UPDATE: Friday, 12:22 p.m. Arrowhead Time
Here is some video of Kelvin Benjamin courtesy of KCTV5’s Dani Welniak from Benjamin’s first practice with the Chiefs on Friday. He is wearing No. 81. Benjamin will be thrown right into the mix with Sammy Watkins set to mix extended time.
UPDATE: Friday, 8:39 a.m. Arrowhead Time
The Kansas City Chiefs make the deal official, with the surprise release of defensive end Jarvis Jenkins as the corresponding move.
We have signed free agent WR Kelvin Benjamin.— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) December 7, 2018
DE Jarvis Jenkins has been waived. pic.twitter.com/Ixmx6cAoIR
This feels telling when it comes to the Sunday status for Sammy Watkins. Jenkins has been on the field for 23 percent of defensive snaps this season—a contributor for the Chiefs. The fact that the Chiefs didn’t waive or send one of their six other receivers back to the practice squad makes me curious about Watkins’ practice status Friday and ultimately for the game against the Ravens.
UPDATE: Thursday, 7:06 p.m. Arrowhead Time
The Chiefs have signed Kelvin Benjamin to a one-year deal following visit.
One-year deal, taking Benjamin through the end of this season. He will be a free agent again this winter. https://t.co/mNnsjPRYqV— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 7, 2018
Recently-cut wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin is visiting the Kansas City Chiefs Thursday, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Former Bills' WR Kelvin Benjamin, who cleared waivers yesterday, is visiting the Kansas City Chiefs today, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 6, 2018
Benjamin, 27, originally entered the NFL as the 28th overall pick made by the Carolina Panthers in the 2014 NFL Draft. Benjamin stayed with the Panthers until they traded him to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for a third-round pick back in late October 2017.
In 18 games over the past two seasons with the Bills, Benjamin caught 39 passes for 571 receiving yards and two touchdowns. The Bills released both Benjamin and Andre Holmes earlier this week.
“Let me start by saying I appreciate, just like I do every player, what they did,” McDermott said, via BuffaloNews.com on Wednesday. “It obviously didn’t work, and those are hard decisions to make because those are human decisions. The important thing for us is that we continue to take swings, and that’s what we did; we stepped up to the plate and you take a swing. Some of those are going to work and some of those aren’t. The only way you can get a hit is if you take a swing. The important thing, just as important for us I believe, is when things are no longer right for us as a football team and where we are and the vision we’re trying to chase, that we move forward. That’s what we did.”
The Chiefs bringing Benjamin is interesting to me given the health of Sammy Watkins, who has missed most of the past two games (he had five snaps against the Rams) due to his foot being “tender.” Watkins returned to practice Wednesday but was limited.
In addition, Chiefs general manager Brett Veach has shown a tendency of acquiring former high picks with players like offensive lineman Cam Erving (first round), Reggie Ragland (second round) and Sammy Watkins (first round).
Coincidentally, Ragland and Watkins are former Buffalo Bills like Benjamin.