With a No. 1 seed in the AFC and wild-card round bye secured, the Kansas City Chiefs could rest some of their starters against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 17.
Though head coach Andy Reid did not fully commit to sitting specific starters for the game during his press conference on Monday, it appears some could have a break before the playoffs start.
The who-factor will be decided once players go through treatment with Vice President of Sports Medicine and Performance Rick Burkholder and his staff in the early stages of this week.
“I’ve been down this road where I’ve had opportunities to rest guys — we’ll do that, we’ll rest up some guys,” Reid said. “There are certain guys that will have the opportunity to rest up, but everybody will be ready to go as long as they’re physically ready to go. We’ll make that decision down the road.”
The last time the Chiefs sat several starters was against the Denver Broncos on Dec. 31, 2017, when they were locked in as the No. 4 playoff seed. In that game, quarterback Patrick Mahomes made his NFL debut stepping in for an inactive Alex Smith.
Other notable players not available for that game included wide receiver Tyreek Hill, tight end Travis Kelce, cornerback Marcus Peters, safety Ron Parker and linebacker Derrick Johnson.
Of course, the Chiefs didn’t have a bye week for the first round of the playoffs then. Though this year’s scenario is different, Reid seems accepting of resting some of his contributors.
“I feel comfortable if needed here to rest guys, which I’m leaning in that direction,” Reid said. “I’m confident we can do it the right way and I’m not worried about that. If you get the guys freshened up, I think it can be a positive for you. These guys aren’t going to forget the plays. We have a number of plays on both sides of the ball. They won’t forget how to play.”
The Chiefs’ first playoff game would occur almost three weeks after beating the Atlanta Falcons.