Events that led to the Chiefs’ signing of safety Brock Vereen late last week were a bit bizarre.
Vereen retired from the Patriots. He unretired a day later and was cut. But Aug. 17, on his 24th birthday, Vereen signed with the Chiefs. Officially, the Chiefs claimed him off waivers.
“Obviously, it’s not a standard way of going about things,” Vereen said. “There were some issues that needed to be addressed. Everything’s good and right now I’m happy to be a Chief.”
Vereen, a member of the Patriots’ practice squad last season, wouldn’t specify what led to the strange sequence of events last week.
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“There was miscommunication,” Vereen said. “I wish the Patriots well.”
Vereen wasn’t with the Chiefs in time for last weekend’s preseason game at Los Angeles but figures to see action on Saturday at Chicago, his first team in the NFL.
“He’s coming into that time in camp when it’s not quite the same as when we were in training camp,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “He’s a talented guy, and that’s why (general manager John Dorsey) brought him in.”
An All-Big Ten selection at Minnesota, Vereen was the Bears’ fourth-round draft selection in 2014. He appeared in 19 games over two seasons, including four starts as a rookie. Vereen was waived by Bears and signed by the Vikings in 2015 and finished the year on the Patriots’ practice squad.
There was a connection in New England. Vereen’s older brother, Shane, caught 11 passes in the Patriots’ Super Bowl victory over the Seahawks two seasons ago. Shane Vereen now plays for the Giants.
Pro football runs in the family. Their father, Henry Vereen, was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1979 and had a successful career as a wide receiver in the Canadian Football League.
Football isn’t the only family business. Stage actor and dancer Ben Vereen is a first cousin once removed.
At this point, Vereen has no plans to retire. Again.
“Anybody who comes into the league thinks they’re going to be a hall of famer and play for 20 years with the same team,” Brock Vereen said. “Obviously that /is almost never the case. But you can’t waste time looking behind you. You’ve got to stay positive and focus on the future.”