Injured Chiefs Ready for Pads

Tony Moeaki

As if Chiefs fans, players and coaches needed any more reason to be excited at the onset of training camp. The walking wounded are back and the first preseason game versus the Arizona Cardinals is just two weeks away.

And even though camp just started, you'd have to think everyone is ready to run through the tunnel at Arrowhead. But none more so than three of the most important pieces to the Chiefs fortunes in 2012.

When the Chiefs put on the pads on Sunday, they'll get their first true glance of some of their injured stars. For Eric Berry, Jamaal Charles and Tony Moeaki, they're each back on the practice field and not pushing a sled or doing rehab exercises as the rest of their teammates practice in the relenting heat.

"I know that's all a big question about those guys – they all passed the physical and we will be working with all of them in practice," Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel said after practice on Friday.

"Tony (Moeaki), Eric (Berry) and Jamaal (Charles). We might have to manage them a little bit if they get a little irritated in their joint that they had their surgery on, but they should be good to go. They're excited and they're ready and want to go."

Of the three, Charles may be the most important to what Kansas City wants to do on offense this season - that's run the football.

"I feel like me again. I feel like I have my swag back and my knee feels better. They cleared me to go so I was on the field today," Charles said.

The question that everyone is asking is just how long it will take for the former Longhorn to regain the form that saw him rush for back-to –back 1,000-yard seasons in 2009 and 2010.

"I don't know. I am just going to go out there and prepare every day. I'm going to work hard and let the hard work pay off on Sundays. That is why I am here. I am here to get better so every day I come in I work hard," he said.

Throughout the offseason, Moeaki was the slowest to heal and within the fan base was the biggest question mark in regard to whether or not he would be ready to go in St. Joe.

"It's good; it just feels good to be back out there with the team, the first day trying to build a good team here. We are off to a good start," Moeaki said after practice.

"It was exciting to get back. It seems like a long time when you are out for so long, so today was a day that we were all looking forward to."

On the other side of the ball defensive standouts, safeties Eric Berry and Kendrick Lewis, went through workouts. Berry participated with no restrictions and Lewis, who's recovering from a separated shoulder, was wearing a brace to limit the chances of hyper extending his shoulder.

With Sunday's workout expected to hit 100 degrees on the field, and despite the fact all the players passed their physicals – reps could be limited for those coming back from injury. "Yes, we'll put them in there and they're going to do everything," Crennel said.

"The only thing that we might do is we might limit their reps. If they're going to get 50 reps in a day, we might cut it to 40. They're good to go. They're going to do everything."

And that's good news.

Dave Barr is a 19-year sports radio veteran who has worked for ESPN, Sporting News Radio and in markets like Cincinnati, Little Rock and Tulsa. Currently Barr is the program director for 1450 The Score in Joplin, Missouri and hosts the A.M. Grind weekday mornings from 6-9am. Want more Dave follow him @Daveabarr on Twitter.


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