Joe Mays: Kansas City Chiefs Activate LB From IR, Waive Jerry Franklin


The Kansas City Chiefs defense just got that much stouter.

The team officially activated Joe Mays from IR, who has missed the first nine weeks of 2014 due to a surgically repaired tendon in his wrist. To make room, the Chiefs also waived linebacker Jerry Franklin, whose primary role came in the form of kickoff coverage.

It’s unclear as to whether Mays will start against the Buffalo Bills. However, being that Kansas City chose to activate him, signs are looking up, especially for Week 11 versus Seattle.

Throughout 2013, Pro Football Focus (PFF, subscription required) ranked Mays, a strong-side inside linebacker/“thumper,” No. 15 among inside linebackers in run defense—a facet that Kansas City could use some help in.

PFF grades the Chiefs defense No. 3 in pass rush and No. 7 in coverage. However, the unit is slotted at No. 22 in defending against the ground game.

Whenever he’s deemed healthy, you can expect Mays to replace James-Michael Johnson in the starting lineup.