Jamaal Charles says he would have taken pay cut with Chiefs

OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 16: Jamaal Charles
OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 16: Jamaal Charles /

Jamaal Charles appeared on a recent episode of the podcast Unmatched to discuss his release from the Chiefs and signing with the Broncos.

If the Kansas City Chiefs had actually extended an offer for Jamaal Charles to stay for less money, the former Chiefs running back says he would have taken it. Instead, he’s suiting up for the rival Denver Broncos as he prepares to return from a serious knee injury once again.

After a swirl of Twitter activity that had fans made at Charles for recent remarks made after joining Denver, the running back wanted to set the record straight by appearing for an interview on Unmatched, a sports podcast featuring host Cal Jones.

On being let go from the Chiefs:

I thought maybe they’d give me a grace period, but I hadn’t performed the last two years, so at the same time I know it was about business. I think it would have been cool if they’d came and told me a pay cut, I think I would have took that pay cut because I think I owe that to them for letting me be on the team. But I feel like when I got that call, it was just one of them… okay, if it can happen to Peyton Manning, it can happen to anybody.

On the emotions of being cut:

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I felt like I was free. I won’t lie. I felt like I was a free person. But then that’s when reality started kicking in about me not having a team as well. I was like, “Dang.” I just hung with my wife and my kids. It was fun being around my family this whole period of time, but not having a job and doing everything on your own that you’ve been doing with the team, nine years working with the team, dressed in that uniform. Now you gotta scramble and find clothes for you to work out, find shoes to work out. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if I play football or not, I still have to get myself healthy. For a team or Jamaal, I still have to get myself healthy.

On whether it was really personal:

It wasn’t personal to me. I have a lot of love for the city. I’ve been here nine years. It’s not personal to me. It’s more personal to the Chiefs than it was to me … I love this community. I did a lot. I’ve sweat and bled and two ACLs and a meniscus, I let it all out here in Kansas City. My heart will always be here in Kansas City. It’s nothing personal. I’m excited for what the next chapter has for me. I had no choice. It’s not like I asked for a trade. They let me go. At the end of the day, I will always love the Hunt family and the organization is first class as well … I’ll miss them forever.

Listen to the full episode of Unmatched here.