Analysis

Chiefs Lose Starting Safety Juan Thornhill for the Playoffs

The Kansas City Chiefs got some bad news on Monday, as rookie safety, Juan Thornhill, suffered a torn ACL in Sunday’s win over the Los Angeles Chargers and will miss the playoffs.

Thornhill went down in the end zone during the second quarter with a non-contact injury, and it appeared to be major. Following the game, Head Coach Andy Reid said that Thornhill would have an MRI to reveal the severity of the injury on Monday, with the results displaying a torn ACL.

Thornhill has been a star at free safety this season, starting all 16 games during the regular season, recording 57 tackles, 5 passes defended, 3 interceptions, and 1 touchdown. Thornhill allowed only 13 completions on 28 receptions thrown his way this season, good for an opponent’s passer rating of 43.0.

With Thornhill done for the season and now focused on the rehab process, the Chiefs will now look to the depth chart to replace the rookie. Armani Watts replaced Thornhill after his departure from the game and is the most likely candidate to take over the free safety position. Watts played the safety position last year before a season-ending groin injury, but the Chiefs also have veteran Daniel Sorensen and Jordan Lucas who can fill in for Thornhill. Another option could be Kendall Fuller, who has been practicing at the free safety position with Watts.

The Chiefs have a full bye week to weigh their options at the free safety position after clinching the No. 2 seed in the AFC.

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