The Kansas City Chiefs stunned the football world with a season-opening 42-27 victory in New England, but an injury to safety Eric Berry gave the win a bittersweet feel.
Chiefs coach Andy Reid told reporters Berry potentially suffered a torn Achilles tendon and the team would know about the injury Friday after a scheduled MRI.
"I don't think it's positive," Reid said, already pivoting to talking about how Berry can assist the team by helping him coach this season.
Berry was carted off the field midway through the fourth quarter and didn't return. Berry immediately took off his gloves after the injury, a telling sign for a player whose leadership and toughness helped to define his organization. Anyone who has spent time around this Chiefs defense understands Berry is its heart and soul. Reid revealed that Berry helped "break down" the team in the locker room after the game in an attempt to not let his injury cast a pall over the victory. Daniel Sorensen and second-year pro Daniel Murray picked up extra snaps in his place.
"It's tough to lose a guy like that. You can't replace a guy like that," Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston told NBC's Michele Tafoya after the game.
Berry missed the entire preseason with a heel injury, but had played all 69 possible snaps Thursday at the time of his injury. Berry showed his incredible value to the team with a huge fourth-down run stop to end a Patriots drive and did a fantastic job trailing Rob Gronkowski in coverage all night, holding him to 33 yards. That sort of play is what earned him a six-year, $78 million contract in February.
Diagnosed with lymphoma during the 2014 season, Berry returned to action the last two seasons and earned first-team All-Pro nods in both years. Impossible to replace, Berry has proven he's a survivor who doesn't stay down for long.