Todd Haley kicked off the Chiefs offseason activities Monday and while we don’t have a full roll-call, we know that guard Brian Waters has been absent from the voluntary workouts just as he was last season. A point that Waters was quick to point out to Adam Teicher.
“I haven’t participated in the offseason program fully in five or six years,” Waters said. “That’s nothing new. I would never miss out on (offseason practice) because of displeasure with the team. I’ll be participating for sure in everything mandatory. Everything else will be my prerogative to choose if I’m going to be there.
“Those are not the tactics I would ever use if I had any displeasure with the organization. I’m the type of (person) that if I have a problem, I’ll go speak to the people I have a problem with.”
Waters was in Kansas City for the ceremonial opening of the Smashburger restaurant in Overland Park. Smashburger for the next week will donate a portion of its proceeds to Waters’ charitable organization, the 54 Foundation.
Participation in the offseason program is, by NFL rule, voluntary. The only mandatory offseason obligation required by a player’s contract is a three-day minicamp, which the Chiefs will have later in the spring.
“Right now, my priorities are my family first, which it always is,” Waters said. “This particular part of the season is also about business and about trying to prepare for things after football. This is a part of that. My foundation is going to follow me basically even when my football career is over. This is a part of getting prepared for that part of my life.
“There are times of the season to handle certain things. This is the time to handle the business things and some other off-the-field type things. When football comes around, I’ll be ready to go handle that business as well.”
Asked Wednesday whether he still wanted to play for the Chiefs, Waters said, “Yeah, definitely. Honestly, the truth is: Whether I want to play for the Chiefs or not, I want to play football and I have a contract with the Chiefs. So it really doesn’t matter what I want.”
You can’t argue with Waters when he says he’ll be ready to take care of business on the field because after the fiasco that was last offseason, he had a solid season in the middle of a shuffling offensive line. That doesn’t mean that I think he should be skipping any offseason programs, but at least he did the exact same thing last season and eventually got with the program. Hopefully he’ll show up for the mandatory mini-camps in shape this year.
Waters staying away from anything that isn’t tagged with the term “mandatory” can’t be a surprise to Todd Haley but it has to stick in his side knowing that his guard is near by but unwilling to work out with his teammates.