The Kansas City Chiefs have confirmed the release of RB Jamaal Charles.
“On behalf of my family and the entire Kansas City Chiefs team, I’d like to thank Jamaal Charles for his contributions and dedication over the last nine seasons,” Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt said. “Jamaal has been one of the most prolific players in our organization’s history, and I have an enormous amount of respect for what he has accomplished. He’ll always be a part of the Chiefs family, and we’ll be ready to honor him for his outstanding playing career when the time is right.”
“I have a great deal of admiration for Jamaal Charles, his toughness, and what he’s been able to achieve in his time in Kansas City,” General Manager John Dorsey said. “These decisions are never easy, but we felt it was in the best interests of the club to move on at this time. We wish Jamaal and his family the best of luck in their next step.”
“I’ve been privileged to work with a lot of talented players over the years, and Jamaal Charles ranks up there with the great ones,” Head Coach Andy Reid said. “I appreciate the way he came to work every day, he gave us everything he had day-in and day-out. I’ve said it before, I think he’s a future Hall of Famer.”
Back in January, Charles admitted that he wasn’t sure what the future holds for him but he plans to be playing football again in 2017.
“I honestly don’t know what the future holds for me,” Charles said, via JamaalCharles25.com. “…What I do know is that I still want to play football. I was only 29 years old this season. My goal right now is to just focus on the now and my rehab and let the rest sort itself out later.”
Charles explained that his decision to undergo surgery on both of his knees back in November came after the team decided to place him on injured reserve.
“The team put me on injured reserve, and we talked about it, and decided to have him clean out the other knee as well,” Charles writes. “That one wasn’t as bad, but there was some stuff in there. It made sense to do it so I could just heal up and go out there feeling the same way in both knees, just completely ready.”
The Chiefs have been very busy the past few days, locking up S Eric Berry a six-year, $78 million contract and G Laurent Duvernay-Tardif to a five-year, $41.25 million extension, so they had to find some cap space somewhere.
There had been talk about Charles being a cap casualty dating back to last year, given that he has dealt with injuries in recent years and the Chiefs have been able to replace his production with cheaper running backs like Spencer Ware and Charcandrick West.
It’s also worth mentioning that the Chiefs signed veteran C.J. Spiller to a contract last week, which further indicated that they could be parting ways with Charles this offseason.
Charles, 30, was in the final year of his four-year, $28 million contract that included $8.3 million guaranteed and was set to make a base salary of $3.75 million for the 2017 season.
According to OverTheCap.com, releasing Charles will free up $7 million in available cap space while creating no in dead money.
In 2016, Charles appeared in three games and rushed for 40 yards on 12 carries (3.3 YPC) to go along with two receptions for 14 yards receiving and a touchdown.