s comments.
“If Frank Clark could be a decent starting DE for the Chiefs this year things could get interesting,” Eric Eager of PFF wrote.
“All the Frank Clark stuff today is really interesting. It would be a huge deal for the Chiefs if he had a bounce back season I’m really interested in watching him this preseason at his new weight,” Seth Keysor of The Athletic wrote.
“Frank Clark out here trying to become one of my favorite players by being real as hell,” another user wrote.
“So incredibly impressed by the maturity shown by #Chiefs DE Frank Clark this offseason. These changes that he’s made will better his life both inside and outside of football. Excited to see it all in action this season,” Charles Goldman of the Chiefs Wire wrote.