Many of you that have been reading the site for a while know that I was skeptical of the Kansas City Chiefs player workouts when the idea was first brought up at the start of the NFL lockout. I wasn't sure if it would be worth it because if a player got injured he would be, to put it eloquently, totally screwed.
An injury during the lockout would be on the player and the team could potentially part ways with him without offering any sort of compensation.
Chiefs QB Matt Cassel recognized the injury concern -- he actually called it the biggest concern of the entire three-day minicamp -- and told me in a phone interview on Thursday that its something they discussed as a team.
"Definitely it was a concern," Cassel said on Thursday afternoon, "and that was probably the biggest concern of the whole camp -- just making sure everyone was taken care of and stays healthy. When you get out there with a group of guys it's easy to get super competitive and all of a sudden you let that competitiveness get the best of you and someone does they shouldn't be doing right now.
"I addressed that multiple times, especially going into the camp, and we made sure to remind guys. Thankfully we got out of there healthy today."
That's not to say there weren't any close calls. I noted on Thursday that WR Jonathan Baldwin made a leaping grab in the end zone and fell to the ground after the play. Cassel saw this and quickly ran up and reminded guys to be careful.
Other guys, like Rudy Niswanger, were cognizant of the injury factor but said playing football is what they've always done, it's what they're paid to do (when they're not locked out) and part of their job is to stay in shape so this was a necessity.
The good news is that, as Cassel said, the Chiefs ended the minicamp without any injuries. Let's hope the NFL lockout ends soon and this is no longer a concern.