When the run-oriented Kansas City Chiefs acquired Joe Montana, the idea was to junk the power game for a more diversified offense.
That, and a knee injury, helped lead to the departure of Christian Okoye, the team's career rushing leader. He was placed on injured reserve Tuesday.The 260-pound Nigerian may have played his last game for the Chiefs, who not only have Montana but are going to a San Francisco-type offense based on short passes and slashing runs rather than the bull-like rushes of Okoye.
"This offense is geared to a different style," coach Marty Schottenheimer said. "We're headed in a different direction and we have to be concerned with the guys who are with us right now."
Okoye started only five games last season, when he had a career-low 448 yards, which brought him to a career total of 4,897.
In other NFL news Tuesday, Keith McCants became remembered by Tampa Bay fans as another in a growing list of first-round flops.
Bucs coach Sam Wyche didn't say the team's top 1990 pick was being waived for poor play. Wyche said the linebacker was cut because of the team's changing defensive philosophy.
At 6-foot-3 and 265 pounds, McCants simply lacks the quickness to cover the pass.
Many thought McCants, who starred at Alabama, would be the first player selected in 1990. But he slipped to No. 4 amid reports he had a suspect knee.
Drew Bledsoe, No. 1 pick in the NFL draft, appears on the verge of becoming the No. 1 quarterback of the New England Patriots. But coach Bill Parcells retracted a previous statement that the starter in final preseason game - Friday night against Kansas City - would open the season Sept. 5 at Buffalo.
Bledsoe has completed 28 of 52 passes for 323 yards and three touchdowns in three exhibitions. The Washington State rookie played the entire game Friday against Green Bay, completing 19 of 29 for 245 yards and two touchdowns in a 21-17 victory.
Los Angeles waived former Weber State quarterback Jamie Martin.
Running back Vaughn Dunbar, New Orleans' top choice in 1992, was placed on injured reserve with knee injury. Among those waived was veteran running back Gil Fenerty.
Eleven-year veteran Keith Willis and five-year man Chris Hale were among 18 players waived. The Bills also put wide receiver Al Edwards, who injured a shoulder in the preseason opener, on injured reserve.
Guard Tom Thayer, one of Chicago's few holdovers from its 1986 Super Bowl championship team, will miss the first six weeks of the season with an ailing back. He was placed on the injured reserve after missing all of the preseason.
Wide receiver Hassan Jones, a starter with Minnesota for five years, was released. Jones signed with the Browns as a free agent, retired early during training camp, then came back a few days later.
Veteran kicker Matt Bahr has staved off another challenge. Todd Peterson, a seventh-round draft choice, was cut by New York.
Rookie punter Craig Hentrich was released after losing his battle to oust Louie Aguiar. New York also said second-round draft pick Coleman Rudolph will miss eight weeks with a sprained ligament.
The Raiders traded former Olympic sprinter Sam Graddy to the Rams and tight end David Jones to Cleveland, for conditional draft choices.
Graddy had been with the Raiders for five seasons as a wide receiver and kick returner. Cut was Anthony Bell a one-time No. 1 pick of the Cardinals who was the starting middle linebacker last year.
Safety Delton Hall was cut because he failed his physical due to an Achilles' tendon injury. Third-string quarterback Pat O'Hara and safety Anthony Shelton also were among 15 players waived.