This time of year, the big buzzword around the NFL is “upgrade”. What fans need to start understanding is that not everyone on the team needs upgrading.
We are coming into a time in Kansas City Chiefs history where the salary cap is going to be more watched than ever before. The Chiefs have never had the highest-paid player in the NFL before Patrick Mahomes. While that is an awesome problem to have, it is still a problem that the front office will have to workaround.
I’ve seen around social media and heard on the radio multiple people talking about all the positions the Chiefs could upgrade. Some of them I wholeheartedly agree and don’t think you’d find a single person who would disagree. A CB for example, as the Chiefs only have two currently under contract: Charvarius Ward and Rashad Fenton. The team has no choice but to add pieces to that position in order to function as an NFL franchise.
But there are other positions that people say could be upgraded that I just see as a waste of valuable cap space. RB is a big one I see people continuously talking about. I’m fine if the Chiefs get a guy in the second or third day of the draft, or even as an undrafted guy. I do not agree with people looking in the free-agent pool, however.
I am not arguing that Damien Williams is an elite RB, he’s not even a great RB. What he is is a good RB who has proven he can get the job done along with backups Darrel Williams and Darwin Thompson. If anyone wants to question their ability to get the job done, I would like to direct you to the parade we had a month ago. The upgrade at that position is not worth the cap space it would take.
Another position I’ve seen a lot of talk about is the backup QB. The Chiefs currently only have Kyle Shurmur under contract as a backup to Mahomes. While I personally would be happy to just leave it at that, I know that is not how Andy Reid usually does things. Andy enjoys having a veteran guy who can be an extra coach and be trusted to not throw a game away.
I’ve seen people mention the Chiefs should go after a guy like Marcus Mariota. He is a failed high draft pick who is looking for a second chance type of guy. This makes no sense to me because that guy is going to cost more than you need to pay. Matt Moore made $1 million in 2019 and went 2-1 for the Chiefs and helped get them a ring. A player like Mariota is going to cost far more than the veteran minimum.
I have no doubt Mariota would be a solid backup and with Andy’s help, he would be successful if he was needed on the field. But why would a team needing to watch the cap want to spend $5 to $10 million more on that? That is not a position an upgrade is worth the cap value. Sign Moore or Henne to another league minimum deal and move forward.
I know people hate hearing about the cap and believe that anything can get done, and to some extent that is true. But these are the same people who say John Dorsey was fired for his cap management, so it clearly is possible to screw it up.
We all grew up with the saying “if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it”. That statement rings very true in the NFL when you are trying to massage the cap. Fix what needs to be fixed, but don’t waste money on positions that don’t need to be fixed.
Disclaimer: ChiefsTake or “Hot Take” articles are not necessarily the opinion of Arrowhead Live and the entirety of it’s staff.