Chiefs’ Andy Reid Reacts to NFL Placing Justyn Ross on Exempt List

Andy Reid, Justyn Ross exempt list

Getty Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid commented on Justyn Ross being placed on the Commissioner's Exempt List by the NFL.

Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid took the podium about an hour after the NFL announced that they would be placing wide receiver Justyn Ross on the Commissioner’s Exempt List ahead of Week 8.

“You guys know about Justyn Ross being put on the Commissioner’s Exempt List,” Reid said on October 27, addressing the situation head-on. “We’ll just let it play out the way it goes. That’s what that list is for.”

The Chiefs HC added that the franchise will take this patient approach “until all the information is gathered” on Ross’ arrest.

After a follow-up question, Reid also explained that the NFL did consult KC general manager Brett Veach and Vice President of Football Operations Chris Shea before making their decision.

“So, they had conversation there but it’s really [made] together,” he told the media regarding the league’s ruling. “It’s not to prosecute, it’s to gather information. That [list] buys time for everybody to do that.”

“You let that play out,” Reid continued later. “That’s what you do. That’s why [the list is] there and, you know, why the league has it.”

Finally, Big Red noted that he’s not going to “judge” anything for himself until the process has played out. “He has worked hard to get himself back,” Reid concluded on Ross, admitting that he doesn’t know when the second-year wideout will be able to return.

Chiefs WR Justin Watson Will Play vs. Broncos, Richie James ‘Close’ to Returning From IR

With Ross now unable to practice or play in games, the Chiefs need even more help at wide receiver. Fortunately, reinforcements appear to be on the way.

Along with the trade for Mecole Hardman last week, Kansas City will be getting veteran WR Justin Watson back in Week 8 according to Reid.

Watson injured his elbow during the initial 2023 matchup with the Denver Broncos. Ironically, he’ll return for the rematch after missing one week. Watson will wear a brace during the game but should have no limitations otherwise.

The more unexpected news from the Chiefs head honcho on Friday was about fellow injured WR Richie James.

“He’s close,” Reid stated about James taking the practice field again. “We haven’t done anything there yet but he’s close, yep.”

James was placed on the injured reserve on September 23 with an MCL issue. He’s already missed the minimum four games that are required for any IR stint. In fact, Week 7 was the veteran’s fifth outing on the sidelines.

Based on Reid’s comments, Week 8 will likely be the sixth, but James could potentially make his return for Week 9 in Germany against the Miami Dolphins if all goes well.

In other news, running back Jerick McKinnon (groin) and kicker Harrison Butker (illness) both logged full practices on Friday, October 27, after missing practice on Thursday. They are each expected to play on Sunday.

Known Details of Justyn Ross Arrest

Ross was first arrested and named by the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office’s “Booking and Release Report” on Monday, October 23, in Shawnee, Kansas.

On October 24, an updated court disposition detailed two misdemeanor charges — lowered from an initial felony criminal damage charge listed on the booking report on October 23. The updated charges were domestic battery with no priors and criminal damage of less than $1,000.

The Kansas City Star provided details regarding the incident between Ross and an unnamed female who “is or has been in a dating relationship” with the wide receiver.

“On radio traffic captured on, a police dispatcher stated that the alleged victim told police that Ross was ‘dragging her through the house and has torn up the house,’” the KC Star’s Jesse Newell and Sam McDowell reported.

Continuing: “The alleged victim suffered minor injuries, according to a Shawnee Police Department offense report. No specific injuries were included.”

The KC Star also noted that “the property damage is to a laptop, iPhone, computer monitor, gold bracelet and car key,” as stated by “the offense report.”

An October 24 update from Fox 4 KC’s Harold R. Kuntz informed: “Chiefs WR Justyn Ross pleads not Guilty. He’s scheduled to be released and set Bond of $2,500. He appeared via Zoom today and ordered to appear at next Court Hearing December 4th.”

Ross briefly practiced with the team this week before being placed on the exempt list.

If nothing changes from now until his next hearing, Ross could miss a large chunk of the remainder of the 2023 season — if not all of it.