Ben­jamin ex­cited for shot with Chiefs

The Morning Call - - SPORTS -

Kelvin Ben­jamin went from catch­ing passes from Josh Allen and Nathan Peter­man on a Bills team go­ing nowhere to play­ing with Pa­trick Ma­homes on a Chiefs team bar­rel­ing to­ward the play­offs.

Ben­jamin signed a one-year con­tract to fin­ish out the sea­son Fri­day, just days af­ter the 2014 first-round pick was re­leased by the Bills. It brought an end to a dis­ap­point­ing run in which Ben­jamin strug­gled with one of the high­est drop rates in the NFL.

“I guess you could say I saw it com­ing,” Ben­jamin said af­ter his first work­out with the Chiefs, who are pre­par­ing to play the Ravens on Sun­day. “(The Chiefs) came pretty quick. I came for a visit, I liked what I saw. I liked what I heard.”

He liked ev­ery­thing about the sit­u­a­tion.

Ma­homes has al­ready proven him­self to be one of the league's most ex­cit­ing quar­ter­backs, and Ben­jamin called the Chiefs of­fense “dy­namic.” He also has the sup­port of Chiefs coach Andy Reid, who said he one more change of scenery might fi­nally un­lock the po­ten­tial that Ben­jamin has been scratch­ing at for years.

“He's been good against us, No. 1,” Reid said. “A big, phys­i­cal player. You add him to the mix, he comes in, he's ex­pe­ri­enced and he's been a good foot­ball player at this level.”

Darnold not a lock: The Jets' start­ing quar­ter­back against the Bills is still to be de­ter­mined. Coach Todd Bowles de­clined to an­nounce whether it will be rookie Sam Darnold or Josh McCown.

“We'll de­cide that on Sun­day,” Bowles said. “Be­tween him and Josh, they both had good weeks.”

If Darnold plays, it would be his first game ac­tion since be­ing in­jured Nov. 4 against the Dol­phins. Darnold was re­placed for the last three games by McCown, who had one touch­down pass and four in­ter­cep­tions while the Jets went 0-3.

Darnold is healthy, but Bowles' de­ci­sion will be about whether the rookie has his tim­ing back af­ter the three­game lay­off.

“Just us de­cid­ing whether he's ready or not,” Bowles said.

Darnold has thrown for 1,934 yards, se­cond to the Browns' Baker May­field among rook­ies. He has 11 touch­down passes along with 14 in­ter­cep­tions.

Ex­tra points: The Bears re­moved QB Mitch Tru­bisky from their in­jury list, clear­ing the way for a start Sun­day night against the Rams. Tru­bisky missed the last two games with a right shoul­der in­jury . ... Jets LB Dar­ron Lee was sus­pended four games by the NFL for vi­o­lat­ing its sub­stance abuse pol­icy. The sus­pen­sion be­gins im­me­di­ately, mean­ing Lee will sit out the team's fi­nal four games of the sea­son . ... NFL in­ter­cep­tions leader Xavien Howard was ruled out of the Dol­phins' game Sun­day against the Pa­tri­ots be­cause of a left knee in­jury. Cen­ter Jake Bren­del was also ruled out be­cause of a calf in­jury . ... The Pan­thers signed Chan­dler Catan­zaro to han­dle kick­ing du­ties against the Browns on Sun­day. Their reg­u­lar kicker, Gra­ham Gano, has been both­ered by a knee in­jury and has not prac­ticed the last two days.

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