NFL teams will be making big cuts over the next 24-plus hours as they trim their rosters down to 53 players. For one Kansas City Chiefs standout, those cuts have spelled the end of his brief tenure with the reigning AFC champs.
According to NFL insider Tom Pelissero, the Chiefs are waiving rookie safety Devon Key. The former Western Kentucky star has been described as a standout in Chiefs training camp.
Key went undrafted in the 2021 NFL Draft despite projections that he’d be a Day 3 pick. He wound up signing with the Chiefs, and impressed early on with his work ethic, tackling and ball hawking skills.
But Key struggled to make an impact in the preseason. In three games he had seven tackles and one pass defended.
With such a stacked roster, the Chiefs must have felt that his roster spot would be better used with someone else. Though that doesn’t preclude Kansas City from adding him to their practice squad after final cuts.
The #Chiefs are waiving rookie safety Devon Key, per source. A standout early in camp, Key would return on the practice squad if he's not claimed.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) August 30, 2021
The Kansas City Chiefs had 80 players on their roster to start the day. Devon Key is one of 27 players – at least – who will be cut before 4 pm EST on Tuesday.
It’s likely that numerous other undrafted rookies will lose out on their opportunity to play for the AFC champions this coming year.
Thankfully, practice squads have increased in size, so their NFL dreams may not be over just yet.
We’ll have to wait and see how much fallout the final round of cuts has throughout the league.