SEATTLE — Kansas City running back Spencer Ware’s right knee injury might not be as bad as first feared.
Ware sprained his right knee and was carted off the field in the Chiefs’ 26-13 preseason loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Friday night. But Kansas City coach Andy Reid said after the game that X-rays came back negative and that Ware would have an MRI to further access the damage Saturday.
It was optimistic news for what appeared to be a major injury.
“We’ll just see how that turns out,” Reid said.
Russell Wilson was again brilliant for Seattle, throwing for 200 yards and a touchdown, but his performance was secondary to the injury suffered by Ware and the impact it could have for the Chiefs.
Ware remained on the turf after making a 6-yard reception on a pass from Alex Smith in the first quarter. Ware appeared to take an awkward step with his right leg during the play and team trainers were looking at his knee while he was down on the field. Players from both teams took a knee while Ware was examined, and he was taken off the field on a cart.
“Our guys like the heck out of him. He is one of our guys,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said about Ware, who began his career with the Seahawks. “I wanted to send him some love and hope he is OK.”
It was the second straight week a starter in Seattle was taken off the field with a knee injury. The Seahawks lost starting left tackle George Fant for the season last week due because of a torn ACL in his right knee.
The Chiefs have depth at running back with veteran Charcandrick West and impressive rookie Kareem Hunt, who averaged 4.3 yards per carry filling in after Ware was hurt. But Ware’s strength was his versatility as a runner and pass catcher out of the backfield. Ware rushed for 921 yards and had another 447 yards receiving last season for the Chiefs.
“Kareem got good work last week and he learned how fast this thing can change where all of a sudden you become that starter and in a position to do that,” Reid said.
Ware’s injury was part of a lackluster effort form Kansas City’s offense. Smith was 7 of 17 for just 44 yards although there were a handful of drops. The Chiefs had just 102 total yards in the first half against Seattle’s starters and Kansas City’s only touchdown came on a 95-yard kickoff return from De’Anthony Thomas .
Wilson’s stellar preseason continued , playing the entire first half and one drive of the second half. He threw a 2-yard touchdown to Tre Madden and led Seattle on four scoring drives, including three field goals by Blair Walsh. In parts of three preseason games, Wilson is 29 of 41 for 447 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.
“Everything he has done looks like it is culminating in really good, solid decision making, really clear thinking, very decisive, quick with the football,” Carroll said.
The biggest area of concern for Seattle coming into the week was how the offensive line would respond to the loss of Fant. His replacement, Rees Odhiambo, went mostly unnoticed with the exception of one play early in the third quarter. Chris Jones, in his preseason debut following offseason knee surgery, made Odhiambo whiff and engulfed Wilson for the only sack allowed by the Seahawks starters.
“Everything was pretty good for the most part,” Odhiambo said. “A few things we’ve got to clean up a little bit but for the most part I felt like we did a really good job.”
MAHOMES MADNESS: Kansas City rookie Patrick Mahomes wasn’t quite as impressive as the first two weeks of the preseason. Mahomes was 8 of 15 for 70 yards passing and led one scoring drive — a 32-yard field goal by Sam Ficken — in four possessions.
BACKUP BATTLE: The backup QB role in Seattle could be back open after Trevone Boykin had a miserable night and Austin Davis was solid. Boykin missed on all six attempts with an interception, while Davis was 5-of 5 for 64 yards and a 28-yard TD pass to Tanner McEvoy in the fourth quarter.
Carroll said the offense was so out of rhythm that he doesn’t read much into Boykin’s performance.
BENNETT SITS: Seahawks DE Michael Bennett continued to sit on the Seattle bench during the national anthem. For the second straight week, teammate Justin Britt stood next to Bennett with his right hand on Bennett’s shoulder. Cliff Avril stood for most of the anthem before sitting next to Bennett at the end.
SITTING OUT: Chiefs DE Justin Houston was expected to make his debut but was scratched due to illness. Safety Eric Berry and outside linebacker Tamba Hali were also among the veterans that rested.
Seattle wide receiver Tyler Lockett went through full pregame warmups but did not play as he continues to recover from a broken leg suffered late last season. Also sitting out was running backs Thomas Rawls and C.J. Prosise, and linebacker Michael Wilhoite.