The Kansas City Chiefs will wrap up the regular season Sunday afternoon in San Diego against the Chargers and they’ve announced their list of seven inactive players. It’s a who’s who of Chiefs playmakers, finally revealing how little head coach Andy Reid plans to play his impact players in this meaningless game.
OT Branden Albert, WR Dwayne Bowe, RB Jamaal Charles, LB Tamba Hail, LB Derrick Johnson, DT Dontari Poe, QB Alex Smith
We already knew Bowe and Hali were ruled out, but the rest of the inactives are made up of the most important players to the Chiefs playoff success. Charles, Smith and Albert are the anchor of the Kansas City offense, while Johnson and Poe hold things down on the other side of the ball.
After sitting out for three weeks, Albert had been preparing to play this week to get the rust out for the playoffs. But considering he’s a veteran that should be able to work things out very quickly next week, it makes sense to keep the franchise player on the sidelines for one more game.
Obviously only seven players can be inactive, but even those big names that are technically active — LB Justin Houston, CB Brandon Flowers — shouldn’t expect to see any action.
Instead it’ll be the backups that will get a chance to show what they can do in a game the Chargers need to win in order to keep their playoff hopes alive. Leading the way will be Chase Daniel, who has attempted just 17 passes in his five-year career. Undrafted rookie Tyler Bray could see some time behind Daniel.
Also getting a long look will be RB Knile Davis, who has been Charles’ backup, but thanks to a bout of fumbleitis has the Chiefs coaching staff wondering if he can be trusted in important spots.
We should get our first extended look at offensive linemen Rishaw Johnson and Eric Kush, who are poised to make their first career NFL starts.