After flagging the franchise to left tackle Orlando Brown in March, the two bosses were unable to reach a long-term agreement with him by last week’s deadline.
Brown also didn’t sign his franchise tender, so he wouldn’t technically be fined if he refused to report for training camp.
With up and back players already in camp, coach Andy Reed said on Friday that he’s not even sure if Brown will turn up.
“You know, I don’t know that. So I don’t know if he’ll be here or not,” Reed said at his press conference. “If he’s here, great. And if not, we move on. That’s what we did in the past. This isn’t the first time I’ve gone through something like this. So my thing is we just go. And whoever’s next to step in there – we know [left guard] Joe Thony can do it in a heartbeat. So if we want to go in that direction, we can go in that direction. We have some new faces who can do that, too.”
Although Reed mentioned Tony by name, he later said the team was not at the point where it needed to find out a Brown replacement.
When asked if he was surprised that no deal was made with Brown, Reed somewhat shrugged it off by saying, “Things happen.”
“That’s the name of this game, where we are today,” Reid said. “Maybe it’s been for a few years – go back to Babe Ruth and move to the Yankees from the Red Sox. [You have] A great player, that kind of thing in professional sports continues. And you work through it. You work through him as a player, you work through him as a team, and you move forward.”
If Brown chooses to steer clear of camp, Reed said it would be difficult for the left to deal with this time.
“I mean, I’ll tell you, when you miss, you miss,” Reed said. “It just makes sense. But by saying he doesn’t have a basis, I mean, he has a basis from the plays we run and the things we do. But he missed all the OTAs and all of that, so the new stuff we put in, that’s where he’s going to have to catch up.”
Midfielder Patrick Mahomes said at his press conference on Friday that he has kept up with Brown throughout the holiday season, praising the level of football intelligence for his left tackle. But the signal caller also didn’t know if he would get the usual blind guard when starting training camp.
The Chiefs acquired Brown from the Ravens in April 2021. He started 16 games in Kansas City last season and was selected for the third time in a row to the Pro Bowl.