KC Chiefs kicker Butker officially ruled out against Chargers. Here’s what that means

The Chiefs officially need a Plan B at kicker for Thursday night’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.

Harrison Butker, who is dealing with a left-ankle sprain, has been ruled out for Week 2 action.

Butker, who suffered the injury in the Chiefs’ season opener against the Arizona Cardinals, did not practice Tuesday or Wednesday, a sign that he was not trending in the right direction.

The Chiefs on Tuesday signed Matt Ammendola to their practice squad, and he is a prime candidate to be elevated to the active roster before the game. Amendola previously spent time with the Carolina Panthers, New York Jets and Houston Texans and has converted 13 of 19 field-goal attempts in his career.

This isn’t the first time the Andy Reid-led Chiefs have had to make alternate plans during a game week at the kicker position. In Week 16 of the 2021 season, the Chiefs relied on Elliott Fry to handle kicks against the Pittsburgh Steelers after Butker landed on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

“We went through this last year and it worked out pretty good on relatively short notice,” Chiefs coach Reid said Tuesday. “I think we’ll be OK.”

Aside from Ammendola, the other in-house option for kicking duties is safety Justin Reid, who kicked an extra point Sunday after Butker briefly left the game. The safety, who appears on the injury report with a hand injury but isn’t assigned a game designation, also assumed responsibility for kickoffs at Arizona.

Starting right guard Trey Smith (ankle) is the only other player on the Chiefs’ roster to carry a game designation into Thursday night’s game. Smith, who put in a limited practice Tuesday, was a full participant Wednesday. The Chiefs listed him as questionable.

If Smith can’t play against the Chargers, the team is expected to rely on Nick Allegretti at right guard.

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes (left wrist), left tackle Orlando Brown (knee), linebacker Willie Gay Jr. (knee), wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (shoulder), wide receiver Justin Watson (chest) practiced fully Wednesday. None carries a game designation, so each should be available for a full workload Thursday.