The Chiefs are in the middle of a tough situation surrounding the contract status of star DT, Chris Jones. The Chiefs used their franchise tag on Jones to keep him under franchise control for the 2020 season.
Since being out on the franchise tag, Jones and the Chiefs have not made much progress, if any, on a long-term deal, despite the Chiefs desire to keep him in KC for years to come. It has been reported that Jones is seeking $21 million per year in a new contract.
I’m told there hasn’t been much traction at all toward a new contract between the #chiefs and Chris Jones. They do want him back long term, but COVID’s played a big part with teams not knowing what the cap will be in 2021. Some clarity from the league before July 15th could help— James Palmer (@JamesPalmerTV) June 26, 2020
The worldwide pandemic of COVID-19 appears to also have an impact on the state of negotiations as well. The salary cap for 2021 could take a hit with the financial effects of the pandemic. The Chiefs have made it clear that they want to reach a deal with Jones.
Jones has not been active in any meetings or virtual OTAs and has said he won’t be taking part in anything unless he has a new contract. The deadline for a new deal between Jones and the Chiefs is July 15th. Hopefully, there will be some news and developments on the 2021 salary cap that will aid in pushing forward a new deal.
If no deal is reached, there is a possibility of Jones holding out and not playing in 2020. With this possibility, should the Chiefs look into a backup plan?
There is a lot of talent available on the free agent market for the defensive line. An interesting aspect to look at is the availability of talent across the defensive line.
Jadeveon Clowney is still available and would be a cheaper cost for the Chiefs. I know that he is an EDGE rusher, but he would also answer the question of who is going to play across from Frank Clark. The other aspect that makes him intriguing is the fit in Spags system, as his focus is more on EDGE rushing than interior pressure.
Another option for the Chiefs is foamier Vikings EDGE rusher, Everson Griffen. He would be a good addition for the Chiefs. Griffen is a player that will get you around 6-9 sacks, tons of pressure, and is solid against the run. He also addresses the mirroring position of the Shark. Over his career, he has been durable, playing less than 15 games only twice in 10 seasons.
Now, moving on to a player who play the DT position, Damon Harrison. “Snacks” has been contemplating retirement, but seems to be leaning towards returning as he has received offers. He has been one of the top defensive lineman against the run for years and was a First-Team All-Pro selection in 2016.
Just like the Chiefs front office, I want Chris Jones to be in KC long term, but if everything falls apart and Jones decides to hold out, then the Chiefs will have to find a backup plan to make up for the loss of Jones. Hopefully the July 15 deadline will come and the Chiefs will find a way to lock up Jones.