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Chiefs expected to play without Justin Houston

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Kansas City Chiefs

KANSAS CITY, MO - NOVEMBER 20: Outside linebacker Justin Houston #50 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks in to the backfield as he lines up against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Arrowhead Stadium during the game on November 20, 2016 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

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When linebacker Justin Houston missed practice because of swelling in his knee on Wednesday, coach Andy Reid said he wasn’t concerned about Houston’s ability to play against the Broncos on Sunday night.

Houston went on to miss practice on both Thursday and Friday, however, and the team listed him as questionable to play against Denver. It appears that has caused the level of concern in Kansas City to go up because Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that Houston is not expected to play.

Houston missed the first nine games of the season while rehabbing from offseason surgery on his ACL and has returned with four sacks in five games for the Chiefs. This bout of late-season trouble with the knee is sure to elicit memories of last season when Houston was sidelined down the stretch in the regular season before returning for ineffective performances in the team’s two postseason games.

If the Ravens lose to the Steelers on Sunday afternoon, Kansas City will be in the playoffs regardless of Sunday night’s result. If Baltimore wins and they lose, their postseason fate won’t be decided until Week 17.