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Necessary Roughness

Necessary Roughness: Would Andy Reid retire after a second ring?

Necessary Roughness is a new Arrowhead Live column that explores hot takes and what-if scenarios with the Kansas City Chiefs. This series will look at various opinions, even the unpopular ones, and test their validity. The intent is not to ruffle the feathers of Chiefs Kingdom, but to get fans to think about every possibility out there.

The Chiefs have been flying high after their first Super Bowl victory in 50 years. They have the best QB in the game, some of the fastest weapons on offense, a much-improved defense, and one the greatest coaches of all-time in Andy Reid. According to ESPN’s Football Power Index (FPI), the Chiefs are the favorites to win the Super Bowl in 2020. It certainly looks like the Chiefs have set up the 2020 season to make another run at a Super Bowl with 20 of 22 starters returning to the team. But what about after that? What if the Chiefs win in 2020? Would Andy Reid walk away?

If the Chiefs did win Super Bowl LV, it would be Andy Reid’s second Super Bowl win as a head coach. Not many NFL head coaches are able to accomplish one, let alone two. He already has 222 wins, which he will likely add to that number in 2020. The only active coach ahead of him in wins is Bill Belichick with 304. It is unlikely that Reid will ever catch the Patriots coach. So, what else would he have to play for? A dynasty run? That itself will be difficult based on the number of players that are entering the final year of their contracts. Here is a list of notable players who are entering the final year of their deals.

Laurent Duvernay-TardifG5 yr $42,363,000
Tanoh KpassagnonDE4 yr $4,321,222
Daniel SorensenSS4 yr $16,000,000
Ben NiemannLB3 yr $1,716,000
Charvarius WardCB3 yr $1,710,000
Damien WilsonOLB2 yr $5,750,000
Damien WilliamsRB2 yr $5,100,000
Austin ReiterC2 yr $4,500,000
Andrew WylieT2 yr $1,050,000
Sammy WatkinsWR1 yr $9,000,000
Taco CharltonDE1 yr $825,000
Bashaud BreelandCB1 yr $3,000,000
Chris Jones*DT1 yr $16,126,000
Anthony ShermanFB1 yr $1,187,500
Mike RemmersRT1 yr $1,187,500
Mike PennelDT1 yr $1,047,500
Indicates new addition to the roster
*Indicates franchise tag

With the exception to Remmers and Charlton, the rest of these players played major roles during the Chiefs Super Bowl season. They won’t all be able to re-sign, especially after they pay Patrick Mahomes. Chiefs owner Clark Hunt wants to start working on Mahomes’ contract this summer. It has been projected that the deal could be the first contract to surpass $200 million. This wouldn’t just affect the contracts of players with only one year left, but possibly players that are due to get paid in 2022. Here is a list of players whose contracts are up in two years.

Derrick NnadiDT4 yr $3,745,600
Eric FisherLT4 yr $48,000,000
Mitchell SchwartzRT3 yr $24,455,000
Travis KelceTE5 yr $46,842,000
Tyrann MathieuFS3 yr $42,000,000

Both tackles, the star TE, and the cornerstone of the secondary are all on that list. They probably won’t all leave the team, but it is unlikely that they will all return, and the Chiefs will have to build young talent through the draft to replace them.

It is common to see NFL teams take a dip in the standings after breaking the bank for their franchise QB. Look at the Atlanta Falcons. They haven’t even reached .500 since paying Matt Ryan. Does Andy Reid want to rebuild a team at his age, after already reaching the top twice (assuming he wins in 2020)? Reid is 62 years old. Most people at that age are looking to retire, spend more time with family, and remove themselves from the everyday stress of working. However, that might not be how Andy Reid is wired. He has been coaching in some capacity since 1982, starting as a graduate assistant at BYU. He has been coaching in the NFL since 1992 and a head coach since 1999. What would he do if he gave all that up?

But I’ve seen it happen with professional athletes. John Elway walked away from football after back-to-back championships. After a long successful career combined with heartbreaking losses, Elway finally won two rings and then retired from the Broncos. It wouldn’t be too far-fetched to see big red do the same.

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