After one game back, sore knees will prevent Tamba Hali from practicing

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- One game into his 2017 season, linebacker Tamba Hali's chronically ailing knees will keep him out of Wednesday’s practice for the Kansas City Chiefs.

That can’t be considered good news for the Chiefs or Hali, who was on the physically unable to perform list until the day before the Chiefs’ most recent game, a Week 9 loss to the Dallas Cowboys. The Chiefs had their bye last weekend.

Asked whether Hali’s absence from practice was a setback or part of the plan, coach Andy Reid said, “A little bit of each. His knee swelled up a little bit, yeah. But we kind of anticipated that. That’s what it’s done over the last few years. We’re just backing (off) on it and letting it calm down. We’ll go from there."

Hali didn’t often practice last season because of his sore knees but still found a way to play in all 16 games. But he hadn’t practiced or played all season until the week of the Dallas game, in which he played 23 of a possible 67 snaps.

The Chiefs are hoping Hali can boost their defense, which has struggled all season. One starting outside linebacker, Dee Ford, also wasn’t scheduled to practice Wednesday because of a back injury.

The Chiefs play on Sunday against the Giants in New York. If neither Ford nor Hali is available, their outside linebackers would be starters Justin Houston and Frank Zombo and reserve Tanoh Kpassagnon.

Kpassagnon, the Chiefs’ second-round draft pick, has played only 12 defensive snaps this season. A defensive lineman in college, the 289-pound Kpassagnon has been learning a new position this season.

"I think I’ve got the coverages down," he said. “I’m really getting to know the playbook more. The most difficult thing is just knowing what to do in the play because coverage can change depending on what the receivers are doing. That’s what I’m still getting used to but I’m getting better at it.