Red flags went up when Kansas City Chiefs placekicker Harrison Butker missed a 47-yard field goal and an extra point in Week 9 against the Tenessee Titans. It was a game the Chiefs needed to win — and one that ended up in overtime.
At the time, it was only natural that Butker’s health would be brought into question, as fans wondered whether or not he had fully recovered from an ankle injury he sustained in the season opener against the Arizona Cardinals.
Butker confirmed that his ankle had not completely healed when he spoke to the media that week.
“I’m not at 100%,” Butker told reporters in the locker room before Wednesday’s practice. “If I was at 100%, I’d be doing full steps on my kickoffs or going back the 10 yards and everything.”
Butker may have been working his way back from injury, but he was hopeful that his condition would continue to improve and that he would be back to full strength sooner rather than later.
“I would hope that it will continue to keep getting getter,” he said. “I mean, it has [gotten better]. Every week, it’s gotten better. It feels better after every game. So I have hopes that I’ll be at 100% soon.”
Skip ahead to this past Sunday night’s thrilling fourth-quarter victory against the Los Angeles Chargers, and it would seem that Butker’s prediction that he would continue to get better is coming to fruition. Butker was perfect in the game, making all of his extra points and hitting three field goals, including a 52-yarder that he made in the first quarter.
On Tuesday afternoon, Chiefs special teams coordinator Dave Toub agreed that Butker looked good, noting that he had a strong warmup before the game. However, Toub cautioned against the idea that this meant Butker was back to full strength.
“I don’t know if he’s ever going to be 100% this year,” said Toub.
It is unlikely the Chiefs will provide any further updates on Butker’s health, as Toub admitted Tuesday that he suggested Butker stop discussing his injury with the media.
Regardless of no more injury discussion, things do seem to be trending in the right direction. Butker certainly looked more comfortable against the Chargers this past Sunday than he has at any other point this season.
In Toub’s mind, that’s good enough.
“He was out there; he had a great warmup, and he looked good, and he performed. It was good to see, and he was happy, and everybody was happy.”