Wide receiver Bobby Wade spoke to the media in Kansas City today after signing a one-year contract with the Chiefs and admitted he didn't see it coming when the Vikings released him last week.
"It was very surprising, caught me off guard," he said. "Other than that, it's the nature of the business. Nobody is safe. Everybody understands that regardless of pay or how many years you've played or even production for that matter. . . I'm just fortunate to have this opportunity.''
Wade, who led Minnesota in receptions the past two seasons but was sure to see less playing time with the arrival of slot receiver Percy harvin, did not express any bitterness toward the Vikings. The interesting thing about the move wasn't that Wade was let go as much as it was he was let go a week after agreeing to have his 2009 salary cut from about $3 million to $1.5 million. He stands to make just over the veteran's minimum of $745,000 with the Chiefs this season.
Asked how fast he can be ready to play with Kansas City, Wade said: "It'll be determined on my learning curve. I'll put in as much time as possible to try to learn and get on the field as early as possible. Other than that, it's just about making plays once I get out there. I'm just going to continue to work and we'll see where it falls on Sunday.''
Wade did make it clear that reports of a division in the Vikings' locker room over Brett Favre's presence simply weren't true. "It wasn't the way it was written up," he said. "There was no division in the locker room. I didn't experience any of that."
Wade had a few options after he was released. Reportedly the Indianapolis Colts expressed interest in him. Instead, he elected to join the Chiefs, who went 2-14 last season.
"I want to be part of a program that's about growing," Wade said. "I want to be part of a program that's excelling, that's not moving backward but moving forward. I wanted to play with a quarterback that's going to be here for awhile. Matt Cassel is a proven quarterback in this league and this is his opportunity to really shine.''
It didn't hurt that the Chiefs are now coached by Todd Haley, who was Wade's position coach in 2003 when the wide receiver joined the Chicago Bears as a rookie.
"I'm very grateful for what I learned my rookie year," Wade said. "It carried me a long way the past six years. He kind of showed me the ropes. He was hard on you but high on you, really excited about your opportunities but willing to push you to get there. That's what I'm looking forward to in this opportunity. You can get a little relaxed in this league but if you continue to push yourself or have somebody pushing you, you can continue to get better.''
Wade also feels he will have the opportunity to catch some passes in Kansas City. "There are a lot of opportunities in that position, especially in this offense," he said. "It's not run, run, run, run, run. This is an opportunity to have a balanced attack.''
Vikings injury report: LB Erin Henderson (calf), did not participate; LB Heath Farwell (hamstring), limited in today's practice; G Anthony Herrera (back), limited; TE Jim Kleinsasser (hand), full participation.
What it means: Wide receiver Bernard Berrian was not limited in a practice for the first time in several weeks. Berrian played last Sunday against Cleveland but appeared to be slowed by a hamstring injury suffered in the first preseason game.
Detroit injury report: DE Cliff Avril (hamstring), did not participate; QB Drew Stanton (knee), DNP; DT Andre Fluellen (knee), limited; DT Grady Jackson (knee), limited; CB William James (foot), limited; CB Eric King (shoulder), limited; K Jason Hanson (knee), full participation.