Chiefs coach Andy Reid said Friday that running back Jamaal Charles, who is rehabbing a torn ACL, will likely miss the club’s season opener on Sunday against the San Diego Chargers at Arrowhead Stadium.
“He’s leaning more towards not playing,” Reid said. “Jamaal is probably not going to play.”
Reid said Charles, who was limited on Friday, will be listed as doubtful on the final pregame injury report. When asked who carried the load in Charles’ stead, Reid said it will be a committee. Charcandrick West is second on the team-issued depth chart behind Charles, followed by Spencer Ware and Knile Davis.
“Yeah, they’ll all play,” Reid said. “We’ll roll them in.”
Reid was asked directly if Ware, who earned the majority of first-string work throughout organized-team activities and the preseason, will be the first guy in Sunday.
“You could probably say that, yeah, but it depends on the personnel group so don’t hold me accountable,” Reid said.
West led the Chiefs in rushing last season with 634 yards and four touchdowns in 160 carries, but Ware scored more touchdowns (six) on half the carries (72) and rushed for 403 yards, all while boasting a higher yards-per-carry average (5.6).
Yet, when asked Monday if it’s too simplistic to call Ware — who outweighs West by 24 pounds on the team’s official roster — the goal-line back, Reid suggested it was.
“I’m good with all three of them in that spot,” Reid said, referring to Ware, West and presumably Davis. “I think all three are pretty good at being the dart you need to be down in there when finding the hole. All three have good lower body strength.”
Hali returns to practice
Outside linebacker Tamba Hali returned to practice Friday after missing Thursday’s session due to a personal matter. He was limited but is expected to play.
Cornerback Phillip Gaines (knee) and West (elbow) were full participants Friday and are expected to play.
The Chiefs released cornerback Julian Wilson from the practice squad and added outside linebacker Earl Okine. Okine, 26, is listed at 6 feet 6 and 290 pounds. Okine went undrafted out of Florida in 2013 and has spent time in the Arena League and with the Houston Texans and the Indianapolis Colts. He recorded five tackles in five games with the Colts a year ago.
Another roster move coming
The Chiefs need to remove a player from their roster, via a cut or trade, by 3 p.m. on Saturday. That’s when safety Eric Berry’s roster exemption runs out, which means the Chiefs will have 54 men on the roster instead of the league-mandated 53.