With free agents coming off the board rapidly, it’s imperative that NFL front offices have Plan B (and Plans C,D & E) ready to at a moment’s notice. Kansas City is no exception. Right now Plan A, as discussed yesterday, looks to be the pursuit of Houston Texans offensive tackle Eric Winston. And that’s an appropriate Plan A. But where do the Chiefs go if Winston opts to go elsewhere? The Plan B options aren’t plentiful, but there’s one that’s better than all the others and it’s to target Winston’s former teammate in Houston, center Chris Myers.
Center is a huge liability for Kansas City, and I would argue it’s unthinkable that a team with playoff expectations and dark horse Super Bowl possibilities should even consider going into the season with Casey Wiegmann at center. Unfortunately it’s also unthinkable to start 2012 with Barry Richardson as your right tackle, which is why Winston should be the prime free-agent target. But Myers should be a close second.
The Houston center is 30 years old, but he’s rated by ESPN’s Scouts Inc, as the #6 free agent—not just the sixth-best left, but including a list with Carl Nicks & Vincent Jackson, both of whom inked deals with Tampa Bay yesterday. Myers led an offensive line that was one of the best in the business and with Jamaal Charles coming back in the Kansas City backfield, there’s no reason to think the same couldn’t happen in KC.
When you get down to it, given the cap space the Chiefs have available, which is among the most in the NFL, there really is no reason to hold back. Why not go for Winston and Myers as a package combo, and enter 2012 with a tough offensive line with playoff-experienced veterans, both the imports from Houston and the holdovers for KC’s 2010 AFC West championship team?
The opportunities are there, but at this time of year, things have to move fast. Go for both Myers and Winston and even if you “settle” for one, you’ve still drastically upgraded a key area of your team.