The Chiefs were making no apologies for having five players selected to this season’s Pro Bowl despite having a 2-13 record, which is tied for worst in the NFL.
“You’re talking about five really good players going to Hawaii,’’ said punter Dustin Colquitt, one of the five players. “Every guy we have that’s going, (opponents) have to account for. It doesn’t matter the record. You have to look at the individual.’’
Outside linebacker Tamba Hali and strong safety Eric Berry are starters for the Jan. 27 Pro Bowl in Honolulu. Colquitt, inside linebacker Derrick Johnson and running back Jamaal Charles also made it.
“Hats off to those guys for what they were able to accomplish,’’ coach Romeo Crennel said. “A well-deserved reward. There is a bright spot in the season that we have guys people respect the way they play, the way they conduct themselves.’’
Each player was selected to the second Pro Bowl of his career except for Colquitt, who will be going for the first time. Colquitt is ninth in the league in punting average at 46.9 but is far and away the leader in punts downed inside the 20-yard line with 42. He has only seven touchbacks.
He said his first call after learning the news was to his father, former Steelers punter Craig Colquitt.
“I had to rub it in,’’ Colquitt said. “He’s rubbed in the Super Bowl rings for so long.’’Crennel on crutches
Crennel moved around the Chiefs’ practice facility on crutches after having his sore knee drained by doctors. He said he was unsure if he would be off crutches in time for Sunday’s game against the Broncos in Denver.
If he’s still using the crutches, Crennel would coach the game from the pressbox rather than on the sideline.
“If I go upstairs I’ll be talking to (defensive coordinator Gary Gibbs), and I’ll be talking to (offensive coordinator Brian Daboll), and I can get word to (special teams coach Tom McMahon), if I need to, and then just call the game from up there, make critical decisions from upstairs,’’ Crennel said. “Some people like to go upstairs and call the game and look at the game because they feel can see more than they can on the sideline. But I’ve always been a sideline guy myself.’’
Crennel said he has had problems with the knee on and off during the season.
“It blew up on me last night,’’ he said. “When I went to the doctor, he took quite a bit of fluid.
“It should be OK. I’ve been icing. I just have to go slow initially.”Injury report
Hali and Charles both returned to practice after missing work the day before because of flu symptoms.
But center Ryan Lilja (back), defensive end Tyson Jackson (toe), offensive tackles Branden Albert (back) and Donald Stephenson (illness), tight end Tony Moeaki (concussion), wide receiver Terrance Copper (knee) and linebacker Cory Greenwood (illness) did not practice.
Wide receiver Josh Bellamy (ankle) and safety Abe Elam (quad) were listed as limited participants while Berry (hand), offensive linemen Jon Asamoah (thumb), Russ Hochstein (back) and Rich Ranglin (knee) were full participants.