When news broke a few days ago that Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles had injured himself in practice, I was devastated.
Devastated for the Chiefs and their fans, of course, but really because he’s the key to my fantasy team this year.
So, the good news is that I can breathe a sigh of relief now that we know the injury isn’t serious and won’t keep Charles from being the leader of the Kansas City offense this fall.
Oh yeah, and Chiefs fans can rest easy too.
But not only can they rest easy, they should be very excited about what Charles and the Chiefs are preparing to unleash on the NFL this season.
A 2-14 team just one year ago, Kansas City upgraded three of most important pieces of their team this offseason. Alex Smith is an underrated addition at quarterback, Andy Reid brings a winning resume with him as the head coach and No. 1 overall pick Eric Fisher is the left tackle of the future. Those three newcomers bring an air filled with excitement to the Kansas City training camp this summer, but Charles still playing back there at running back is the key to their success this season.
Well, technically it’s the combination of Charles and Reid together that is the key to success for the Chiefs.
Reid is a master at using his running backs, especially backs that make their living cutting and darting through the seams in the defense that Reid’s west coast offense opens for them. Charles is very similar to another diminutive back that had success under Reid, LeSean McCoy, and don’t forget about Brian Westbrook, either.
McCoy came onto the NFL scene and had success right away under Reid, running for 3,866 yards and 30 touchdowns in his first four years in the league. Charles has been nearly as productive in that same time period despite playing under several different offensive systems that never focused on his skill set.
That won’t be a problem with Reid at the helm. Look for him to feature Charles in the offense this season, and for the Chiefs to have a bounce-back year in 2013.