With roster cuts looming on Saturday, the Kansas City Chiefs got a jump on the 53-man roster by releasing veteran wide receiver Freddie Mitchell. They have replaced him on the roster with offensive tackle Thomas Barnett who was released on Tuesday.
The former Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver was expected to play Friday night in St. Louis against the Rams. Mitchell was practicing with the Chiefs this week and according to Head Coach Dick Vermeil was playing with no discomfort to his injured knee.
Mitchell has yet to step foot in a regular season game for the Chiefs. Even healthy he was in a battle to make this club with Marc Boerigter and rookie Craphonso Thorpe.
Initially the Chiefs were not happy with Mitchell's decision to put off his knee surgery to correct his torn Meniscus. That could have played a factor in their decision to cut Mitchell before Saturday's deadline.
When Mitchell signed this past June, the Chiefs expected him to compete for a starting spot. But shortly into camp, he tore his Meniscus and was told by team doctors that he needed surgery.
After consulting with his own doctors, Mitchell chose to rehab the injury against the wishes of the Chiefs. Until Monday he was unable to go full speed in practice and he was expected to play significant minutes against the Rams.
Vermeil indicated to reporters today that they would keep five receivers. With the release of Mitchell it appears that Boerigter, Thorpe and Chris Horn all have made the final roster. However, the Chiefs could make a play for another veteran receiver from Saturday evening after the final cuts are announced.
Eddie Kennison and Samie Parker are penciled in as the starters for opening day against the New York Jets. The Chiefs really don't want to use Dante Hall in the offense this season. With his knee banged up, they can't afford to use him in any other situations but special teams to start the season.
Chiefs Cut Freddie Mitchell
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