One On One: Michael Bennett

Kansas City running back Michael Bennett is having a good time. Freshly decked out in red and gold threads, the former Pro-Bowler from the University of Wisconsin took his first snaps this week.

With Priest Holmes out for the season, if not forever, it looked as if the Chiefs had a hole at the backup running back position. They surprised everyone by swinging a trade with the New Orleans Saints what might be the best backup running back in the league.

Pushed out of New Orleans after the team drafted Heisman Trophy winner and future superstar Reggie Bush, Bennett now has the opportunity to play for a team that needs him and wants to get him involved in the offense. He doesn't care that the Chiefs already have Larry Johnson in front of him. Bennett's wanted, and that brings a smile to his face.

"It's been a long haul, you know?" said Bennett. "Transitioning from a free agent going to New Orleans, then getting traded here, it's definitely been a grind. I'm just happy to be in one place, involved with a great team, with a lot of tradition. It's been a tough road, but I'm glad to be somewhere where I'm happy and I'm going to get a chance to play."

Bennett put to rest all of the speculation on who was going to be Johnson's primary backup. Bennett will most likely will be used as a changeup to Johnson, to help ease some of the pressure and to bring the element of speed out of the backfield to Chiefs' offense.

"My job is just to come in and do what they tell me, on and off the field, and be the best playmaker I can be," said Bennett. "I think with Larry (Johnson), Dee Brown, myself, Derrick Ross, McKenzie Smith and Quentin Griffin, we've got a lot of talented guys back here. We're just pushing each other and executing and doing what we can to help the team win."

When Bennett first came to the team, he was shelved due to a lingering hamstring injury, and was relegated to learning his new offense through the playbook, coaches and film study. All of those have value, but it's tough to fully learn plays, formations and protections without practical application. Bennett will continue to practice this week and make his debut on the field on Saturday against the St. Louis Rams.

"I'm going to play in the Rams game," Bennett said. "I don't know how much, but I know I will play, and get a chance to test everything out, and to see exactly where I am in this offense. I had one or two mistakes today, but it's going to happen. I'm out there, I'm hyper, but I just have to get out there, continue to listen and study my playbook, and get my assignments down. The regular season's only 2 and a half weeks away, so it's getting close."

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