Brandon Flowers, Justin Houston absent as Chiefs begin workouts

Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid downplayed the absences of cornerback Brandon Flowers and linebacker Justin Houston from the first week of voluntary, full-squad workouts.

That likely won't do much to quell speculation about why they were missing on Thursday.

Flowers gradually lost playing time last season, and his bloated contract could mean that the Chiefs are trying to restructure the deal or trade him.

It could also mean the Chiefs are thinking about cutting him to save valuable salary cap space.

As for Houston, he becomes a free agent after the upcoming season.

The Chiefs have expressed interest in signing him to a long-term deal, but they are cash-strapped at present.

The Chiefs are also negotiating with quarterback Alex Smith, who is entering the final year of his contract.