Updates from Monday, Aug. 25
Herbie Teope of the Associated Press has the latest on Charles' status:
Chiefs S Eric Berry (heel), RB Jamaal Charles (foot) are expected to practice this week.— Herbie Teope (@HerbieTeope) August 25, 2014
Updates from Friday, Aug. 22
ESPN's Ed Werder has news regarding Charles' status for the Chiefs' next preseason game:
Andy Reid not expecting Jamaal Charles, Dwayne Bowe to play. He joked if not playing in preseason OK for Adrian Peterson, fine for Jamaal.— Ed Werder (@Edwerderespn) August 22, 2014
Updates from Thursday, Aug. 21
Terez Paylor of the Kansas City Star has an update on Charles' status:
Jamaal Charles returned to practice today. Got some scout team work too— Terez A. Paylor (@TerezPaylor) August 21, 2014
Paylor and Randy Covitz added more on the star running back:
Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles returned to practice on Thursday, but not with the starters.
Charles, who did not make the trip to Carolina for last Sunday’s preseason game because of an off-field foot injury, worked the second team and scout team in Thursday’s practice.
“We’ve seen him all preseason, of course, and he’s one of the best going,” said defensive coordinator Bob Sutton. “He gives us a good look in there. Glad to see him out there, period.”
The Chiefs did not say whether Charles, who missed practice on Tuesday and Wednesday, would play on Saturday night against Minnesota.
Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs/article1270269.html#storylink=cpy
Updates from Tuesday, Aug. 19
Adam Teicher of ESPN reported on Jamaal Charles' injured foot at Chiefs practice on Tuesday:
Charles won't practice this afternoon. Neither will berry or bowe. Bowe has sore quad— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) August 19, 2014
Jamaal Charles is with chiefs as they go thru morning walk through— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) August 19, 2014
Updates from Monday, Aug. 18
NBC Sports' Josh Alber provides a statement from Chiefs head coach Andy Reid discussing Jamaal Charles' injury status:
With Jamaal Charles, he twisted his foot and kind of freak thing. It didn't happen at practice. It was after practice [when] we were leaving and so, we held him out. Precautionary measures. I think he's going to be fine but I left him back at home. We'll go from there but he's doing well.
Reid later expanded on how Charles injured his foot, via Terez A. Paylor of The Kansas City Star:
I'll just tell you what happened. He was actually carrying a box down the dorms, and he came down the grassy slope there and just tweaked his foot, rolled his foot over on the curb. It was that simple. ...
... He was hurting that night. The next day he woke up and he was feeling a little bit better, and he was feeling better today, so we're optimistic about it. Initially, there was a little concern. But they got all the stuff done on it, MRIs and all that stuff, so everything is clear.
Adam Teicher of ESPN.com passed along the news:
Jamaal Charles will not play tonight for #Chiefs vs. Carolina. Hearing it's a bruised foot. Didn't make trip to Charlotte— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) August 17, 2014
Teicher later reported more on Charles' status: "The Chiefs didn't appear concerned that the injury was serious. The plan was to get Charles ready for the next exhibition game on Saturday night against the Minnesota Vikings at Arrowhead Stadium."
Losing Charles for a significant period of time would be a hammer blow for the Chiefs, but fortunately this does not sound overly serious.
The three-time Pro Bowler rushed for 1,287 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2013 to go along with 693 yards and seven touchdowns receiving. His 1,980 yards from scrimmage accounted for 35.3 percent of Kansas City's total offensive output, which was the highest percentage for any one player, per ESPN Stats & Info:
Jamaal Charles led the Chiefs in Rush yds, Rush TD, Rec, Rec yds & Rec TD in 2013. He had an NFL-best 35.3% of his team's yds from scrimmage— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) July 23, 2014
As Sports Illustrated's Chris Burke said during the summer, plenty of running backs in this league are interchangeable. Charles is not one of those running backs:
Finding a decent RB isn't all that hard. Finding a great one can be borderline impossible. Jamaal Charles is a great one.— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurke_SI) July 23, 2014
The drop-off between Charles and his backups, Knile Davis and De'Anthony Thomas, is significant. Alex Smith is a steady quarterback, but without a consistent running game he may run into major problems. Without having to respect the ground threat nearly as much, opposing defenses would key on the Chiefs receivers, none of whom had more receiving yards than Charles in 2013.
However, Charles' absence means Davis and Thomas will get extended reps in the preseason—especially in Sunday's contest. More time with the first team is not a bad thing when the games don't count.
Kansas City had one of the quickest turnarounds in NFL history between 2012 and 2013, going from 2-14 to an 11-5 finish and a playoff berth in Andy Reid's first year as head coach. The wild-card collapse against the Indianapolis Colts (45–44) put a damper on an unexpectedly good campaign.
Building on that progress will be hard to do without Charles on the field. He's arguably the Chiefs' most important player. If he's out any longer than initial reports are indicating, the playoffs could be out of reach in the extremely competitive AFC West.