ST. JOSEPH, Mo. — The Chiefs veterans reported to camp Thursday afternoon, filling into the Scanlon Hall on the campus of Missouri Western State University, the team’s home-away-from-home for the next three weeks.
The day began with one quick final practice for the rookies and quarterbacks. The team also officially celebrated the opening of training camp with a ceremony including team president Mark Donovan, Missouri Western president Robert Vartabedian and Mosaic Life Care CEO Mark Laney.
The team’s first full camp practice starts at 3:30 p.m., and then the work begins in earnest for the 2017 season.
Center Mitch Morse said every year brings a different team, and camp remains about each team discovering its strengths and weaknesses.
“These first few weeks of pads is finding your identity on this new team as it finds its identity itself,” Morse said.
Like many of his teammates, Morse said he was shocked at the breakup between the Chiefs and former general manager John Dorsey. Morse develop a friendship with Dorsey, who selected the third-year veteran from Missouri in the second of the 2015 NFL draft.
“He was a very close friend,” Morse said. “I owe him a lot for giving his faith in me and I wish him the best, and now we’re just focused on training camp here.”
Morse also said he has faith in new general manager Brett Veach.
“He’s a great man, he’s excited,” Morse said. “He definitely knows that to do.”
DRESSED FOR SUCCESS
The annual highlight of the veterans reporting to Chiefs training camp is what Anthony Sherman will show up wearing, and the 5-10, 242-pound fullback did not disappoint.
Sherman wore trademark denim –cutoff shorts this time — along with a black genuine buffalo leather biker vest with an embroidered eagle on the back and topped off with a red,white and blue hair band complete with a faux mullet.
The inspiration, believe it or not, came from former Royal Billy Butler.
“He just said you should do that and I went like, ‘Let me think about it,” Sherman said. “About an hour later I was like, ‘Yeah, I’m definitely going to do that.’ Order it on Amazon.”
Indeed, the vest can be ordered online for around $30.
Last year Sherman arrived shirtless wearing cutoff denim bib overalls.
“We both decided that we should try to up last year,” Sherman said. “So I tried to up it with the leather jacket and the mullet.”
Sherman’s particularly enjoyed the faux mullet hair band.
“I think it actually looks pretty sweet,” Sherman said. “I wish I actually had the hair to actually grow it long enough to do that.”
Sherman seemingly will wear anything, but declined to follow the fashion sense of quarterback Alex Smith, who arrived wearing men’s capri pants.
“I don’t know what he was wearing on the lower half, but I wouldn’t do something like that,” Sherman said.
Sherman said he’s excited about arriving for camp and Friday’s first full roster practice.
“It’s like Christmas morning,” Sherman said.
CHIEFS EXTEND WITZMANN
The Chiefs announced Thursday they signed reserve offensive lineman Bryan Witzmann to a contract extension. Terms were not immediately disclosed.
Witzmann arrived in Kansas City off waivers from Dallas prior to week one last season. He played 52 snaps for the team last season, mostly on special teams.
The 6-7, 320-pound tackle from South Dakota State was slated to be an exclusive rights free agent next season.
Coach Andy Reid values flexibility along the offensive line, and Witzmann has the ability to play swing tackle, filling in on both sides of the line. The team also tested Witzmann at guard during offeason workouts. The third-year veteran had never played guard upon his arrival in Kansas City last season.