Friday, July 22 was the day Kansas City Chiefs quarterbacks and rookies reported to training camp at St. Joseph. It also marked the day head coach Andy Reid named the players that will start camp sidelined with injury.
Reid told the media that cornerback Rashad Fenton (shoulder), offensive tackle Lucas Niang (knee), and rookie wide receiver Justyn Ross (foot) will “likely” start training camp on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list.
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Ross underwent foot surgery, according to Reid, which would explain why he was recently seen wearing a walking boot. Reid explained that the surgery was to clean up the previous injury Ross had at Clemson because it wasn’t functioning the way he wanted it to.
There is no timeline for Ross’ recovery at this time, per Reid.
General manager Brett Veach revealed on May 3 that Fenton was undergoing rehab for a shoulder procedure and expected Fenton to be ready for training camp.
In January, Niang suffered a torn patellar tendon during Kansas City’s Week 17 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals. The injury forced Niang to be sidelined for the remainder of the season.
During training camp, players placed on PUP can be activated at any point, regardless of when they were placed on PUP. Time will tell how much time those players need to work back from their respective injuries.
Insider Predicts Fan-Favorite RB & Former 1st-Round DB Will be Cut
With training camp right around the corner, 53-man roster projections for the 2022 NFL season are beginning to roll in.
Pete Sweeney of Arrowhead Pride released his first Chiefs roster projection of the 2022 season on July 19, and the first notable omission from his projection is running back Derrick Gore.
Kansas City signed Gore last offseason, and he managed to make the team’s 53-man roster in 2021 after a strong preseason. Once Clyde Edwards-Helaire landed on injured reserve during the 2021 regular season, Gore made his presence known in the Chiefs’ backfield. In 11 regular season games, he accumulated 256 rushing yards on 51 rushing attempts (5.0 yards per carry) and had 2 rushing touchdowns, per Pro Football Reference. He also caught 8 passes on 9 targets for 105 receiving yards.
Gore was omitted from Sweeney’s 53-man roster projection along with rookie Jerrion Ealy. The running backs that did make Sweeney’s roster were Edwards-Helaire, Ronald Jones II, Jerrick McKinnon, and rookie Isiah Pacheco.
“The wild cards in this room are Derrick Gore and Jerrion Ealy, both of whom Kansas City will want to keep on the practice squad,” Sweeney wrote. “But if they make things interesting at camp, perhaps the Chiefs pull a late-preseason “Carlos Hyde” by moving McKinnon or Jones to another club.”
Baker Misses Cut in CB Room, KC Gives Up on Powell
Among the other notable decisions by Sweeney was making Deandre Baker an odd-man-out in the cornerback room. Baker, a former first-round pick of the New York Giants, showed progress during his first full season in Kansas City in 2021. However, he didn’t do enough to make the roster this season, according to Sweeney.
“The key name you might find missing here is Deandre Baker — and my thought here is simple: if the Chiefs felt like Baker could be a producer for them, do they draft five defensive backs and trade for another?” Sweeney wrote. “Maybe the Chiefs flip Baker for a day-three conditional pick with a team like Miami — which now has cornerback coach Sam Madison, who was always incredibly high on Baker while he was in Kansas City. Also, look out for Chris Lammons — a surprise name to make it last year.”
Sweeney also predicts that 2021 fifth-round pick and wide receiver Cornell Powell, who spent the 2021 season on Kansas City’s practice squad, will be cut.