Dylan Wilhelm subs in for this week’s Necessary Roughness and takes a crack at answering the Kingdom’s biggest question: Will Chris Jones be a Chief in 2021??
While we all know the Chiefs and Chris Jones haven’t really been close to a deal, the threat of a holdout became clear Tuesday night when Jones said on Twitter that he wouldn’t play in 2020 without a new deal.
Le’Veon Bell sat out the entire 2018 season, and signed a four-year, $52.5 million dollar with the Jets last offseason.
It is important to note that there are some differences in the two situations. Bell played the 2017 season on the tag and decided not to play for it again. This is the first time Jones has been assigned the tag. Jones also plays DT, and pass-rusher is a much more coveted position than RB.
Many fans often disagree with the players in these cases, saying they are being too greedy and are still getting a full guaranteed salary ($16.1 million in this case), but Jones can actually make a pretty strong case.
Since entering the league in 2016, Jones has tallied 33 sacks and has taken over multiple games. His demands for $20+ million a year are reasonable given that he is the best defensive tackle in the league not named Aaron Donald.
Jones has handled his business the right way over the last 18 or so months and has seen other players get their pay-days, such as Frank Clark and Tyrann Mathieu.
While Jones certainly deserves his money, the Chiefs just might aren’t able to give it to him without losing other contributors on the roster. In addition, as we have said many times before, the status of the salary cap is unknown, and Patrick Mahomes mega-extension awaits.
That being said, the most realistic scenario seems to be Jones being tagged again after the 2020 season and traded before the 2021 NFL Draft for compensation.
For possible trade scenarios, check out Justin’s article from Wednesday.
As much as it pains me to say it, the Chiefs might need to start looking for options to fill some of the gap that Chris Jones will leave in 2021. This is a scenario where all parties involved are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.
Anything can happen over the next two weeks, but a long-term deal between the Chiefs and Jones is looking less and less likely barring one side or the other caving to demands.