The Kansas City Chiefs have 16 players heading into free agency including three linebackers: Robert James, Frank Zombo and Akeem Jordan. James never made an impact, Zombo was a decent fill-in when Justin Houston went down with an elbow injury and Jordan was the lone starting linebacker for Kansas City not to make the Pro Bowl.
That’s not to say he didn’t perform well in 2013, but very few linebackers in the NFL are going to stand out in a crew including Derrick Johnson, Tamba Hali and Houston. Let’s take a look at the good and the bad of re-signing Jordan.
In his first season in a 3-4 defense, Jordan played very well. He was tied for third on the team with 68 tackles and added two forced fumbles. He’s an incredibly disciplined player who makes few mistakes. Jordan has a great relationship with Andy Reid, who’s been his coach for his entire pro career, and probably won’t cost too much to re-sign. Jordan was also a very productive member of one of the best special teams crews in the league.
It’s hard to say. He may not be a Pro Bowl talent like his fellow starting linebackers, but he outperformed his league-minimum contract immensely. The fact Jordan is the ‘weak spot’ of Kansas City’s linebacker crew speaks more to how great the other guys are, and not to his performance.
Jordan was a very pleasant surprise last season, and there’s no reason for him and Reid to part now. He fit in well with the Chiefs’ 3-4 defense and his price tag should not be too crazy. Add his contributions to special teams, and Jordan is a no-brainer to bring back to Kansas City in 2014.