Melvin Gordon III Signs Chiefs Practice-Squad Contract After Broncos Exit

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVNovember 28, 2022

DENVER, COLORADO - NOVEMBER 20: Melvin Gordon III #25 of the Denver Broncos walks off the field after fumbling the football in the second quarter of a game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Empower Field At Mile High on November 20, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

Running back Melvin Gordon III is remaining in the AFC West.

Gordon told ESPN's Jeremy Fowler that he will be signing with the Kansas City Chiefs after being waived by the Denver Broncos earlier this month. Gordon told Mike Klis of 9News that he will be joining the practice squad.

The University of Wisconsin product is expected to be on the active roster "soon" ahead of the season's "stretch run," per Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.

Gordon appeared in 10 games for the Broncos this season, tallying 90 carries for 318 yards and two touchdowns to go with 25 catches for 223 yards.

He figured to be the primary back after Javonte Williams suffered a season-ending ACL injury in Week 4, but he posted single-digit carries in five of his last seven games and lost some time to Latavius Murray.

The biggest problem for Gordon was ball security. He fumbled five times this season, one of which came at the goal line in the season opener against the Seattle Seahawks and another of which was returned for a touchdown in a Week 4 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders.

Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett told reporters Gordon's most recent fumble was "unacceptable" before the team released him.

At his best, the 29-year-old was a Pro Bowler in 2016 and 2018 when he played for the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers. He also ran for a career-high 1,105 yards in 2017 for the Chargers and has proved capable of picking up yardage between the tackles and beating defenders with speed in the open field.

The Chiefs likely won't task Gordon with too much offensive responsibility. He told Mike Klis of 9 News the team made "no promises" he would be a part of the active roster.

Yet with Clyde Edwards-Helaire on injured reserve because of a high ankle sprain, Gordon could work his way into the running back rotation with rookie Isiah Pacheco and Jerick McKinnon. He should be able to take advantage of the additional space that quarterback Patrick Mahomes creates because opposing defenses are so worried about stopping the pass.