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Joe Mays returns to practice for Chiefs, not expected to play vs. Jets

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The Chiefs LB has made his return ... but he's not on the roster yet.

Peter Aiken

The Kansas City Chiefs lost starting inside linebacker Joe Mays to a wrist injury before the season but he is on his way to a return. Chiefs coach Andy Reid confirmed that Mays, who was placed on short term IR before the season, is getting back to practice this week.

"Joe is going to practice [Wednesday]," Reid said. "Limited role, we are just going to get him back in the swing of things. Again, we look forward to doing that. Start getting himself back into football shape there."

The short term IR rules state that once he comes back, the Chiefs have three weeks to decide what to do with him. They can activate him to the roster or they can place him on season-ending IR.

"So our doctors told us it was time to start getting him back doing football things," Reid said. "But we are just going to take it nice and slow with him."

If you had told me before the season that the Chiefs would lose both starting inside linebackers -- Mays and Derrick Johnson -- and their defense would be ranked No. 3 overall, I would've said you were lying. So the Chiefs are doing a nice job replacing those two with James-Michael Johnson and Josh Mauga. Adding Mays back to the roster at some point will only make the Chiefs stronger.