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Mecole Hardman does not appear at practice during Chiefs’ Thursday media look

This would mark the first missed workout for the receiver since he returned to the field as part of his 21-day practice window.

Tennessee Titans v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman was not in attendance during Thursday’s brief media look at the team’s practice, as Kansas City continued its preparation for its Week 17 matchup against the Denver Broncos.

Considering how optimistic the team has been regarding his potential return this week, it was strange not to see Hardman — who remains on injured reserve but returned to practice two weeks ago.

On Wednesday, head coach Andy Reid said that he presumed Hardman would be available against the Broncos unless there was a setback. Hardman hasn’t played since Week 9 due to an abdomen issue.

Offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy sounded eager to see Hardman return during his weekly media appearance on Thursday.

“The biggest thing with Mecole is that he’s getting back in a groove,” said Bieniemy. “Obviously, with him participating in practice, we’re not going to rush things. We just want to make sure that he’s good, and then on top of that, we’ve got to get him back in game shape — and making sure that he could handle the necessary amount of workload that we want to give him. We’re excited. Obviously, he’s done a heck of a job, and we’ll just keep it moving from there. We’ll just take it day by day.”

There won’t be another Hardman update on Thursday. Since he is still on the injured reserve list, the Chiefs are not required to post his status within the injury report. The Chiefs have until Wednesday, January 4 (when his 21-day practice window ends), to activate him to the 53-man roster — or he is done for the season.

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