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Dexter McCluster's Carries Again Brings Up Question Of How Chiefs Will Use Him

When the Kansas City Chiefs drafted Dexter McCluster he was labeled on the roster as a receiver. This was slightly confusing to a few of us because he had rushed in his final two years Ole Miss 109 and 181 times compared to 44 catches in both 2008 and 2009.

So we figured he'd be more of a running back (and that's why some early criticisms came out regarding the pick because, as a running back, he's awfully similar to Jamaal Charles).

But the Chiefs labeled him as a receiver and during camp that's where he took the majority of his snaps.

But on the Chiefs fourth series of Friday night's loss 20-10 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, it was the McCluster as the feature back.

He carried the ball five of the first six plays for 25 yards.

Maybe the Chiefs were just giving him carries in the instance he has to carry it now and again in 2010. But I found it interesting that, for that one series, he was the feature back, and not someone taking one carry here and there. In 2010 I expected him to carry the ball sporadically -- not five of six plays in one series.

So that brings up the question, once again, of how the Chiefs will use him in 2010.

The problem with playing him at running back too often is that it's already a crowded backfield. Thomas Jones and Jamaal Charles figure to get the vast majority of the carries so McCluster can't be considered too big of a threat at running back (barring injury).

But if the Chiefs do plan on playing him at running back more often, it would have some roster implications. For example, extended playing time at running back for McCluster would mean Jerheme Urban is all but guaranteed a spot on the roster as the receiver behind McCluster. Maybe another bottom-of-the-roster receiver sneaks in because of that.

It would also mean that the last running back spot would come between Kestahn Moore, Jackie Battle or Javarris Williams, instead of two or all of them potentially making the roster.

We'll never get a straight answer out of the Chiefs on McCluster's role in the offense because one of their advantages at this point is that people just don't know where he'll play.