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Chiefs rookie RB Kareem Hunt 'ready for the challenge'

With Spencer Ware facing season-ending knee surgery, the Chiefs are putting their ground game in the hands of a rookie.

Kareem Hunt, Kansas City's third-round pick, says he's prepared for the role.

"It means everything," Hunt told the team's official website. "It means that [coach Andy Reid] trusts and believes in me. I'm very excited to be taking on such a big role, and I'm ready for the challenge."

Hunt has looked the part in August, running for 79 yards off 18 carries and catching four passes out of the backfield for another 31 yards in his first NFL preseason. Showing well as a blocker on passing downs, too, Hunt was zooming toward first-team carries even before Ware went down.

"I think we're going to be OK there," Reid said Sunday of Kansas City's running back room. "Now, listen, are you going to replace [Ware]? No, he's a good football player, but the young kid [Hunt] will step in and he'll do a nice job for us, and Charcandrick [West] has got reps under his belt, and C.J. [Spiller] has reps under his belt, so we're OK."

Said Reid: "I don't want to take anything away from [Ware] and how important he was to our team, but that's a position where we have a little strength, so we should be OK."

Barring another major injury to the group, Reid is correct. Hunt has looked like a starter from the minute he hit the field. He'll serve as a core part of this Chiefs attack from Week 1 onward.

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