Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Kadarius Toney’s Week 1 effort was one to forget about. But Chiefs head coach Andy Reid isn’t laying blame on Toney for how poorly he performed.
“I thought him getting in the game was important, but to be fair I’ve got to kind of look in the mirror on that one,” Reid said of Toney during his September 11 press conference. “I probably didn’t put him in the best position there because he doesn’t drop the ball. That’s just not his deal. He’s a very, very secure catcher …
“I thought it was important that he got in the game, got caught up on the speed, but I probably put him in bad positions there, especially later in the game. He’s still getting his legs back and all that.”
Kadarius Toney Flopped in Season Opener
During the 21-20 loss to the Detroit Lions in the regular season opener, Kadarius Toney played 16 total offensive snaps and with them caught 1-of-5 targets for 1 yard, and had 1 rush attempt for -1 yards. Among the 3 drops he had on the day was a ball that went through his hands and into the hands of Lions rookie safety Brian Branch, who returned the interception for a touchdown early in the third quarter.
Toney’s poor performance couldn’t have come at a worse time, as Kansas City was in desperate need of a playmaker outside of All-Pro tight end Travis Kelce, who was absent from the season opener due to a hyperextended knee.
But Reid is right — Toney’s poor performance wasn’t entirely his fault.
Toney missed the entirety of training camp and preseason due to having surgery on a torn meniscus he suffered on Day 1 of training camp. Toney returned to practice following the preseason, but he wasn’t entirely in football shape yet, which was evident in Week 1.
Though Toney flopped in primetime to kick off the 2023 NFL regular season, the hope within Chiefs Kingdom is that he’ll be in better shape and more productive in Week 2, when the Chiefs travel to face the Jacksonville Jaguars on September 17.
Twitter Reacts to Andy Reid’s Comments
Users on Twitter — which was recently rebranded to “X” — reacted to Andy Reid’s defense of Kadarius Toney following Toney’s poor Week 1 performance.
“So he put a professional football player who’s paid to catch the football in a bad spot when he asked him to catch the football? I love Big Red and that he wants to shoulder it to take it off his player but Toney knows how to catch a football,” one user wrote.
“Especially when considering they had six WRs available who didn’t miss all of training camp,” another user wrote. “Even in general terms, the team didn’t look prepared; sloppy and poor execution at times. Not what one would expect from Andy with so much time to get ready.”
“My guess is they were not gonna play him or barely play him then kelce got hurt and they rushed him back and I bet he wasnt even expecting it or ready. I could tell bro was not expecting to play,” another user wrote.
“Unless he had a hand injury, there is no excuse for why he had the all-time worst performance for a WR,” another user wrote.