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LT Orlando Brown, WR Mecole Hardman among those absent Thursday from Chiefs OTAs

Chiefs Cardinals Football
Posted at 1:27 PM, May 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-26 18:16:30-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo.  — Left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. and wide receiver Mecole Hardman Jr. were among those absent Thursday during the Kansas City Chiefs’ organized team activities.

It’s no surprise that Brown, who has yet to sign his franchise-tag tender, skipped the voluntary workouts.

Brown made the Pro Bowl last season, his first with the Chiefs after being acquired via trade with Baltimore last offseason.

General Manager Brett Veach previously indicated that Kansas City has interest in negotiating a long-term extension with Brown, who parted ways with his agent two months ago and has yet to hire new representation.

“He’s still working to get an agent,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. “He’s interviewing these different people, so once he gets that taken care of we'll be able to roll."

Reid said Brown is working out in Florida.

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes said he talks to Brown "at least once a week."

"He's a guy that loves football; there's no doubt about that," Mahomes said. "That off-the-field stuff, that happens in every organization and every team. But I know he wants to be here, he wants to be a Kansas City Chief and he wants to be on that football field more than anybody."

Hardman’s absence was more surprising, given that he’s the top returning veteran among the Chiefs’ remade position group, but Reid said he “tweaked a hamstring” during Wednesday’s workout and was held out Thursday.

After trading Tyreek Hill to Miami, Kansas City added speedster Marquez Valdes-Scantling along with the versatile and tough JuJu Smith-Schuster in free agency before drafting slot wizard Skyy Moore, who remained limited Thursday with a strained hamstring.

Hardman is coming off the best season of his career. He set career-highs with 59 catches for 693 yards.

Four veteran defensive players were notably absent — defensive tackle Chris Jones, defensive end Frank Clark, safety Juan Thornhill and defensive tackle Khalen Saunders.

Other notable players who were absent included backup quarterback Chad Henne.

Wide receiver Daurice Fountain, tight end Mark Vital and linebacker Jermaine Carter also were not spotted during the open portion of training camp.

Right tackle Lucas Niang, who is recovering from knee surgery, wasn’t at OTAs, but that was expected since he probably won’t be available until late August at the earliest.

Three players — cornerback Rashad Fenton, offensive tackle Prince Tega Wanogho and defensive lineman Kehinde Oginni Hassan — were present but did not take part in on-field activities.

Fenton underwent shoulder surgery earlier in the offseason and won’t participate in offseason activities.