The KC Chiefs are eyeing the next Demetrius Harris. Or the next Jimmy Graham. Per a report out of Minneapolis, former Penn State basketball player Ross Travis is joining the Chiefs practice squad.
Just got a text from Chaska's Ross Travis that he's joining the Chiefs practice squad. Happy for him transitioning from hoops.— Darren Wolfson (@DWolfsonKSTP) September 7, 2015
And according to Travis himself:
Beyond thankful for the opportunity to be a Kansas City Chief! pic.twitter.com/G2Wh2Ywdj6— Ross Travis (@RossJumpkid) September 7, 2015
The Chiefs have not made any formal practice squad announcements yet. Travis is a former basketball player like Harris and Graham were. He is listed at 6'7 and 235 pounds so he has that basketball / tight end body that you'd be looking for. He saw playing time in all four years at Penn State before deciding to check out the sport he hasn't played in eight years. He spent rookie minicamp with the Houston Texans and former Penn State coach Bill O'Brien this summer.
Our Penn State blog, Black Shoe Diaries, writes this about him:
As dumb as this sounds, his basketball skill set should translate to football pretty well. The Jimmy Graham/Antonio Gates-style tight ends were undersized rebounders who knew how to use their bodies to great effect, and that's what your team is getting with this pick. Travis left Penn State with 816 rebounds to his name - an average of 6.2 per game, good for third in program history. He reportedly ran a 4.6 40-yard dash in a private workout after the season, and if that didn't put any athletic concerns to rest, this dunk over 7'1" A.J. Hammons should.
Yeah, go ahead and click through to see his dunk over that 7'1 player. There's plenty of athleticism there. However, we know this will take some time. Harris has been with the Chiefs for two years and he's still considered a raw player.
Credit to Chiefs GM John Dorsey for not letting things like "hasn't played football since freshman year of high school" stop him from evaluating a player.
We're tracking the Chiefs practice squad here.