Jamaal Charles’ possible ACL injury focal point of Chiefs’ lows against Bears

Oct. 11, 2015; Kansas City, MO; Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) changes directions on Chicago's Shea McClellin (50) during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. (Chris Neal/The Topeka Capital-Journal)
Oct. 11, 2015; Kansas City, MO; Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles (25) changes directions on Chicago’s Shea McClellin (50) during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. (Chris Neal/The Topeka Capital-Journal)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — When running back Jamaal Charles hobbled off the field, Kansas City was beating the Chicago Bears, 17-3.

His absence coincided with an impending Chiefs offensive implosion and the Chiefs (1-4) fell to the Bears (2-3), 18-17.

Lots of things went right and lots of things went right. Here are five things that didn’t go the Chiefs’ way and five that did.


• Running back Jamaal Charles went down halfway through the third quarter with what appeared to be a non-contact injury to his right knee.

Charles couldn’t put any pressure on his right leg and had to be helped off the field by linebacker Justin Houston. He was taken to the locker room for further evaluation shortly after being helped off the field.

Here’s a GIF of the play:

“Jamaal Charles looks, preliminary reports, it probably looks like a torn ACL than anything,” coach Andy Reid said Sunday after the game. “He’ll have an MRI on it tomorrow and we’ll see how that goes.”

If it is indeed a torn ACL, it would be the second torn ACL of Charles’ NFL career. Charles tore the ACL in his left knee in 2011.

Before Charles went out with the injury, he had 12 carries for 58 yards rushing and one reception for 26 yards receiving.

• The offensive line allowed quarterback Alex Smith to be sacked three times on the day, bringing his season total to 21. If this pace keeps up, Smith is en route to 67 sacks on the season. That many sacks would put him No. 4 all-time in times sacked during a season.

• Typically, kicker Cairo Santos brings his A-game. Last week, Santos booted a perfect 7 of 7 for a Chiefs franchise record. But today was different. The Brazil native was just 1 of 3 on field goal attempts. He drilled his first field goal, but the next two were nowhere close to going in. The second field goal attempt was blocked by Bears linebacker Pernell McPhee. The third field goal was a 66-yard attempt that even Santos knew, most likely wasn’t going in.

“We knew it was outside my range,” Santos said. “But we had to give it a chance.”

• This was the second time a team has come back in the fourth quarter against the Chiefs this season. During Week 2, the Chiefs lead the Denver Broncos 24-17 with 2:27 left in the game. In what can only be described as crazily unprecedented, Denver scored twice in that time span to win the game.

• Smith completed 16 of 30 passes for 181 yards passing. Those 181 yards passing are Smith’s lowest since November 30, 2014 when he threw for 153 yards in the loss against Denver.


• Nose tackle Jaye Howard continued his monster season against Chicago. He was credited with a split sack on Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler that resulted in a Kansas City touchdown. Before the day was over, Howard racked up 6 tackles, 1 sack, 2 tackles for loss and 1 quarterback hit.

• Rookie linebacker Ramik Wilson made his first career NFL start on the afternoon. He wasn’t ending there. On the Bears’ second drive of the ballgame, he used his instincts and was in the right place and the right time.

Cutler was backed up into his own end zone, with the Kansas City defense coming full speed ahead. Cutler was sacked by Howard and defensive end Allen Bailey, but before Cutler made his way to the ground, Bailey stripped the ball and Wilson pounced on it.

Fellow Georgia Bulldog turned Chiefs wide receiver  Chris Conley said he was happy to see Wilson earn the starting position this week.

“Ramik is one hell of a player,” Conley said. “He has a real nose for the football and lots of instincts. I’m glad to see he’s in the mix early and often.”

Throughout the rest of the day, Wilson amassed four tackles on top of that fumble recovery.

• Punter Dustin Colquitt continued to earn his paycheck. Colquitt punted seven times on the day, pinning four of those inside the 20-yard line and one was a touchback.

• Wilson wasn’t the only Chiefs player to get his first NFL touchdown. Wide receiver De’Anthony Thomas found his way into the end zone for the first time on a 19-yard pass from Smith.

• In Charles’ absence, running back Charcandrick West had seven carries for 31 yards rushing. Both of those numbers are career highs for the 2nd-year player out of Abilene Christian. He also added one reception for five yards receiving.

“Whatever they call on me to do, I’m going to be there,” West said. “It’s heartbreaking to see one of my friends go down, my brother go down. Whatever the team needs me to do, I’m going to be ready to go that.”


Amie Just is a contributing writer for ChiefsDigest.com. Use the contact page to reach her or find her on Twitter: @Amie_Just.