Running back Charcandrick West, like the majority of people in Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday, watched in disbelief as Jamaal Charles writhed on the ground clutching his right knee.
West assumed Charles would simply pop back up, but was soon proven wrong as Charles was helped off the field and into the locker room. The team announced after the 18-17 loss to the Bears that preliminary reports indicate a torn ACL.
“Charles is one of the toughest guys in the NFL, so I was thinking he was gonna get up,” West said. “To see that, it brought tears to my eyes. It’s a heartbreaking moment.”
The intensity was magnified for West, who likely will be called upon if the reports are true about Charles’ knee. He has been splitting time with Knile Davis, but the two have combined for just 75 of the team’s 439 running back yards so far this season. Charles contributed the other 364, which included 58 this Sunday.
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West said both players expect to continue splitting carries, but that they do not have any specific orders yet. He is currently listed third on the depth chart.
“We haven’t heard anything,” West said. “They told us — me and Knile — we’re both going to play, we both have to be ready to step up. We know our big brother went down, so it’s time for us to step up.”
Coach Andy Reid was hesitant to commit to a depth chart update, but said the two would continue to split time. West finished the day ranked second in rushing yards behind Charles with 31 in seven carries, and Davis carried the ball twice for 2 yards.
“I’m not saying who is or is not the feature guy, but we need both of them,” Reid said. “Both their games are different. We’ll just see how that goes. You saw both of them played today, so we’ll got back to the drawing board on that and get it right.”
The team also used De’Anthony Thomas in the run game on Sunday for one carry of 5 yards. He entered the game with negative yardage on the season, but now he has 3 yards in five carries on the season.