[Kansas City.com] Other than watching from the sideline in sweats, Eric Warfield had little to keep him busy during Sunday’s game between the Chiefs and Washington.
Warfield made small talk with some teammates. At one point, he took a seat on the bench between kicker Lawrence Tynes and punter Dustin Colquitt, usually the sign of genuine boredom for a position player.
Warfield, a former starting cornerback, should have more to do during this Sunday’s game at Miami. Coach Dick Vermeil said Warfield would probably play for the first time this season.
Vermeil said Warfield’s playing status would not be affected by the availability of starting cornerback Dexter McCleon, who injured a groin muscle against Washington and left the game early.
McCleon had problems covering Washington’s wide receivers, including Santana Moss, before his injury. Because Warfield – in his first game back from a four-game NFL suspension – was inactive and unavailable to play, McCleon was replaced by Dewayne Washington.
Vermeil indicated Warfield’s inactivity was in no way punishment for the suspension for a violation of the NFL’s substance-abuse policy. He also said it had nothing to do with the way Warfield played during training camp and the preseason.
“People want to make a big deal of Eric Warfield,” Vermeil said. “Leave the guy alone. Let him come back and play football. He’s gone through his suspension. He did a great job working out physically and doing what he was allowed to do. Now he’s got to get back to playing football and getting back into football shape. It takes some time. He was gone for four weeks. He didn’t make a tackle or cover a receiver or do anything. Carrying that over to the field and the speed of the game, that’s tough to do.”
“He practiced as much as any cornerback practiced. He had a good training camp. He didn’t play well in the final preseason game because he was emotionally down because he knew he was facing a four-game suspension. He didn’t play as well as he’s capable of.”