Chiefs star running back Jamaal Charles won't be showing up Wednesday for training camp in St. Joseph until Kansas City ponies up more money, KCTV5 has learned exclusively.
Charles is the Chiefs top offensive star, but 10 other NFL running backs have a higher base salary.
He wants more money and is prepared to hold out as long as it takes, a source tells KCTV5. Charles is nearing the end of a six-year, nearly $28 million contract.
He makes about $9 million per season less than Minnesota's Adrian Peterson who has a seven-year, $96 million deal. Detroit's Reggie Bush and Baltimore's Ray Rice also make more than Charles.
The Chiefs won nine of their first 12 games and made the playoffs. Charles touched the ball 85 percent of the offensive snap.
Charles signed his current deal in 2010. His base salary is this year is $2.65 million. The contract expires after the 2015 season.
ESPN reports that the Chiefs have discussed a new contract with Charles.
The Chiefs said they expect Charles to show up on Wednesday when veterans report. The first practice is Thursday.
The Chiefs are also facing contract issues with quarterback Alex Smith and linebacker Justin Houston.
When news first broke about Charles holding out for more money, Chiefs fans voiced their opinions on Facebook and Twitter.
"They want to be paid. Their careers are short, but at the same time, they signed the contract. And so they knew what the deal was, and now they're trying to decide whether to hold out. I can understand it from their point of view, but I can also understand the business side of it, that you signed a contract, you need to play," Dan Schmer said.
Other fans, like Cherie Long, agree, but only up to a point.
"You should honor the contract you signed, but he is worth the extra money. We love him. We do. He's the best. He's the one that helped us get where we were, last year, so I think he deserves it," she said.
And, on the other side is Duncan Kaminski, who says Charles standing, as one of the best running backs in the league, dictates the Chiefs take action now.
"I don't want to see him hold out. I'm a diehard Chiefs fan, and I think they have a lot of special pieces in place this season, and he is obviously the linchpin of it all, but I can't blame the guy," Kaminski said.
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KCTV5's Chris Oberholtz and Jonathan Carter contributed to this report.
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