AFC West: Devon Wylie

Chiefs roster predictions, part I

August, 28, 2013
8/28/13
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Not much intrigue left to the preseason for the Kansas City Chiefs. Just trying to stay healthy through Thursday night’s final exhibition game against the Green Bay Packers at Arrowhead Stadium.

That, and the final round of roster cuts that loom afterward. The Chiefs, like all NFL teams, must trim their active roster from 75 to 53 players by Saturday evening.

Here’s my prediction on how their roster will look for the Sept. 8 regular-season opener against the Jaguars in Jacksonville, Fla., at offensive positions and in the kicking game. I’ll post defensive predictions later today.

Quarterback (3): Alex Smith, Chase Daniel, Tyler Bray. This might be the only position where there is no intrigue. They are set and in this order on the depth chart.

Running back (4): Jamaal Charles, Anthony Sherman, Knile Davis, Shaun Draughn. The only real mystery here is whether the Chiefs keep Draughn or Cyrus Gray as the third halfback. Draughn has been more productive than Gray. The Chiefs don’t use their fullback enough to keep more than just Sherman.

Wide receiver (6): Dwayne Bowe, Donnie Avery, Dexter McCluster, Junior Hemingway, Devon Wylie, A.J. Jenkins. This position has come into focus since the Chiefs traded Jon Baldwin and released Terrance Copper. Bowe and Avery are the starters, McCluster the slot receiver. Hemingway has been steady during camp and the preseason and deserves a spot. Wiley and Jenkins are fast, and coach Andy Reid likes speed. The Chiefs might also keep undrafted rookie Rico Richardson, who caught the touchdown pass in overtime in Pittsburgh last week, but I’m not going to predict that.

Tight end (4): Anthony Fasano, Tony Moeaki, Travis Kelce, Demetrius Harris. The shoulder injury to Moeaki might lead the Chiefs to place him on the injured-reserve list. Either way, the Chiefs will need to keep another tight end now, and that’s likely to be Harris. A former basketball player who didn’t play football in college, Harris needs more time to develop, so the Chiefs might be in search of veteran help at this position.

Offensive line (8): Branden Albert, Eric Fisher, Donald Stephenson, Jeff Allen, Jon Asamoah, Geoff Schwartz, Rodney Hudson, Eric Kush. Stephenson is too good to be a backup for long. He and Schwartz will be the first reserves off the bench. Kush is a developmental player.

Specialists (3): Ryan Succop, Dustin Colquitt, Thomas Gafford. They’re the only players still on the roster at their respective positions.

Chiefs have work to do on offense

August, 17, 2013
8/17/13
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Random thoughts from the Kansas City Chiefs’ 15-13 home loss against San Francisco on Friday night:

The Chiefs experienced adversity for the first time this summer. The first-team offense wasn’t very good. Facing his former team, new Kansas City quarterback Alex Smith played the first half (including some against San Francisco’s second unit) and struggled. He completed 7 of 16 passes for 62 yards.

Smith was good last week in New Orleans and he has had a strong training camp. To pin his woes against San Francisco all on him would be misleading. He was under constant pressure. He was sacked three times. Kansas City’s offensive line is beat up a bit, but more is expected from it and it will be focal point of practice next week. Smith was also the victim of some drops. Plus, the team was playing without star running back Jamaal Charles, who has a mild foot strain. He will be back for the regular season.

Still, the Chiefs have to dig deep and work on the offense as the preseason rolls on. Otherwise, it was a good night for the Chiefs. The special teams were unbelievably good and the defense was solid.

New special-teams coach Dave Toub came over from Chicago with a sterling reputation. He is building upon it.

The return game was great last week and terrific against the 49ers. Quintin Demps had a 104-yard kickoff return for a score and Devon Wylie had a 52-yard return. The Chiefs also had a blocked extra point. That type of dominance on special teams could win a lot of games.

Defensively, the Chiefs had four sacks. Young starters Justin Houston and Dontari Poe looked good in limited roles.

Receiver Jon Baldwin, the team’s 2011 first-round pick, continued to struggle. He had a drop and looked lost. You have to wonder if the light is ever going to come on for him.

