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Chiefs sign backup after linebacker Houston misses practice

Starting outside linebacker Justin Houston merely had a stomach bug and he missed only one Chiefs practice over the weekend. But even that brief absence was enough to send the Chiefs scurrying for backup help.

Edgar Jones, who went to college at Southeast Missouri State before playing five years with the Baltimore Ravens, answered the call. He signed with the Chiefs and participated in their walkthrough practice this morning at Missouri Western State University.

“He’s trying to get his feet on the ground and learn his way around the campus and learn his way around the playbook,” coach Romeo Crennel said. “We’ve already started that process.”

Before signing Jones, the Chiefs had only Andy Studebaker, Gabe Miller and Cameron Sheffield as backups for starters Houston and Tamba Hali.

“It was a little thin,” Crennel said. “We had five guys lined up there and then when Justin went down with the stomach problem he had, now we’ve got four guys and not only are they playing defense but they’re playing special teams as well. With the heat the way it is and the pads for the first timer, we kind of felt we had to add a guy to help us in that area.”

Studebaker started five games for the Chiefs last season but was later replaced as a starter by Houston. He is one of the Chiefs main special teams players.

“I think Andy has value on defense,” Crennel said. “Andy has come into the games and played very well. So far I’ve seen some improvement in his attitude and what he’s been able to get done on the field. I like Andy a lot and I’m excited about Andy. I think he’s a good guy for this team.”

Sheffield and Miller were drafted by the Chiefs in the fifth round, Sheffield in 2010 and Miller last year. Each missed all of his rookie season, so the Chiefs have been patient with both players.

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