KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Notes from the latest Kansas City Chiefs practice:
Tight end Travis Kelce has yet to participate in an offseason practice but coach Andy Reid said he could get some work next week when the Chiefs conclude their spring with a three-day minicamp. The Chiefs are counting on Kelce to boost their passing game. He showed a nice ability last year as a downfield receiver but his rookie season was ruined in the preseason because of a knee ailment. He had surgery and has yet to be cleared to get on the field. Another player coming off knee surgery, wide receiver Kyle Williams, could also get his first work of the offseason next week. But left tackle Eric Fisher will have to wait until the start of training camp in July to return to full practice participation. Fisher, who had offseason shoulder surgery, has been limited to individual and position drills.
Running back Jamaal Charles, guard Jeff Allen and cornerback Phillip Gaines were absent from practice. Among the players who didn't participate for injury or illness issues were wide receivers Junior Hemingway (strep throat) and Weston Dressler (hamstring) and nickelback Chris Owens (hamstring). Cornerback Brandon Flowers and linebacker Justin Houston continued their holdouts.
Practice ended about a half hour earlier than normal but the Chiefs still received plenty of work. Rookie kicker Cairo Santos tried a pair of 61-yard field goals. One had the necessary distance but was wide right. The other hit the crossbar before bouncing back.
Safety Eric Berry started practice by stepping in front of running back Joe McKnight to intercept a pass from quarterback Alex Smith. Smith made amends on the next play by completing a long pass to tight end Demetrius Harris. Smith later in practice threw a touchdown pass to Harris.
McKnight is trying to make the Chiefs as their third running back behind Charles and Knile Davis. He didn't help his cause when he dropped a downfield pass after getting behind linebacker Josh Martin.
Next week's minicamp is the only mandatory event of the offseason for the players. They are subject to a fine if absent. Reid said he didn't know whether to expect Flowers or Houston. "Really it's all of their decisions whether they come or don't come even though it's a mandatory camp,'' he said. "We'll see.''
Cornerback Sean Smith remained with the second team after his arrest this week for DUI. Asked how long Smith's demotion would last, Reid said, "We'll see. The other guys are performing well so we'll see how it goes.''