Rookie running back Knile Davis, who started for Charles, had his moments as he had 37 yards on 10 carries. He looks like he is ready to contribute.

It seems like Tyler Bray is moving away from Ricky Stanzi for the No. 3 quarterback job. Stanzi did not play. Backup quarterback Chase Daniel was terrific as he completed all six of his pass attempts.
Three things to watch for as the Kansas City Chiefs whost the San Francisco 49ers on Friday. Kickoff at 8 pm. ET:

Smith sees his former teammates: New Kansas City starter Alex Smith faces his former team. The No. 1 overall draft pick by the 49ers in 2005, Smith slowly became a steady player for the 49ers. Young star Colin Kaepernick replaced Smith at beginning of last season. It’s the preseason, but I’d expect to see a fired-up Smith.

More return explosion? Dexter McCluster, Knile Davis and Devon Wylie all had long returns last week. Nothing can spark an offense like a great return. Let’s see if the Chiefs can make a habit of it.

First-team defense: The Chiefs’ first-team defense was outstanding at New Orleans. This group is working well under new coordinator Bob Sutton. Let see what this unit can do against another strong offense.

Alex Smith shines for Chiefs

August, 10, 2013
8/10/13
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Random thoughts about the Chiefs’ 17-13 loss Friday night at New Orleans:

The game was a success in Andy Reid’s first work with his new team. The Chiefs led a good team on the road, 10-0, after the first quarter. That’s impressive.

The Chiefs will be fine if they get good quarterback play. In his first game as a Chief, Alex Smith was terrific. He completed 7-of-8 passes for 68 yards on a 14-play, 80-yard opening drive that netted a touchdown. The Chiefs had big trouble scoring on their opening drive of games last season. It’s a big reason why there was change at coach and at quarterback.

Smith looked completely comfortable working in Reid’s offense. It’s just one game, but it’s a good sign.

Reid loves to get his running backs active in the passing game. That was evident as star Jamaal Charles caught three passes for 27 yards. That will be a big part of the Chiefs’ offense.

Right tackle Eric Fisher, the No. 1 overall draft pick, had a scare with a hand injury. But it is not considered serious.

The Chiefs had success in the return game. Rookie Knile Davis had a kickoff return for 79 yards. Dexter McCluster had a 55-yard punt return and Devon Wylie added a 31-yard kickoff return and a 22-yard punt return. That’s a dynamic group.

The race for the No. 3 quarterback job between undrafted rookie Tyler Bray and third-year veteran Ricky Stanzi didn’t change much. Both players were just so-so. The competition will likely continue for the rest of the preseason with Bray being the favorite.
NFC Eight in the Box: East | West | North | South AFC: East | West | North | South

What are the three key camp issues facing each AFC West team?

DENVER BRONCOS

Offense: The Wes Welker Factor
Peyton Manning has a new toy. But with the wealth of options in this offense, it seems unlikely Welker will match his production from his days with Tom Brady. Manning will love exploiting the mismatches Welker creates from the slot. Welker’s experience in New England's up-tempo offense should pay off as Denver transitions to a similar pace. It is difficult to find weaknesses in the Broncos’ offense right now.

Defense: Pass-rush issue
Elvis Dumervil is now playing for Baltimore. Von Miller is one of the league’s premier defensive players and pass-rushers, but more is needed. Where will it come from? Derek Wolfe showed some flashes as an inside pass-rusher during his rookie season and on passing downs. Robert Ayers should also be effective when moved inside. Will the edge player opposite Miller -- Ayers on early downs and Shaun Phillips, most likely, on passing downs -- be able to produce? The wild card here is rookie Quanterus Smith.

Wild card: Pass coverage in the middle
Denver had a lot of problems last season covering opposing tight ends in the middle of the field. On paper, it doesn’t look as though the problem has been addressed. Denver’s safety play is average at best, but the middle linebacker spot manned by Joe Mays is the real issue. Look for opposing offenses to keep Denver in base defensive personnel and attack the middle of the field.

