Chiefs’ trade on cutdown day another sign they could start the season without Chris Jones


Share post:

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs knew their strengths and weaknesses entering Tuesday, the NFL’s cutdown day when rosters must be trimmed to 53 players.

Of course, the Chiefs made a few decisions that might have surprised their fans. Quarterback Shane Buechele, running back La’Mical Perine, tight end Matt Bushman, defensive end Joshua Kaindoh and guard Darian Kinnard didn’t make the initial roster. The same goes for a pair of veterans in defensive tackle Danny Shelton and safety Deon Bush.

The Chiefs, though, were in the market to make some trades. Early Tuesday, the Chiefs made their first move, trading receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette, who had an excellent preseason, to the Carolina Panthers for a 2024 conditional seventh-round pick. The Chiefs had a surplus at receiver, carrying seven on their initial roster even without Smith-Marsette.

The position with a shortage was clear as well. The Chiefs need defensive line help so badly that general manager Brett Veach and Andy Reid made a trade with the archrival Las Vegas Raiders on Tuesday. A few hours after the Smith-Marsette deal, they acquired second-year defensive tackle Neil Farrell for a 2024 sixth-round pick.

As a rookie last year, Farrell, a fourth-round pick, played just 158 snaps in nine games for the Raiders. Once he learns coordinator Steve Spagnuolo’s defense, Farrell is expected to play a lot more snaps this season for the Chiefs. One reason is the Chiefs could have plenty of opportunities for him.

As expected, the Chiefs placed All-Pro defensive tackle Chris Jones on the did-not-report list, which opened a roster spot. By not reporting to training camp on time on July 21, Jones, who is holding out for a lucrative contract extension, has already accrued fines totaling $2 million for the 40 days he has missed. If Jones’ absence continues, he will continue to face a mandatory $50,000 fine each day, based on the new collective bargaining agreement, until Sunday.

Jones is seeking a new deal that will make him at least the second-highest-paid player at his position, according to a league source. Since the Chiefs ended their month-long training camp in St. Joseph, Mo., the negotiations between the parties have not progressed toward a deal, the source said.

“There’s been no communication,” Reid said last week. “But whatever happens, happens. If he’s not there, the game goes on, right? That’s how it works.”

If Jones doesn’t report to the Chiefs by Sunday, the first practice before their opening-night game against the Detroit Lions on Sept. 7, his availability for the game would be in serious jeopardy.

Without Jones, the Chiefs will rely heavily on Tershawn Wharton, a four-year veteran who is expected to play in his first game since rehabbing from surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee. The next players on the depth chart are rookie Keondre Coburn, Matt Dickerson and Farrell.

Last week, Jones used his X account, formerly Twitter, to express that his holdout could last until Week 8. That’s the latest he can report to the team and still earn an accrued season to fulfill the last year in his contract, making him an unrestricted free agent next spring if he and the Chiefs cannot agree to a new deal.

The Chiefs are optimistic that Farrell, who at age 24 and still has two years left on his rookie contract, can develop into a reliable contributor under Spagnuolo and defensive line coach Joe Cullen. Before acquiring Farrell, the Chiefs had only one defensive tackle whose contract doesn’t end after the 2023 season: Coburn.

If Farrell has a successful first week with the Chiefs, he could be available for the team’s Week 2 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Farrell showed potential to create interior penetration with the Raiders, recording 12 tackles and two quarterback hits.

“God don’t make mistakes, forever blessed and highly favored,” Farrell wrote on his X account.


Why Chiefs coach Andy Reid runs the NFL’s hardest training camp

Ross makes the cut

Wide receiver Justyn Ross, who missed all of last season after foot surgery, was one of the young players who made the Chiefs’ initial roster.

Ross projects to be the seventh receiver on the roster, a first since Reid became the team’s coach in 2013. In the preseason, Ross produced six receptions on 15 targets for 59 yards, including two touchdowns.

“It’ll mean everything to me (to make the team), just because of everything I’ve been through,” Ross said Saturday after the team’s preseason finale. “It’ll be a great accomplishment for me.”

In 2018 as a freshman, Ross led Clemson with 1,000 receiving yards, including nine touchdowns, on just 46 receptions, despite never starting a game. Clemson won the national championship over Alabama with Ross catching six passes for 153 yards and a touchdown in the title game.

