(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.)— For Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, Saturday's Week 1 Preseason game isn't so much about beating Cincinnati but instead seeing how his defense works together.
"I'm really looking for more how cohesive a unit we can be," Spagnuolo said. "With that comes effort and tackling, like I talked about, to me, communications and working together as a unit, communicating back end to front end, that's as important as anything. If we don't get that squared away in the first game, it's going to be a long season, so we don't want that."
Spagnuolo also talked about his expectations for the rookies heading into Saturday's game. He said that he's not in the business of handing rookies starting spots, instead, they must earn them.
Spagnuolo said that rookie safety Juan Thornhill has been impressive so far in camp.
"Right now he's doing a little more thinking than he is just playing and that's because he's learning the system, but I'm hoping that the natural instincts come out when he has the scheme down pat," Spagnuolo said.
Chiefs practice Thursday morning at 8:15 at Missouri Western.