ST. JOSEPH, Mo. -- A daily review of the hot topics coming out of Kansas City Chiefs training camp at Missouri Western State University:
The Chiefs began the process of gearing down in preparation for Sunday night’s preseason game against the Panthers in Charlotte. Their practice ended more than an hour earlier than usual and it was conducted mostly at something far less than full speed. The best action came on back-to-back plays during a competitive period. First, wide receiver Donnie Avery beat Marcus Cooper deep down the right sideline and made a nice over-the-shoulder catch of an Alex Smith pass. Smith and Avery came back at Cooper on the next play with a deep post pattern, but Cooper broke this one up.
Eric Berry again didn’t practice because of tendinitis in his heel and he won’t play against the Panthers. Berry also missed last week’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals. “We’re just going to let it calm down here,’’ coach Andy Reid said. “He’s been battling this thing so we’ll let it get settled down before we bring him back. I think he’ll be fine. I don’t think it will be a problem.’’ Others who won’t play at Carolina include defensive linemen Mike DeVito and Mike Catapano.
Reid revealed a finger injury to wide receiver Dwayne Bowe that could explain why Bowe has dropped so many passes. “His finger is shot,’’ Reid said. “It’s been thrown out of place about 15 times and he’s not catching the ball. But he’s getting his work done. You can practice with that type of thing.’’
The Chiefs are in the final season of their five-year contract to hold training camp in St. Joseph. The Chiefs hold an option to have camp at Missouri Western State again next year. An alternative is to hold camp at their practice facility in Kansas City. It’s clear Reid likes the Chiefs to go away for camp and practice daily in front of fans. If the wishes of the football operation hold sway with the decision, it would be an upset for the Chiefs to train at home next year. “We enjoy it here. We do. From our side, it’s a nice setup," Reid said.
The Chiefs are finished with the St. Joseph portion of camp. They will resume practice next week in Kansas City and those sessions will be closed to the public.