The Kansas City Chiefs are once again between a rock and a hard place, as they decide how to go about re-signing Dwayne Bowe.
Kansas City wants nothing more than to sign the talented wide receiver, and they desperately need to find a way to do so, because the team simply could not handle losing him. Bowe was probably considering free agency, but with the recent acquisition of quarterback Alex Smith in a trade with the San Francisco 49ers, it is hard to believe Bowe would want to play someplace else.
Bowe and the Chiefs both want to get a deal done, with the only problem being money at this point. Kansas City could place the franchise tag on the wide out for the second consecutive season, which would pay him $11.4 million in 2013.
However, general manager Scott Pioli would prefer to get a long-term deal done instead so the organization can sleep better at night. Unfortunately, Pioli might be forced to franchise Bowe because the 28-year old is simply asking for too much money.
“Dwayne is a good, productive player at a position of need,” Pioli said. “He’s the best receiver on the Chiefs. He’s one of the better receivers in the NFL. . . . I don’t believe he’s as good as maybe his agent thinks – and when I say that I don’t say that disrespectfully – I just mean there was a difference in opinion. I think he’s a top receiver that would deserve to be compensated in the top ten range, not the top five.”
Considering the Chiefs are currently about $17 million under the salary cap, they could definitely pay Bowe top-five money. However, he did not have a very productive season in 2012, in which he hauled in 59 receptions for 801 yards and three touchdowns, to garner that kind of cash.
Granted, Kansas City was terrible last season and there was no solid quarterback to throw him the ball, but there is still no way he should get over $11 million per season over multiple years.
At this point, it does not appear Bowe’s agent is going to budge, so the best thing for the Chiefs to do is to franchise their star wide receiver and hope for better luck next off-season. This is also a great deal for Bowe because he will still be one of the highest-paid wide receivers in the league in 2013, and he will get an opportunity to post career-high numbers with Smith as his quarterback.