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Kansas City Chiefs 2010 Season Preview: Running Back Edition

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At the end of the 2009 season, many figured that running back wouldn't be a position with much competition in 2010 for the Kansas City Chiefs. After all, Jamaal Charles had just ended half-a-season as the starter. A half-season that rivaled only Chris Johnson.

Things have changed quickly. Thomas Jones was brought into the fold and he's started out training camp as the no. 1 back.

Maybe Jones is really the best back or maybe Todd Haley is using this as a motivational tool for Charles but he's yet to earn his starting spot.

Wtihout further ado, here's your preview for the Chiefs running backs.

Jamaal Charles

He's had an interesting start to camp as the No. 2 back. I wouldn't worry No.1 vs. No. 2 so much.

The Chiefs' running back situation in 2010 will be a split between Jones and Charles. My best guess is somewhere in the 60/40 range. At one point, I figured Charles would get the most carries, but the way the Chiefs have started camp, it's Jones who might get the edge.

Charles is coming off of a shoulder surgery in January so training camp is the first practice he's seen in seven months. He didn't participate in any of the offseason activities.

The Chiefs would be wise to limit Charles' carries somewhat. They need him for the long-haul and wearing him out three years into the league wouldn't do any good.

Thomas Jones

The Chiefs didn't have much of a short-yardage presence in 2009 and that caused problems at times.

Enter Thomas Jones.

Jones is a big back who was brought in as much for his skills as his leadership capabilities. He's a workout warrior and has had a positive effect on Charles, who described Jones "like a big brother" this week at training camp.

Jones has had over 1,000 yards in five straight seasons, so the big question here is if his body can hold up. Sure, he's in great shape, but he's several years past age 30, commonly called the death of running backs.

Splitting carries with Charles should help preserve him in 2010.

Kestahn Moore

Here's a guy I didn't think we'd be talking about. Moore is far from guaranteed a spot on the 2010 roster, but I like what I've seen in training camp so far.

He's shown some speed for a guy his size (214 pounds).

The Chiefs' third string running back likely won't see much action, but this is a time to set themselves up for 2011 and beyond when Thomas Jones may not be around.

Javarris Williams

Like Moore, Williams has had a solid camp so far.

He was a 2010 seventh round pick that barely saw any time in 2009.

He had good production in college so he's demonstrated on that level he's capable. He's a similar back to Moore so those two may be competing for the same position.

Jackie Battle

He's unique because of his size at 6-foot-2 and 238 pounds, making him the biggest back in Chiefs training camp.

Battle is surprisingly athletic for a guy his size. I saw him make a cut back to the inside on a sweep last weekend at training camp.

He knows the playbook having been in this system so that probably gives him an advantage right there.

Because of special teams and his unique size, I think Battle has a spot on the team.

***

(Note: Mike Cox, Tim Castille and Tervaris Johnson will be covered under fullbacks)

There's no doubt it's going to be Charles and Jones leading the way. The only question is how they'll split up their carries.

The rest of the guys are trying to prove themselves on special teams and fight their way into some playing time after Jones leaves.