KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas City Chiefs defensive lineman is staking his claim as “Run Nation” in Kansas City.
Fourth-year defensive tackle Khalen Saunders spoke with great fervor ahead of the Chiefs’ Sunday showdown with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars are fifth in the league in yards per rush attempt.
“I always make the joke Chris (Jones) got the Sack Nation and I credit myself as the Run Nation, me and (Derrick) Nnadi and the big guys in there. Because Sack Nation – I love it, I love Sack Nation – I got to be a part of it in this last game, finally.”
Last week vs. the Tennesse Titans, the Chiefs held Titans star running back Derrick Henry to 115 yards and two touchdowns while the Titans rushed for 172 yards total. The Titans average 142 rushing yards per game.
Saunders was also part of some big defensive stops late in the game to seal the win.
Jaguars running back Travis Etienne is sixth in the league with 680 rushing yards a game with four touchdowns to boot.
Saunders said any run game will have to go through him.
“I credit myself as Kansas City’s run defense. I plan on – whoever hears it, I don’t care. If you want to run the ball, it’s going to have to be through me, and I’ve been working my tail off to make sure that I can defend that as best as I can. And you know the pass rush will come but run – everybody runs the ball, so we’ve got to be getting them in the passing situations.”