KANSAS CITY, Mo. — When the Chiefs released running back Charcandrick West in August to allow him a chance to catch on with another team, he never truly believed he get a chance back with his hold team.
“It was a dream but I guess not this year,” West said. “I didn't think I'd be back this year. It's a blessing, a blessing in disguise.”
West found himself pondering retirement and writing a book about this careeer when the Chiefs released Kareem Hunt on Friday.
“It took some time, they had things to work through,” he said. “But when I got that call, it was a blessing see a 913, 816 number calling my phone.”
Shortly after his release in August, West signed on with the New York Jets. The club released him before the start of the season. West then went on a series of workouts for various teams but nothing come of the tryouts. He admits feeling frustrated.
“Just keep working out, keep working out, working out, working out and not getting the results that I wanted,” West said. “But I think there's worse things in life than people telling me no or I can't do this or I do that. I'm still standing here, so it's just motivation to me.”
West spent the past four seasons with the Chiefs, rushing for 999 yards and adding another 552 receiving yards. He led the club in rushing with 634 yards in 2015 after stepping into the lineup for injured starter Jamaal Charles.
Head coach Andy Reid says West can add a smiling face and positive energy to the club's locker room.
“Big time energy giver,” Reid said. “That’s what he does. He can play, too. I don’t want to slight him on that. He has always been an energy guy and always comes to work with a smile on his face, loves to practice. All those intangible things, he’s got.”
West built a close relationship with fellow running back Spencer Ware during their time with the Chiefs, and Ware is happy to see his friend back in the fold.
“It's good to see him back and he seems ready,” Ware said. “Same type of person that he was before he left, so it's good to have him back in the locker room.
The Chiefs worked out West along with former Denver running back C.J. Anderson earlier this week. The personality West brings back to the team played a factor in his Kansas City reunion, Reid said.
“It didn't hurt,” Reid said. “But you are looking at a good football player too that understands our protections and the runs and so on. That was also a big part of it.”
During training camp, West though the team's offense would be good, but nothing like the success it's experienced through a 10-2 start. He kept close tabs on the team watching from his home in Dallas.
“This is my family, of course I watch and cheer these guys on, tell them good game, congrats,” West said. “You can see on Twitter sometimes I get into it when people are talking about them. But this is my family, it's always going to be a family.”
West understands why he's back with the Chiefs, and he relishes the opportunity to reclaim his role as a player and the team's biggest cheerleader on the bench.
“Man, anything they need me to,: West said. “If it's a smile, a touchdown, a first down, a kickoff return, a kickoff. I'm just happy to be here."