A nightmare scenario for fans of the Chiefs has just taken place. Jamaal Charles, the superstar running back that so much of their production came through, was carted off the field with an apparent leg injury.
It was unclear where exactly the injury was on his leg, but if he had to be carted off, there's a good chance it's fairly significant.
Losing Charles for any significant period of time would be crippling for the Chiefs. The Chiefs were hoping to make a return trip to the postseason in 2011. Those hopes are gone now if Charles is going to miss time.
The Chiefs do have good depth in the backfield. Veteran Thomas Jones will now get the lion's share of carries. Dexter McCluster, the running back/wide receiver hybrid, will also become a bigger part of the offensive game plan.
Le'Ron McClain, who is generally more of a fullback, has some experience being a featured guy in Baltimore, so he might also be part of the group asked to fill-in for Charles.
As nice as it is to have those guys behind him, it won't be enough to keep Kansas City in the playoff race.
Charles was only listed as questionable to return to the game after he was carted off, but I don't know that anyone believes that. Charles appeared to be seriously injured. If he doesn't miss any time, I would be very surprised.
Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star may have said it best when he said the following on his Twitter:
If it's anywhere near as serious as it looked, happy for Jamaal Charles that he signed that extension last year. #Chiefs
Without explicitly saying it, he's hinting at the fact that Charles might be done for a long time, which would in turn jeopardize any contract he were to sign after this.
Leave it to Mellinger to also inject some humor in this situation, also via his Twitter feed:
Of all the #Chiefs nightmare scenarios, "Jamaal Charles carted off after collision with mascot" is one I hadn't considered. Wow.
If Chiefs fans are going to cope with Charles' injury, I would suggest they join Mellinger in trying to use humor. Sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying.
LIFE HURTS. THIS INJURY UPDATE BROUGHT TO YOU BY DICKIES.