Chiefs offensive line will look different in 2021, but this is the year to rebuild it
I have been getting crushed on the internet today because of my take on Patrick Mahomes. I asked the question, would Mahomes be willing to take a pay cut to help his teammates out like Tom Brady has constantly throughout his career.
Chiefs fans immediately came to his defense, and thought I was trying to attack Mahomes. I wasn’t. I was asking a simple question, because the reason Brady has been so successful is he takes team friendly deals that ultimately pay him the same amount of money, to help re-sign the core players. Quarterbacks deserve to be paid, I am not arguing that. What I am trying to say is are they willing to take a pay cut to keep a player around they feel is a core player.
The Chiefs are losing Mitchell Schwartz and Eric Fisher. Both are aging, and both are solid veterans, but this move was a shock to many. Fisher was penciled in as the starter, and when you look at their roster you have to ask yourself was this the right move?
The Chiefs are currently four million dollars over the cap, but they will be under very soon. I think the average fan will look at this move by the Chiefs and think back to the Super Bowl. They will see Patrick Mahomes running for his life in the Super Bowl, and not getting any help. Well now they are getting rid of two of their starters at tackle and their center Austin Reiter is going to test free agency.
The Chiefs currently have five offensive lineman on their roster for 2021. They have Yasir Durant, Nick Allegretti, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, Lucas Niang and Martinas Rankins.
When you look at this list, you have to panic or at least think the Chiefs will struggle, but that is not the case. The Chiefs are very high on Lucas Niang who they drafted in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft.
If Laurent DuVernay-Tardif returns that would be a huge addition. He left last year to practice in the medical field during the pandemic. The team is expected to re-sign Mike Remmers which will be a solid addition.
The Chiefs are in a great predicament. They do not need to have too much cap, they have something that every free agent wants. Players want to play for a winner. They are not really concerned about the money. When you look at this market, every team is struggling. You will have very few players landing huge deals during the pandemic and weakened salary cap year. The pandemic dropped the salary cap 15.7 million dollars in 2021.
With that being said, players who are looking to make a run at the ring could be willing to come to the Chiefs on the cheap to win now. The Chiefs are stacked, and if they can add some savvy veterans on one year deals it allows them to draft players and groom them into starters, the same way they did with Niang.
The Chiefs hold the 31st pick in the NFL Draft. The Chiefs added two extra compensatory picks this year, one in the fourth and one in the fifth. This will come in handy trying to fill the positions on the offensive line.The news pushes Kansas City’s total number of selections over the course of draft weekend to eight, as the Chiefs have a pick in each of the first three rounds, two fourth round picks, two fifth round picks and a sixth-round pick.
If the Chiefs could add a player like Alex Leatherwood in the first which many mocks have him falling to round two they would be getting a future Pro Bowl tackle. This move would allow the Chiefs to get younger at the tackle position. Niang and Leatherwood would be great to see. If the Chiefs can add a veteran guard like Richie Incognito to a one year deal it would be a huge addition. Incognito would love a chance to win a Super bowl and he brings a level of nasty to the Chiefs offensive line.
Then in the second round if the Chiefs can draft Landon Dickerson they could have one of the best offensive lines in the NFL Draft for years to come. Imagine the line being Alex Leatherwood, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, Landon Dickerson, Richie Incognito and Lucas Niang to protect for Mahomes.
I would be willing to bet the Chiefs offensive line would be ten times better, and they would be a lot younger. This is a cost savings move that could save the Chiefs tons of money in the future and lock solid rookies for years to come.