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Chiefs Roster Cuts: Team’s 53-Man Roster Now Set

On Tuesday the Chiefs waived or released 23 players in order to meet the NFL’s required 53-man roster limit. With the moves now completed, the team’s roster has officially come into focus.

On Tuesday, the Kansas City Chiefs announced the necessary moves in order for the team’s roster to meet the NFL’s mandated 53-player limit. In total, 23 players were waived or released by the team. Some of the more notable names on the chopping block include Josh Gordon, Daurice Fountain, Cornell Powell, Danny Shelton, Jermaine Carter, and 2022 seventh-rounder Nazeeh Johnson.

It’s not an easy day for many of these players. Most will hope to catch on with another NFL franchise or find their place on the practice squad at least. Teams can roster up to 16 players on their practice squad. For others, this will be the end of their NFL career. Here’s a recap of the players remaining on the team’s 53-man roster as well as an idea of which players could end up back on the Chiefs’ practice squad:

Chiefs 53-Man Roster Includes 26 Players On Offense

On the offense, the Chiefs have rostered 26 players including three quarterbacks, four running backs, four tight ends, and just five wide receivers. The wide receiver choices are perhaps the most surprising, as many expected the team to roster at least six wideouts, if not more. Unfortunately, as predicted, Cornell Powell missed the roster cuts despite a fairly strong preseason.

Cornell Powell, Daurice Fountain, Josh Gordon, and Corey Coleman will all hope to catch on elsewhere. Powell and Fountain could be practice squad candidates for Kansas City. At running back, the team surprised most of the NFL world when they decided not to cut Ronald Jones. Instead, they will enter the season with Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Jerick McKinnon, Isiah Pacheco, and Jones. Rookie Jerrion Ealy is a strong candidate to be added to the practice squad.

Here’s the full list of offensive players to make the Chiefs roster:

  1. Quarterbacks: Patrick Mahomes, Chad Henne, Shane Buechele

  2. Running Backs: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Jerick McKinnon, Isiah Pacheco, Ronald Jones

  3. Full Back: Michael Burton

  4. Wide Receiver: Juju Smith-Schuster, Mecole Hardman, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Skyy Moore, Justin Watson

  5. Offensive Line: Orlando Brown Jr., Joe Thuney, Creed Humphrey, Trey Smith, Andrew Wylie, Nick Allegretti, Geron Christian, Darian Kinnard, Prince Tega Wanogho


Chiefs Defense Includes 24 Players On The Initial 53-Man Roster

On the defense, the Chiefs will roster just 24 players to start the 2022 season. Some surprise cuts on the defensive side of the ball include Jermaine Carter, Danny Shelton, Elijah Lee, and Nazeeh Johnson. In the case of Carter, he signed a one-year contract with Kansas City this offseason. Despite receiving a guaranteed $1.7 million in the deal, he’s now a free agent.

Danny Shelton looked like he would be a solid depth piece for the defensive front but instead looks to have joined just too late to make his mark as a significant part of the team’s roster. Elijah Lee should be back with the team soon as reports around the team are that he will be re-added to the roster once Blake Bell lands on injured reserve prior to Week One.


Chiefs will carry TE Blake Bell (hip) on initial 53-player roster and release LB Elijah Lee, according to a source. Lee doesn't have to go through waivers as a vested veteran. I'm told the Chiefs will place Bell on IR after 53 set, and then bring back Lee to roster. — Herbie Teope (@HerbieTeope) August 30, 2022

Here are the Chiefs’ defensive players on the 53-man roster to start the 2022 season:

  1. Defensive Line: Chris Jones, Derrick Nnadi, Frank Clark, Mike Danna, George Karlaftis, Carlos Dunlap, Tershawn Wharton, Khalen Saunders, Malik Herring, Joshua Kaindoh

  2. Linebackers: Willie Gay Jr., Nick Bolton, Leo Chenal, Darius Harris

  3. Cornerbacks: L’Jarius Sneed, Trent McDuffie, Rashad Fenton, Joshua Williams, Jaylen Watson, Chris Lammons

  4. Special Teams: Harrison Butker, Tommy Townsend, James Winchester

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