The Kansas City Chiefs could look for outside help at the tight end position after it was revealed that veteran tight end Blake Bell had surgery to repair his hip flexor injury.
The Chiefs already attempted to claim one tight end on waivers following the injury. They could potentially be in the market for a vested veteran who was recently released by the San Francisco 49ers in the most recent round of cuts. That player is TE Tanner Hudson.
An undrafted free agent out of Southern Arkansas who signed with the Tampa Bay Bucs in 2018, Hudson is entering his fifth NFL season in 2022. He’s been mostly known as a reservist and pass-catching tight end during his career, but this preseason it appears he’s taken a step up as a blocker. That’s significant because that’s Bell’s biggest area of value for Kansas City.
According to Pro Football Focus, in 24 run-blocking snaps this preseason, Hudson recorded an 87.1 run-blocking grade. That’s the second-highest run-blocking grade among tight ends this preseason with a minimum of 20 snaps. It also ranks in PFF’s “high-quality” range for grading. During the NFL’s regular season, it has actually been Hudson’s pass-blocking grades that have been best with above-average grades on the few snaps he’s played in pass protection since 2019.
Hudson spent the 2021 NFL season on the practice squad with the 49ers. It’s possible that Kansas City could add Hudson in a similar capacity for the 2022 NFL season.