Notes, Quotes

The Sports Xchange

October 18, 2018 at 12:09 am.

–The Chiefs finally received some good news on the injury front heading into Sunday’s home encounter with Cincinnati, but it appears unlikely linebacker Justin Houston, center Mitch Morse or safety Eric Berry will return to the lineup this week.

Houston suffered a hamstring strain in Week 5 against Jacksonville, which kept him out of last week’s loss at New England. The injury is expected to sideline Houston for at least a couple of weeks. Morse suffered a concussion against New England and remains in the league’s concussion protocol.

Berry, who hasn’t practiced since Aug. 11, continues making progress, according to head coach Andy Reid, but he did not practice on Wednesday.

Safety Eric Murray (ankle) and linebacker Tanoh Kpassagnon (ankle) practiced in full Wednesday after sitting out against the Patriots.

Another safety, Daniel Sorensen, remains on injured reserve but is now eligible to return to practice. He suffered a tibial plateau fracture that was expected to keep him out until at least midseason.

“He is making great progress,” Reid said. “Probably won’t see him this week, but he is close. We will see how he does here in the next week or two.”

–Injuries along the offensive line prompted the Chiefs to reach out to an old friend this week, signing veteran free agent Jeff Allen. He spent his first four seasons with the Chiefs after the club selected him in the second round of the 2012 draft.

“Kind of get him back in the swing, first of all,” Reid said. “Let him get in and get the verbiage down and then get out and practice a little bit here and see how he does.”

The Chiefs offensive line certainly needs the help. Starting right guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif went on injured reserve last week after suffering a fractured tibia and ligament damage in his ankle, and could miss most if not all of the season. Then starting center Mitch Morse entered the league’s concussion protocol following a hit to the helmet Sunday night against New England.

Jordan Devey started at right guard against New England. He moved to center following Morse’s injury with second-year lineman Andrew Wylie stepping in at right guard. Starting left guard Cam Erving also appeared on Wednesday’s injury report with a quad injury, although he did practice in full.

That leaves just interior lineman Austin Reiter and guard Kahlil McKenzie on the bench. McKenzie, a sixth-round draft pick this season, is making the move from the defensive side of the ball and may need more seasoning before stepping into a game.

Allen left the Chiefs in 2016, signing a four-year, $28 million free-agent contract with the Houston Texans. He battled injuries much of his career, with an ankle and concussion injury limiting him to 12 games last season. The Texans reached an injury settlement with him during the offseason. But Allen brings experience and knowledge of the Chiefs’ offense at a time when the Chiefs need both.

“Right now, he’s in a backup position,” Reid said. “We will just see how it goes. Glad to have him back though.”

–Patrick Mahomes enters Sunday night’s game against Cincinnati after experiencing the motivation of coming off a loss for the first time in his NFL career.

“There’s definitely a fire.” Mahomes said about dealing with last week’s 43-40 defeat at New England. “You hate losing as a competitor. At the same time, you learn, especially for me, that you can’t miss throws against great teams. That’s pretty much the biggest thing I’m going to take from that game. No matter how early it is in the game those things come back to haunt you at the end.”

Mahomes said he and his teammates responded well following the loss that dropped their record to 5-1 on the season.

“Everybody is still in great spirits,” Mahomes said. “We know there is a lot of season left and we know that there is going to be ups and downs. We talked about it this whole entire season, you just have to make sure you bounce back and respond to any adverse situation.”

The Chiefs have another prime-time game coming up this week with the game against the Bengals flexed to Sunday night. Mahomes puts pressure on himself to learn from his mistakes last week and take advantage of another opportunity in prime time, this time at home.

“Every experience I feel like is a learning experience and being able to play in two prime-time games already and then having another one at Arrowhead is really exciting,” Mahomes said.

BY THE NUMBERS: 199 – Number of career wins by Chiefs head coach Andy Reid including both regular-season and playoff games. Reid can become the ninth NFL coach with 200 wins with a victory on Sunday, joining former Chiefs head coach Marty Schottenheimer (205) on the list. Reid ranks second among active NFL coaches in career wins behind New England’s Bill Belichick (282).