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

Offense: The Alex Smith Factor
Smith needs plenty of resources to be successful. But if he just makes fewer mistakes at the position than Matt Cassel did a year ago -- something that seems highly likely -- then Kansas City will be much more competitive. Smith also has underrated running skills, and the Chiefs should orchestrate plenty of designed quarterback movement and runs.

Defense: Interior pass rush
The Chiefs were among the worst defenses in the NFL last season at creating pressure on the quarterback between the tackles. Although the team made drastic changes across the roster, this area was not addressed. Unless Dontari Poe steps up in his second season -- and pass rush isn’t really his game -- little should change for Kansas City.

Wild card: Secondary receivers
The Chiefs are very light at wide receiver outside of Dwayne Bowe. They have three strong tight ends and could employ plenty of multiple-tight end sets. Jamaal Charles should see plenty of passes thrown his way, but another outside threat needs to step up. Donnie Avery has the speed to open up room for others, but his hands are highly inconsistent. Jon Baldwin and Dexter McCluster have yet to find their place in this league. Keep an eye on Devon Wylie.

OAKLAND RAIDERS

Offense: Man-blocking scheme
For some unknown reason, the Raiders switched in 2012 from a predominantly man-blocking scheme, in which Darren McFadden thrived, to a zone-blocking scheme. That was a failed experiment, especially for McFadden, who is entering the final year of his contract. Switching back could allow him to be the foundation of Oakland’s offense.

Defense: No pass rush
I fear the Raiders will be among the worst defenses in the NFL next season at rushing the passer. Lamarr Houston is a very talented player, capable of greatness, but he isn’t a typical edge pass-rushing defensive end. Andre Carter has had success in this area, but his best days are behind him. I like the additions of Pat Sims and Vance Walker at defensive tackle, but both are run-stuffers. Opposing quarterbacks are going to have a lot of unobstructed time in the pocket this season. Calling Jadeveon Clowney ...

Wild card: Building blocks
The Raiders are not going to win the Super Bowl. Instead, they must determine which players are their building blocks. I was impressed by the way the front office, despite many limitations, addressed the team's needs during the offseason. But many of their signings were only one-year deals. Which players do they want to bring back? Many players on Oakland’s roster are auditioning this season.

SAN DIEGO CHARGERS

Offense: Pass protection
Philip Rivers needs to be protected, which San Diego hasn’t been able to do lately. Although the Chargers used a first-round pick on D.J. Fluker, who is a much better run-blocker than pass-blocker, I don’t see noticeable upgrades on the offensive line. I also don’t see much upside or potential star power in the group. Changing the scheme could help by getting the ball out of Rivers’ hands quicker, but he could be headed for another punishing season.

Defense: Time to step up
The Chargers have several promising young defensive players who could be ready to break out. Eric Weddle is among the league’s best safeties, and Corey Liuget has already established himself as a real force on San Diego’s defensive line. Kendall Reyes might not be far behind Liuget and should become more of a household name this season. Manti Te’o could have an instant impact in his rookie season and pair with Donald Butler to be one of the better inside linebacker tandems in the league.

Wild card: Receiver situation
Antonio Gates isn’t what he once was, but he still makes plays and Rivers trusts him. The Chargers have many other receiving options now: Danario Alexander, Malcom Floyd, Keenan Allen, Vincent Brown, Robert Meachem, Eddie Royal, John Phillips, Ladarius Green, Danny Woodhead and Ronnie Brown. How will that sort out? My favorites are Allen, Vincent Brown and Green. Getting these young weapons plenty of reps could pay off in the long term for San Diego.
NFC Eight in the Box: East | West | North | South AFC: East | West | North | South

How does each team look at wide receiver and what still needs to be done?

Denver

The Broncos made the biggest free-agency splash in the AFC West by signing New England slot machine Wes Welker.

He has led the NFL in receptions over the past six seasons and is joining a quarterback, Peyton Manning, who has long had a connection with his slot receivers. The Welker addition gives Denver arguably the best group of receivers in the NFL.

