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Goodby and Good Riddance, LJ by Bryce Bade

This past week the Kansas City Chiefs released their once star running back Larry Johnson, after six and a half years with the team and only 74 yards from breaking Priest Holmes record as the leading rushing in Chiefs history.

The question now circulating the community is whether or not the Chiefs made the right move in releasing their disgruntled back. Looking at his backups while with the Chiefs the move could possibly go down as a terrible mistake, but taking Larry Johnson out of the equation opens up many opportunities for Kolby Smith, Jamaal Charles, Dantrell Savage and Jackie Battle.

The best possible replacement to take over the number one running back spot would be the most tenured back, Kolby Smith, but looking at the numbers the four backs have put up in the last few years it would be a mistake not to include Jamaal Charles in the mix. Jamaal Charles is leading the team with an average of 5.2 yards per carry, but still with a meager 152 rushing yards. Kolby Smith, recently returned to the lineup from an injury occurred earlier this season, could be a multi down back with the correct front line, with Jamaal Charles splitting the hand-offs.

In the off-season the Chiefs should look to the draft to boost their running game, as of now in the season the Chiefs look to be a top ten draft pick if not top five, the top running back the Chiefs should look to in the 2010 Draft is Toby Gerhart out of Stanford with a 2nd in the NCAA 16 touchdowns and total 1217 rushing yards on 233 attempts. If he is taken earlier than the Chiefs get then a close second would be Ryan Matthews out of Fresno State with 14 touchdowns on 205 attempts for a total 1459 yards. Then with at least next two picks the Chiefs need to take offensive lineman to fix their line because these running backs aren’t going to make a difference without front support. The last picks should all be defense to fix the terrible defensive backs that the Chiefs have.

Was it a good or bad thing getting rid of Larry Johnson? Only time will tell, but with this move it does not only get rid of the bad moral within the locker room, but also give other players a chance to showcase some talent that has been kept under lock and key for the last two or three years.

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