Respect Motivated Charles in Pursuit of Contract

By Matt Tritten |

Published 07/24 2014 11:23PM

Updated 07/24 2014 11:46PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) There's no confusing just how important Kansas City's franchise running back is to the squad.

"Jamaal Charles is our best player on the team," linebacker Derrick Johnson said.

So the reason behind Charles' brief holdout was simple.

"Since I've been in this league I've been known as an underdog, and I just wanted my respect," Charles said.

The all-pro running back is now gaining his due respect.

Charles' previous contract guaranteed him $3.9 million this season, and lasted through 2015.

So after another Pro Bowl season, Kansas City rewarded him with a two-year extension and a raise of more than $4 million for this season alone.

"I didn't even want to hold out, you know. That's not my personality. I couldn't do it. Now I can move past it and focus on football now."

Charles absence from the dorms at Missouri Western Wednesday put a scare into Chiefs fans, but Andy Reid wasn't too worried, because discussions between both parties began months ago.

"They were communicating," Reid said. "I always say that if they're talking, that's a good thing."

"We've been talking about it. During the season, they talked about it with my agent. They came to them. I mean, they came to them, so they knew at sometime that I knew I wasn't going to play for what I was making next year," Charles said.

Coming off a season when he accumulated nearly 2,000 yards from scrimmage, Charles is now getting paid like an elite back, with only Adrian Peterson in the position group making more.

And Kansas City plans on getting its money's worth.

"We put a lot of pressure on him to do well in the games, to help us win," Johnson said. "He's our horse on this team."

"I think he's got a lot in the tank. We're going to keep using him," Reid said. "He's a good football player. He enjoys playing the game, so we'll keep getting him the football."

Copyright 2016 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.