Welker joins young receivers Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker. Both players flourished while playing with Manning last season. With these skilled players, someone is going to be open. Finding a way to defend this trio will be a major task for every defensive coordinator that faces Denver.

Kansas City

This position is going to be in the spotlight because new head coach Andy Reid loves the passing game.

It all starts with top receiver Dwayne Bowe. There is a reason the new Kansas City brass gave Bowe a huge contract to keep him from leaving in free agency. Reid is going to build his passing game around Bowe. Bowe has big ability and can be a top receiver. Yes, he still drops passes and he has to show he will still be hungry after getting the big contract. But he can play.

The Chiefs made an underrated addition in Donnie Avery. He had 60 catches for the Colts last season. He can stretch the field. Reid will find ways for Avery to help. Reid is also a fan of tiny Dexter McCluster, who can line up in several different spots. Perhaps he can fill a DeSean Jackson-like role for Reid.

The team also has a slot option in Devon Wylie. A big question mark, of course, is 2011 first-round pick Jon Baldwin. He has made little impact. He looks good in camp but disappears on the field. Reid gave him a lukewarm endorsement recently. Baldwin has talent, but it’s time he shows it. I think we could see the Chiefs draft another bigger receiver in the middle rounds, but I think the team will try to rely on Bowe, Avery and McCluster this season and hope others develop.

Oakland

The Raiders have a familiar theme at this position. They are young and promising, but they are also unproven. That has been the story with this unit for a few years. They Raiders have loaded up on young receivers, but none have shown they can be a proven starter.

The team released 2009 No. 7 overall pick Darrius Heyward-Bey this year. He joins fellow young, promising receivers Chaz Schilens and Louis Murphy as those who have been jettisoned in the recent past after not fulfilling hopes. But the cupboard is not bare. Again, we need to see these players take the next step.

The two players who probably will get the first chance are Denarius Moore and Rod Streater. Moore, a fifth-round pick in 2011, had a decent season last year -- 51 catches for 741 yards and seven touchdowns. But he was inconsistent and didn’t make the expected strides after his rookie season. Still, he has ability, and the Raiders need him to show he can be a No. 1 receiver. Streater had 39 catches as an undrafted rookie. He looks very promising and is a hard worker. If Streater and Moore can grow together, the Raiders might be onto something for the future.

Small receiver Jacoby Ford has big-play capability, but he is injury prone. Still, he will get a chance to show he can help. Juron Criner, a fifth-round pick last year, was a camp star and made a few plays in the season. He has a chance to develop as well. The Raiders have a lot of needs, but I can see them adding another receiver to the mix. Again, this group is full of potential. Now it’s time Oakland gets major production from that potential.

San Diego

The Chargers can use some receiving help. They have other needs, but I can see them taking a receiver as early as the second round. If the season started now, Malcom Floyd would be the team’s No. 1 receiver and he is more of a No. 2 receiver.

But there is hope. Danario Alexander made an impact last season. He was a former prospect who fell through the cracks because of injuries. He is a restricted free agent, and it wouldn't be out of the question for another team to sign him to an offer sheet. The Chargers would like to keep him. He has great size, big ability and he forged a nice chemistry with quarterback Philip Rivers.

The team is also excited about Vince Brown. He missed all of last season after suffering a broken ankle in the preseason. He came on strong as a rookie and will have a role. There also are Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal. Both signed last year and both gave minimal production.

They will be given a chance, but the Chargers want to see Alexander and Brown continue to develop. It would not hurt the team to go find a young receiver it could try to develop quickly.

Chiefs add Donnie Avery to mix

March, 13, 2013
3/13/13
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Alex Smith has another weapon to work with in Kansas City.

The busy Kansas City Chiefs have agreed to terms with receiver Donnie Avery, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Avery is a nice player who can stretch the field. He had 60 catches for the Colts last season.

He should be a solid No. 2 option behind Dwayne Bowe. I expect 2011 first-round pick Jon Baldwin will be the No. 3 receiver and the team also has the likes of Dexter McCluster and Devon Wylie. All three of those players have potential.

