Red Zone

The Chiefs and NFL by beat writers Randy Covitz and Terez Paylor

Chiefs QB Aaron Murray practices on Monday, is ineligible for PUP list

07/21/2014 3:28 PM

07/22/2014 11:47 AM

When rookie quarterback Aaron Murray took his repetitions Monday during the Chiefs’ first training camp practice at Missouri Western State University, it eliminated one option the club had to solve its quarterback dilemma.

Currently, the Chiefs have four intriguing quarterbacks — Murray, Alex Smith, Chase Daniel and Tyler Bray — and most teams only carry three on their final 53-man roster.

But one way the Chiefs could have kept all four is by placing Murray, who suffered a torn ACL in his left knee last November, on the preseason physically-unable-to-perform list.

By participating in the practice, however, Murray lost his eligibility for the PUP list, which means the Chiefs might be forced to make a decision between Bray and Daniel, because Smith and Murray are likely locks to make the roster.

For his part, Murray made it clear Sunday that he feels no residual effects from the surgery, though he suffered the injury only eight months ago.

“The knee is great,” Murray said, “it really has been feeling fantastic. Minicamp and OTAs went awesome. I really had no problems with the knee at all, and had no limitations. So I look forward to continue to get it stronger, to build confidence and get better every day.”

Murray participated in the majority of organized team activities a month ago, only missing a practice to participate in a league-mandated rookie symposium.

During OTAs, he appeared to throw unencumbered, despite the presence of a brace on his left knee, which he continued to wear on Monday and has slowly gotten used to.

“I am fine with it right now,” Murray said. “At first, the first month or so, it’s a little weird having it on. But right now I have gotten used to it. It really isn’t one of those big bulky braces that offensive linemen wear. So it’s nothing that is going to hinder me and my movement and my ability to make plays.”

Murray did his best to prove it Monday, when he connected on two deep passes in practice, one to Jerrell Jackson and the other to Frankie Hammond.

It was, he hopes, the early fruit of a laborious recovery process that he put himself through in hopes of competing for playing time as soon as possible.

“I pretty much lived in the training room for about five, six months,” Murray said. “It was non-stop rehab, taking care of my body, making sure I am getting enough rest, making sure I am eating properly and doing all of the little things. I also had some great doctors and great athletic trainers work on me during the whole process.”

To reach Terez A. Paylor, call 816-234-4489 or send email to tpaylor@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter @TerezPaylor.

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