Dee Ford injury update: Chiefs linebacker “should be ready for training camp”
By Matt Conner
Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said that pass rusher Dee Ford is expected to be ready for training camp as he recovers from a back injury.
Even during offseason team activities and the Kansas City Chiefs mandatory minicamp, Dee Ford has been unable to join his teammates for a full day of practice.
Last season, Ford dealt with a serious back injury that limited him after the first three weeks of the season. He returned in Week 6 for a stretch but missed the entire second half of the season. After being inactive week by week for some time, the Chiefs finally placed him on injured reserve in early December.
From there, Ford has been limited in his workouts with the team, joining a handful of others in the recovery process (e.g. center Mitch Morse, wide receiver De’Anthony Thomas) by working out on his own instead of with the entire team. Yet in his remarks at the end of minicamp on Thursday, head coach Andy Reid said that he still expected Ford to be ready when it matters most.
"Dee Ford should be ready for camp. Again, making progress. He’s worked his tail off. He was able to do a little bit of individual stuff."
More from Arrowhead Addict
- Former Chiefs cornerback in legal trouble in Las Vegas
- Chiefs Kingdom: Get ready to break contract news
- Chiefs news: Travis Kelce wants to host fan ‘chug-off’ in Germany
- Podcast: Breaking down the Chiefs biggest roster battles
- KC Chiefs send Dave Merritt to NFL coaching accelerator
The fact that Ford wasn’t even able to fully work out on his own sounds contrary to any notion that he will be ready for pads and full-on practices in just six weeks. But Reid sounded confident even as he was well aware of Ford’s progress. He did hedge a bit with a “should be ready” instead of “will be ready” but that’s still a high expectation.
The Chiefs have some younger players who could grow into a potential starting role opposite Justin Houston in the Chiefs pass rush on the outside. They drafted Breeland Speaks from Ole Miss in the second round, and Brett Veach commented that he expects him to contribute immediately and envisions him as a three-down player. There is also last year’s second round pick in Tanoh Kpassagnon, who Andy Reid also complimented for his work in OTAs.
That said, both Speaks and Kpassagnon are still very raw and very inexperienced, and the Chiefs would much prefer a healthy and ready Ford as opposed to trusting someone else to make the leap because the team absolutely needs it.
Here’s hoping Ford can turn the corner with his health and find the rhythm that allowed him to reach double-digit sacks and lead the team in the category just two seasons ago.