Avery does have issues with drops, but he can also make big plays. He is a solid addition in Kansas City, which appears serious about improving from a disastrous 2-14 season in 2012. The Chiefs have been one of the busiest team in the NFL in recent weeks.

In other news, NFL Network is reporting potential trade partners with Kansas City for quarterback Matt Cassel are Minnesota, Arizona and Tampa Bay. All the Chiefs would get is a late-round pick. If a trade is not made, he will be cut.

Meanwhile, the Chiefs released a statement from Smith about coming to Kansas City.

“I’m happy to be joining the Chiefs family,” Smith said. “I’d like to thank the Hunt family, John Dorsey and Coach [Andy] Reid for giving me the opportunity to play football for such a proud franchise. I know from experience that Chiefs fans are among the greatest in the NFL, and I’m really looking forward to Sundays at Arrowhead Stadium.”
Devin Hester wants a fresh start and may pursue a trade out of Chicago.

Could that mean he could reunite with the only special-teams coach he’s ever had in the NFL, Dave Toub? He was recently hired as the Chiefs’ special teams coach.

Hester is considered the greatest return man in the history of the game. So, I’m sure Toub would be interested in reuniting with Hester.

But I don’t know how easy it would be.

The Chiefs already have Dexter McCluster and Devon Wylie. They are similar to Hester because they are small receivers/returners. Teams can only have so many of those types of players. So, unless the Chiefs were totally enamored with the idea adding Hester, 30, I’m not sure if it would be a good fit.

Meanwhile, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports the 49ers will try to trade Alex Smith as opposed to releasing him. Schefter reports the Chiefs will be one of the teams interested.

I totally agree. The Chiefs have long been connected to Smith. There are no sure things in the draft, and getting a veteran such as Smith may be the Chiefs’ best option for the immediate future.
Last week, Kansas City Chiefs punter Dustin Colquitt said he wants to remain with the team. Colquitt, who is coming off a Pro Bowl berth, is about to enter free agency.

New Kansas City special teams coach Dave Toub, considered one of the best special teams coaches in the NFL, talked to reporters on Monday during a conference call and made it clear he wants to re-sign Colquitt.

“There are a lot of guys I like. I think there are some young players coming up that look pretty good. I particularly like our punter, I like him a lot,” said Toub, who came from Chicago. “I’ve never really had a punter that bombed a ball like this, we’ve had directional punters with Brad Maynard and Adam Podlesh before, and we were a directional cover team where we were going to try to kick the ball outside the numbers. Whereas Dustin, he more kind of bombs the ball. He’s working on being directional, but he’s going to bomb the ball and give you good hang time and distance at the same time. We’ll have to adjust a little bit more to him because he is quite the athlete.”

Of course, Toub doesn’t make the decision. But I’m sure new Kansas City coach Andy Reid and new Kansas City general manager John Dorsey will agree with Toub and make re-signing Colquitt a priority.

Toub, who was blessed for the past seven years by the presence of the great Devin Hester, also talked up Dexter McCluster as a punt returner. Toub said he will compete with Javier Arenas and Devon Wylie for the job.

“McCluster is somebody that’s very intriguing to me,” Toub said. “He can really make you miss and I just think he’s got a lot of untapped potential as a punt returner. So we’ll let all three of those guys battle it out and may the best man win.”

With Toub’s history and his excitement over the group he is taking over, I expect to see solid results quickly.

Branden Albert out for Chiefs

November, 25, 2012
11/25/12
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The Kansas City Chiefs will be without left tackle Branden Albert on Sunday against the Denver Broncos, and their dynamic pass-rush.

Albert has a back injury that forced him to leave last week’s game. He was doubtful to play Sunday. Rookie Donald Stephenson will start for Albert and he will have to deal with Denver star pass-rusher Von Miller, who has 13 sacks. The Chiefs did get some good news. Center Ryan Lilja (knee) will play Sunday, after missing last week’s game.

In a less-impactful decision, but an interesting one, receiver Jamar Newsome is active, a day after being promoted from the practice squad. He is active over veteran Steve Breaston, a former key cog in this offense, and fourth-round pick Devon Wylie. The Chiefs cut offensive lineman Rich Ranglin to make room for Newsome.

