[Kansas City.com] As another left tackle went down last week, the news was met in the locker room with the equivalent of crickets chirping in the background. Maybe the Chiefs are used to this now, after Willie Roaf’s hamstring injury last year and subsequent retirement.
Maybe they’re still numb.
“It doesn’t make any difference to me,” Larry Johnson said Friday after the team’s final practice before the 49ers. “Because I still run. Regardless if they put five backups back there, I’ve still got to run. I’m not one of those little guys that if an offensive lineman goes down, they (wet) in their beds because they’re scared (about) getting hit.”
“I get hit anyway because of the way I run, so it doesn’t matter to me.”
A few feet away, Jordan Black casually prepared for his first start at left tackle in the post-Roaf era. Black caught a hailstorm of criticism last year when he filled in for Roaf and the Chiefs struggled. That’s one of the drawbacks of following a future Hall of Famer.
But stepping in for Kyle Turley, who’ll probably sit today with back problems, won’t be easy, either. Black will face two of the 49ers’ best pass rushers in Marques Douglas and Manny Lawson. Kansas City expressed interest in Lawson this spring before the draft.
The Chiefs have played nearly a game and a half without quarterback Trent Green, who was knocked unconscious in the season opener. They scaled back their play-calling to accommodate journeyman quarterback Damon Huard, but coach Herm Edwards had hoped to air it out a little more today.
That plan isn’t expected to change minus Turley.
“We’re still going to try and come out and be very balanced offensively,” Edwards said. “We’re going to try to throw it as well as run it.”