KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -Chiefs coach Herm Edwards insisted Wednesday that he has not been told that running back Larry Johnson has a broken foot and is out for the year.
A TV report in Denver quoted an unnamed source within the Chiefs organization as saying the two-time Pro Bowl running back broke his right foot in the loss on Sunday to Green Bay and would not play again this year.
The Chiefs, who play the Denver Broncos this Sunday, have said only that it's a mid-foot sprain and he will not play this week.
``All I know is this is what I've been told. What I've been told not by that reporter but from our doctors is that his foot is still swollen,'' a feisty, defensive Edwards told reporters after practice.
``They're still trying to look at it to find out exactly where he's at. I do know this - it's very doubtful in my mind that he's going to play this week. That's what I know. Don't shoot the messenger.''
Asked directly if he had been told that Johnson's foot was broken, Edwards said:
``What I just told you is what I've been told. And that's all I care to know about, to be quite honest. What you have to understand is when you're a football coach, here's what you want to know on Monday, or on Sunday - is a player going to be available to play on Sunday? Doctor says maybe, questionable, doubtful. Once they tell me they don't think he's going to be able to play, fine. I move on. That's all I've got to do. I don't have to worry about next week. I can't control next week. I've got to concentrate on this week.''
The Chiefs (4-4) will use 34-year-old Priest Holmes and untested rookie Kolby Smith to replace Johnson, who signed a six-year, $45 million contract after holding out the entire training camp. Johnson rushed for more than 1,750 yards each of the past two seasons and has scored Kansas City's last 36 touchdowns on the ground. But he was off to a slow start and had only 559 yards on 158 carries when he was injured late in the fourth quarter against the Packers.
Ironically, he got his chance to come off the bench and start when Holmes, a three-time Pro Bowler, went down in October 2005 with a spinal injury. Now, Holmes will have an opportunity to resurrect his career while Johnson nurses an injury that could keep him out much longer than one week.
Or will it? Edwards insisted he does not know.
``If they tell me something, when I get the message this is what it is, I'll be the first to tell you,'' he said. ``I have nothing to hide. What do I have to hide? I've been told exactly what I just told you. Now, if someone else has been told something, good for them. that's what I've been told. All I want to know, to be quite honest, is he going to play Sunday? No, he's not playing. OK. Next.
``I'm the messenger. I guess I've got to take the bullets. You kill the messenger and we'll send another messenger up here tomorrow.''
In his heyday, Holmes was one of the finest backs in the league. He still holds the Chiefs' career rushing record.
Edwards has said he will not be the featured back, but Holmes said he's ready for 25 to 30 carries if that is what is needed.
``I'm a professional. I pride myself on being a professional,'' Holmes said. ``I'm definitely ready. I'm prepared. Most of all, I'm having fun. I think the two years off gave me a chance to grow personally. I've learned a lot, experienced a lot. I'm just excited. I think the element I bring to the team is one that's going to keep you guessing. If you have that element, it's definitely a good thing.''
Edwards also said that wide receiver Eddie Kennison, who has played only a few snaps all season, should be ready to play Sunday. Backup offensive lineman Will Svitek is out with a foot injury.

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