For Denver, cornerback Tracy Porter is inactive for the sixth straight game. He was probable after practicing this past week, but will not be on the field Sunday.

In other AFC West news:

Oakland backup running back Taiwan Jones, who was questionable with an ankle injury, is active in Cincinnati. Oakland needs Jones because of major injuries at the position.

As expected, the Raiders promoted linebacker Kaelin Burnett from practice squad. He fills spot left open by the release of linebacker Aaron Curry.

Also as expected, San Diego promoted tackle Kevin Haslam from the practice squad. He took the place of left tackle Jared Gaither, who went on the injured reserve Friday.

Steve Breaston is not active

November, 12, 2012
11/12/12
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Todd Haley will not be able to see one of his favorite players Monday night in Pittsburgh.

Kansas City receiver Steve Breaston is a healthy scratch for Monday night’s game. He was brought to Kansas City last season by Haley when he was the head coach. Breaston played for Haley when he was an assistant in Arizona. Haley was fired by the Chiefs last December and he is now the Steelers’ offensive coordinator. Rookie Devon Wylie is active in Breaston’s place.

Breaston has six catches in new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll’s system. He had 61 catches last season and he’s had, at least, 47 catches a season since catching eight balls as a rookie in Arizona in 2007.

Meanwhile, Kansas City offensive linemen Branden Albert (back) and center Ryan Lilja (neck) are playing Monday night. They were both questionable.

It is raining in Pittsburgh on Monday.

In other AFC West news:

Oakland running back Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson – who both suffered high ankle sprains against Tampa Bay in Week 9 and didn’t play Sunday at Baltimore – are still in walking boots. They will likely not play Sunday against New Orleans barring major improvement.

The NFL released a statement the punt return by Denver’s Trindon Holliday should have been reviewed and should have been ruled a touchback because he flipped the ball out of his hands before he crossed the goal line in Denver’s 36-14 win at Carolina.

Oakland is putting reserve linebacker Travis Goethel on injured reserve because of a season-ending knee injury he suffered Sunday at Baltimore. Bringing back linebacker Vic So'oto is not an option. He signed with Green Bay on Monday. The Raiders cut him Saturday to make room for Aaron Curry of the PUP.

The Chargers expect starting nose tackle Aubrayo Franklin to miss a couple of weeks with a knee injury.

Detroit claimed cornerback Pat Lee, who was cut by the Raiders on Saturday.
If Tracy Porter can’t play Sunday against his former team, the New Orleans Saints, the Broncos still might get some inside information on the Saints.

“He gives us little tips about what the receivers like to do,” said cornerback Chris Harris on Friday of Porter. “There’s really not too much he can really say, but he just gives me what this specific person likes to do.”

Harris is in line to start for Porter. Porter is officially listed on the injury report as questionable. However, he will not play until he is medically cleared, and that might be difficult before Sunday. Porter missed Week 6. He had a seizure in the summer and he had dealt with the affects of it.

Porter told reporters Friday he is confident in his recovery. He saw a doctor on Thursday.

“Everything looked normal, but they still want to make sure that I’m 100 percent healthy if they put me out there on the field, so that’s the only thing I can ask for,” Porter said.

In other AFC West injury news:

The Chargers are expected to have tackle Jared Gaither back after he suffered a groin injury in Week 6. He is listed as probable on the injury report to play Sunday at Cleveland. Receiver Eddie Royal (hamstring) and linebacker Jonas Mouton (hip) are questionable to play. Neither player practiced Friday.

Kansas City defensive end Glenn Dorsey (calf) is listed as questionable to face Oakland on Sunday. Receiver Devon Wylie (hamstring) is listed as probable.

Oakland defensive tackle Desmond Bryant (elbow) was limited Friday and he is questionable. Defensive ends Matt Shaughnessy and Dave Tollefson are both questionable with shoulder injuries. Tight end Richard Gordon (hamstring) and running back Taiwan Jones (knee) are questionable. They’ve been limited as well. Oakland coach Dennis Allen told reporters that he is considering activating linebacker Aaron Curry (knees) off the PUP list for the game. He has been practicing the past two weeks.