But the main reason Ross wasn’t selected in the NFL Draft last year was because of his medical history. Ross learned in the spring of 2020 that he had a previously undetected congenital fusion in his spine, which threatened to end his career. He had surgery to repair a bulging disk, went through an extensive rehab and had to wait a year and a half to return to the field. As a junior in 2021, Ross became Clemson’s primary slot receiver, a move that created favorable matchups. Ross played 51.7 percent of his snaps in the slot, according to Pro Football Focus. He led the team with 46 receptions, generating 514 yards and three touchdowns.

Even after signing with the Chiefs, Ross didn’t make it to training camp as a rookie. Instead, foot surgery ended his season before it began.

This year, though, Ross performed well in camp and earned an increased number of repetitions with the first-team offense, as he built a deep-ball connection with quarterback Patrick Mahomes.

“Obviously, everybody knows the fast start he had in college and then he got sidetracked by some injuries,” general manager Brett Veach said Saturday. “Last year, our training staff did a great job with him, bringing him back and giving him the time he needed. I think halfway through the OTAs, you really started to see it click and he started to get that confidence, that self-belief back. It’s continued on through training camp, so we’re certainly expecting big things from Justin this year.”

The Chiefs’ initial 53-man roster

Quarterback (2): Patrick Mahomes, Blaine Gabbert

Running back (3): Isiah Pacheco, Jerick McKinnon, Clyde Edwards-Helaire

Wide receiver (7): Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Skyy Moore, Kadarius Toney, Justin Watson, Richie James, Rashee Rice, Justyn Ross

Tight end (3): Travis Kelce, Noah Gray, Blake Bell

Offensive line (10): Donovan Smith, Joe Thuney, Creed Humphrey, Trey Smith, Jawaan Taylor, Nick Allegretti, Prince Tega Wanogho, Lucas Niang, Mike Caliendo, Wanya Morris

Defensive line (10): George Karlaftis, Derrick Nnadi, Mike Danna, Tershawn Wharton, Felix Anudike-Uzomah, Malik Herring, Keondre Coburn, BJ Thompson, Matt Dickerson, Neil Farrell

Linebackers (6): Nick Bolton, Willie Gay, Drue Tranquill, Leo Chenal, Jack Cochrane, Cam Jones

Cornerback (5): L’Jarius Sneed, Trent McDuffie, Joshua Williams, Jaylen Watson, Nic Jones

Safety (4): Justin Reid, Bryan Cook, Mike Edwards, Charmarri Conner

Special teams (3): Harrison Butker, Tommy Townsend, James Winchester

(Photo of Neil Farrell: Kevin Sabitus / Getty Images)

“The Football 100,” the definitive ranking of the NFL’s best 100 players of all time, goes on sale this fall. Preorder it here.

Source link

Alexandra Williams
Alexandra Williams
Alexandra Williams is a writer and editor. Angeles. She writes about politics, art, and culture for LinkDaddy News.

Recent posts

Related articles

Packers day-after observations: O-line struggles, special teams penalties and more

GREEN BAY, Wis. — There are plenty of cheeses to choose from in Wisconsin. Cheddar, mozzarella, gouda,...

Twins playoff mailbag: Royce Lewis vs. Byron Buxton, Kenta Maeda’s role and bullpen hierarchy

It wasn’t always pretty, but the Minnesota Twins are coasting to the finish line for their third...

What to expect from Jameson Williams as Lions WR returns from gambling suspension

The Detroit Lions are fresh off a road win over the Green Bay Packers and in sole...

An NFL team overseas? More international games? Both ‘in the realm of possibility,’ NFL EVP says

An NFL franchise based in another country or all 32 teams playing one international game per season...

NFL reducing penalties for non-NFL gambling offenses: Sources

The NFL is changing its gambling policy, including reducing the penalty for prior violations from a six-game...

War of words breaks out between Barcelona and Sevilla over Negreira investigation

Barcelona have labelled Sevilla’s decision to suspend the protocol acts corresponding to the match between the two...

Leo Carlsson’s first Ducks camp: He’s learning and leaving an imprint

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Just a small scar was left near his right eye and Leo Carlsson was...

Europe takes commanding 6.5-1.5 lead over USA after Day 1 of Ryder Cup

Team Europe took a commanding 6.5-1.5 lead over Team USA after Day 1 of the Ryder Cup....