The Kansas City Chiefs will play their first preseason game of the 2013 NFL season a week from today but they will do so without the services of backup swing tackle, Donald Stephenson.
Stephenson has injured his finger and will require surgery. According to head coach Andy Reid, that means the big fella will be on the sidelines next Friday night.
The coach also gave a rundown of some of the other camp injuries after yesterday’s practice.
“(Husain) Abdullah has a groin strain,” reported Reid. “It isn’t too, bad but we’ll see how it works out. (Tommie) Draheim has a concussion. (Donald) Stephenson had surgery on his left little finger this morning, and he’ll be out for approximately a week or so. It might be a little bit longer but probably after the New Orleans game. He should be ok. (Colin) Kelly is going to have surgery coming up here on his knee, and we’ll take it from there. We’ll get you the information after that.”
This is a little bit of a bummer for Stephenson, who had been impressing coaches in OTAs and early in camp, with his versatility. The second-year player projects to be the primary backup at both tackle positions and potentially even at guard. Reid has given Stephenson some snaps inside.
It isn’t even out of the realm of possibility that Stephenson could find himself starting at one of the guard positions eventually. Reid has said on multiple occasions that he plans to play his five best offensive lineman and if Stephenson proves to be a better guard than say, Jeff Allen and Geoff Schwartz, he could snag a starting role.
This injury, while not serious, will certainly set back Stephenson’s evaluation a bit.
We wish hima speedy return to action.