New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham (ankle) is going to be a game-time decision at Denver on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Peyton Manning said he is still not fully recovered from his neck injury that kept him out all of last season. Regardless, Manning is an MVP candidate.
The Kansas City Chiefs signed Peyton Hillis with the hopes of having one of the best 1-2 running back punches in the NFL.

While starter Jamaal Charles has been fantastic with 591 yards, Hillis hasn’t been unleashed because of an ankle injury. Hillis has missed the past three games with an injury. He has 93 yards on 21 carries this season.

Yet, the Chiefs may be getting close to getting Hillis back. He practiced on a limited basis and the team is hopeful he could play Sunday against visiting Oakland. Kansas City coach Romeo Crennel is looking forward to seeing a Charles-Hillis tandem finally develop.

“You’ve got a big back that can catch the ball, which can break some tackles, who has good vision and all those kinds of things, and being able to complement Jamaal as well,” Crennel told reporters Wednesday. “I think that it makes the defenses have to think twice about how they’re going to defend some things.”

Meanwhile, the Chiefs’ health seems to be improving. Defensive lineman Glenn Dorsey (calf) was limited and he could be getting back to action and receiver/returner Devon Wylie (hamstring) practiced fully.

Meanwhile, Oakland tight end Richard Gordon (hamstring) and running back Taiwan Jones (knee) have returned to practice. They were both limited. Linebacker Aaron Curry is practicing for the second straight week. Still, he may not be activated from the physically unable to perform list this week to play at Kansas City.

San Diego left tackle Jared Gaither is practicing for the second straight day. He missed the Chargers’ last game with a groin injury. It would be a boost for the Chargers if he can play Sunday at Cleveland.

Denver cornerback Tracy Porter was limited Wednesday with an illness that kept him out of Week 6 at San Diego. Porter has a solid chance to play against his former team, New Orleans, Sunday if he doesn’t have a setback.
The Chiefs will miss tight end Kevin Boss, who was put on injured reserve because of a concussion he suffered in Week 2.

Boss was signed to pair in double tight end sets with Tony Moeaki. The pairing had big potential and it gave the Kansas City offense an added dimension. Losing Boss won't cripple the Kansas City offense because Moeaki is talented and there are enough receiving options, but it does diminish the unit some.

Anytime a player has to be shelved for a season because of a head injury, it is scary. Hopefully, he recovers well. Boss signed a three-year, $9 million deal with the Chiefs in March. The team officially signed linebacker Bryan Kehl to replace Boss on the 53-man roster.

In other Chiefs’ injury news:

Several Kansas City players did not practice Wednesday, including running back Peyton Hillis (ankle), receiver Devon Wylie (hamstring), defensive ends Glenn Dorsey (calf) and Ropati Pitoitua (elbow), linebacker Derrick Johnson (groin), cornerback Brandon Flowers (heel) and receiver Jon Baldwin (hamstring).

Chiefs DE Glenn Dorsey is out Sunday

September, 30, 2012
9/30/12
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KANSAS CITY – Just when the Kansas City Chiefs were getting healthy on defense, they are dealing with another key injury.

Defensive lineman Glenn Dorsey is inactive for Sunday’s game against San Diego. Dorsey injured his calf this week in practice. He was listed as questionable on the injury report. Ropati Pitoitua and Allen Bailey will likely rotate at Dorsey’s right defensive end spot.

As expected, receiver Dwayne Bowe (groin) is active and expected to start. Fellow receivers Steve Breaston and Dexter McCluster are also active. They were questionable along with Bowe. Rookie receiver Devon Wylie is not active.

Starting safety Kendrick Lewis is inactive for the fourth straight game, even though he has been practicing for the past couple of weeks. I’d expect him to play next week at Baltimore. He has been out since August with a shoulder injury.

As expected, running back Peyton Hillis (ankle) and tight end Kevin Boss (concussion) are out.

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