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Kansas City, MO (Sports Network) - The Kansas City Chiefs officially released offensive lineman Eric Winston on Thursday.

Winston started 16 games for the Chiefs in 2012, with 15 at right tackle and one contest at right guard. He was scheduled to make a salary of $4.9 million this year.

The Miami-Florida product spent six seasons with the Texans before joining the Chiefs. In 108 career games (103 starts), Winston has blocked for three individual 1,000-yard rushers in his seven seasons in the NFL.

It now seems more likely that Kansas City will use the No. 1 overall pick in this year's draft on Luke Joeckel of Texas A&M. On Monday, the Chiefs placed the franchise tag on offensive tackle Branden Albert.