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Chiefs FS Juan Thornhill out for season with torn ACL

Kansas City’s secondary has improved a ton since last year, but Juan Thornhill’s injury could seriously affect its postseason performance.

Kansas City Chiefs free safety Juan Thornhill reacts during the second half against the Green Bay Packers at Arrowhead Stadium. Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs defense has taken a major blow, as free safety Juan Thornhill has been ruled out for the season. The rookie suffered a knee injury during his team’s Week 17 victory against the Los Angeles Chargers. Chiefs coach Andy Reid confirmed Monday that an MRI revealed Thornhill had torn his left ACL, according to beat writer Nate Taylor.

Thornhill has started alongside strong safety Tyrann Mathieu since Week 1, tallying 58 tackles and three interceptions in 16 appearances. His absence could have a significant effect on a Kansas City secondary that has improved considerably from last year. It had a top-10 pass defense in 2019 after giving up the second-most passing yards in the NFL last season. Kansas City is focused on keeping up the good work without Thornhill.

“It hurts, it hurts, you don’t want to see a guy that you started with at the beginning of the season go down like that,” Chiefs defensive end Frank Clark said of Thornhill Sunday. “We just got to hold it down.”

Kansas City will face whomever comes out on top between Houston, Buffalo, and New England in the Divisional round on January 11th.