5 Underrated Free Agents Kansas City Chiefs Should Target For 2014
Kansas City Chiefs: 5 Underrated Free Agents They Should Target For 2014
Alright, John Dorsey, it's time to do what you do best, my friend. After commandeering one of the more impressive offseason turnarounds in NFL history, all eyes are again on the Kansas City Chiefs' front office in anticipation of which moves it'll look to make through 2014 free agency.
Was Dorsey a one-offseason-wonder, or a true managerial maverick? With the release of veteran cornerback Dunta Robinson on Friday, it appears Kansas City fans are on the verge of finding out.
Robinson presumably got the ax due to his ineffectiveness and because he's become expendable with the Chiefs' less-than-desirable cap situation. If Dorsey and the front office desire more wiggle room, they'll have to find opportunities to create more cap space.
From a capable safety to the much-discussed wide receiver debacle, there are several needs that the Chiefs need to address before next season. The team simply doesn't have the cash to sign their entire wishlist or retain all of their own players who will become free agents themselves in March. Dorsey will likely have to sacrifice a few pawns in order to move forward.
It seems the team is looking to take the value route in regards to their free agency this offseason, following the official signing of former CFL wideout Weston Dressler earlier this week. Luckily for Kansas City, this year's pool is deceivingly deep and several middle-of-the-pack agents could provide immediate help to coach Andy Reid's squad.
Let's take a glance at five underrated free agents that can make an impact for KC in 2014 while taking up minimal cap space.
5. WR Arrelious Benn
I might be going out on a ridiculously long limb here, but so be it. Yes, Arrelious Benn missed the entire 2013 season with his second ACL injury in his left knee over the last four years. Yes, Benn has largely been a disappointment in the NFL after being touted as a five-star prospect out of high school. But, if the Chiefs can grab him at or near the league minimum this offseason, they should do it. Anyone who's watched the dude's high school and college highlights knows that Benn has serious talent. He simply can't stay healthy; if he can, it's a quality, dirt-cheap pickup for Kansas City.
4. TE Garrett Graham
For the part of Chiefs Nation that has been led to mistakenly believe that Kansas City has an issue at tight end, this is as far as I'm willing to go. Graham owns the size (6-foot-3, 243 pounds) and hands to be an effective check-down option for Alex Smith. Heck, if Smith is feeling froggy and wants to attempt a throw or two downfield, Graham is good for that as well, possessing a 34.5-inch vertical leap. He'd be a great value addition for the Chiefs and should surely be considered, but only at the right price.
3. CB Captain Munnerlyn
Aside from having arguably the coolest name in the league, Captain Munnerlyn became a key ingredient within the Carolina Panthers' suddenly stifling defense in 2013. He's a great coverage corner, but also possesses big-play ability. Munnerlyn will probably be the most expensive name on this list as there have been several reports that he's looking for the payday after his 2013 performance. But if he can't get what he expects due to his lack of size, Kansas City should certainly take a swipe at Munnerlyn.
2. S James Ihedigbo
With Kendrick Lewis likely departing, James Ihedigbo could be the cost-efficient upgrade that the Chiefs desire. Ihedigbo's coverage skills are among the league's best. He had 11 pass defenses in 2013 compared to consensus no. 1 free agent safety Jairus Byrd's six, but his price tag this offseason probably won't reflect that.
1. WR Ted Ginn, Jr.
I've been pushing the idea of Ted Ginn, Jr. sporting a Kansas City uniform in 2014 for a while now. Ginn isn't among the top receivers available and will likely come relatively cheap. He's undoubtedly an upgrade from Donnie Avery, and will play for a smaller paycheck. Additionally, Ginn is enough of a threat to draw coverage off Dwayne Bowe, something neither McCluster or Avery effectively accomplished in 2013.