Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles, still recovering from knee and ankle injuries, was one of four starters who did not practice on Wednesday.
Charles, tight end Anthony Fasano and outside linebacker Tamba Hali, who both have knee injuries, participated in the morning walk-through, and they are considered “day-to-day” leading into Sunday’s game against Oakland at Arrowhead Stadium.
Defensive lineman Allen Bailey, who missed last week’s loss at Arizona, is still completing concussion protocol, and wide receiver Junior Hemingway returned to practice on Wednesday after being cleared from a concussion.
Later, the Chiefs said rookie cornerback Phillip Gaines suffered a concussion Wednesday and left practice. Linebacker Joe Mays (knee) and wide receiver Donnie Avery (groin) also were limited participants in practice.
Run defense issues
The Chiefs have fallen another spot to 31st in the NFL in rush defense after allowing 100-plus yards to a running back for four straight weeks.
In successive weeks, the Chiefs surrendered 124 yards to Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch, 112 yards to Oakland’s Latavius Murray, 168 yards to Denver’s C.J. Anderson, and 100 yards to Arizona’s Kerwynn Williams, who had not carried the ball in an NFL game until Sunday.
“We haven’t done very well there,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “Some of it is scheme. We have to a better job with some things there. Some of it is the fits we’re doing up front … and linebackers playing downhill football. And tackling. I thought we did a little better job on the tackling part, but we have to take care of those seams.
“It doesn’t take much for an NFL running back to hit a seam. You have to narrow those things down and make sure you can free up your hands to make the tackle.”
Kelce replays the fumble
Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, who lost a critical fourth-quarter fumble on a replay reversal against Arizona, remains adamant that he maintained control of the football when he was tackled before it was poked free.
“I felt like I rolled over on my back with the ball in my right hand, and when I brought it to my left, the guy hit it out again,” he said. “It was loose before I hit the ground. … I was transferring it … I wasn’t getting ready to celebrate or anything like that. We were trying to get the lead … it’s not like I was doing a showmanship-type deal. I tried to get it to my left hand to secure the ball.”
The Chiefs have surrendered 19 sacks in their last four games, including 11 in the last two games, but quarterback Alex Smith said he hasn’t lost faith in his offensive line.
“It’s a part of the game,” Smith said. “We’ve had our fair share of games where I’ve been very clean. There’s a lot that goes into that. Those five guys up front take the brunt of it, but it’s on all of us, myself included. A lot of that is little things … from my perspective, movement in the pocket, when to get rid of the ball.”