Chiefs deal RB Knile Davis to Green Bay

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs sent running back Knile Davis to the Green Bay Packers Tuesday in exchange for a conditional late-round draft pick, according to multiple media reports. The team has yet to confirm the transaction.

Kansas City Chiefs Knile Davis runs down field during a preseason game against Seattle on Saturday, Aug. 13 in Kansas City, Mo. (Emily DeShazer/The Topeka Capital-Journal)
Kansas City Chiefs Knile Davis runs down field during a preseason game against Seattle on Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016 in Kansas City, Mo. (Emily DeShazer/The Topeka Capital-Journal)

Davis played sparingly for the Chiefs on offense through the first four games, playing just nine snaps at running back. The fourth-year veteran played primarily on special teams, averaging 21 yards on six kickoff returns.

The Chiefs listed Davis inactive on Sunday against the Oakland Raiders. Wide receiver De’Anthony Thomas took Davis’ spot on the game day roster. Coach Andy Reid on Monday called the move a football decision.

“We had the other three running backs up,” Reid said. “That was really the only reason. That was it De’Anthony could go in at running back in an emergency situation — likewise (Tyreek Hill) could. We just thought we had enough running backs up for what we needed.”

The return of Jamaal Charles in the backfield and the emergence of Hill as a kick returner appeared to make the veteran Davis expendable in the eyes of the Chiefs. The return of Charles pushed Davis to fourth-string at running back, and increasingly gave way to Hill as a kick returner.

The Chiefs have yet to confirm the trade or make a corresponding move to replace Davis on the active roster. The team can activate linebacker Justin Houston from the physically unable to perform list starting this week. However, as along as Houston practices only and does not play in games, the Chiefs have up to 21 days to add Houston to the 53-man roster.

Davis is in the final year of his rookie contract, which includes a prorated signing bonus of approximately $126,500 that applies to the Chiefs salary cap this year. The Chiefs also absorbs the prorated portion of his salary of $675,00.

How much salary cap relief, if any, the Chiefs gain depends on what contract takes Davis’ place. The league minimum salary of $450,000 would only net the Chiefs salary cap relief of about $150,000.

The NFLPA salary cap report currently shows the Chiefs with $10,844,392 available cap dollars this season.

Matt Derrick is the lead beat writer for and the Topeka Capital-Journal. Use the contact page to reach him or find him on Twitter: @MattDerrick.