Arrowhead Report: The Final Days of 2011

Posted Dec 29, 2011

Kansas City's pending free agents relish final days of season as the potential for change looms

Uncertain of what the future may hold, many of the Chiefs pending free agents are absorbing what could be the final days with their current teammates.

For some players, like veteran running back Thomas Jones and nose tackle Kelly Gregg, the unknowns associated with an expiring contract are nothing new.

Jones has played for five teams and Gregg has been part of four. There are 331 games of experience shared between the two players over 24 combined seasons. Regardless, the potential of moving on is still bittersweet.

“I have one game left in this season with this team and I’m focusing on that,” Jones said. “Nobody is sure about next year at this point. We’re just trying to get through this week and enjoy each other’s company. This is the last game that this group will play together as the 2011 Kansas City Chiefs.”

For younger players, like cornerback Brandon Carr, the possibility of moving on is a first-time occurrence. Carr has started every game for the Chiefs since arriving as a fifth-round draft pick in 2008 and is rounding out the final week of the one-year restricted free agent tender he signed in August.

“I’m just trying to seize the moment with my teammates and the guys that I’ve been here for four years with,” Carr said. “So many friendships were established and created here. I just want to make the most of it and go out there and have fun this Sunday.”

One of Carr’s closest friends on the team is fellow cornerback Brandon Flowers. The two were part of the same draft class and have started opposite one another for nearly four full seasons. Flowers agreed to a contract extension with the team in September.

Carr says he won’t let the details of an undetermined contract situation distract him from preparing for what could potentially be his final game as a Chief. He’s simply living in the moment.

“All of that is going to sort itself out in time,” Carr said. “That’s not my main focus right now. Once that time comes we can handle that situation, but right now it’s all about the Kansas City Chiefs and these guys in the locker room with me.

“I’m playing with guys I love. I’m just enjoying the time that I know I have with my teammates right now.”

Bronco Blues

Denver’s playoff scenario is simple. If they win, they’re in.

However, for the Broncos, the desired result hasn’t come easy in recent years. This is the fourth time in the last six seasons that Denver has needed a win in Week 17 to have a chance to reach the postseason.

The Broncos are currently 0-3 in that scenario since 2006.

1) 2006 vs. SF – lost 26-23 in OT (KC gained wild card)

Denver blew a 13-0 first-half lead

2) 2008 at SD – lost 52-21 (SD won AFC West)

DEN trailed 24-6 at halftime and allowed 491 total yards

3) 2009 vs. KC – lost 44-24 (NYJ and BAL gained wild cards)

DEN allowed 524 total yards and two INT returns for TDs

Injury Report

The Chiefs have yet to place any injured player on injured reserve this week, but roster changes could be coming prior to the season finale on Sunday.

Running back Jackie Battle and safety Jon McGraw were both held out of practice Thursday afternoon with injuries. Battle has been in a walking boot this week and is expected to miss Sunday’s game with a foot injury while McGraw has missed the past two games due to a high ankle sprain.

Wide receiver Jeremy Horne was also held out of Thursday’s practice with an illness.

Chiefs Injury Report

Did Not Practice: RB Jackie Battle (Foot), WR Jeremy Horne (Illness), S Jon McGraw (Ankle)

Broncos Injury Report

Did Not Practice: S Brian Dawkins (Neck)

Limited Practice: S David Bruton (Achilles), CB Chris Harris (Neck)

Full Practice: S Quinton Carter (Hip), LB Von Miller (Thumb)

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