With the Kansas City Chiefs rewarding a few of their key leaders with new contract extensions over the past six months — DT Chris Jones, TE Travis Kelce and QB Patrick Mahomes — the front office may be forced to make some tough decisions in 2021 when it comes to some other core contributors with expiring deals.
One such player will be starting CB Bashaud Breeland, who this offseason was arrested at gunpoint on five charges and later suspended for the first four games of the season for a separate violation of the league’s substance-abuse policy.
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Breeland Focused on Super Bowl, Not Looming Contract
During his mid-week media availability, Breeland was quick to deflect attention away from any potential offseason endeavors (contract included) when asked by reporters. Instead, the 28-year-old kept his focus on the Chiefs’ remaining schedule before the start of the postseason.
“Right now, I’m just focused on the Kansas City Chiefs and what can I do to help this team win this last quarter of football and what I can do to help them get in the playoffs and to the Super Bowl,” Breeland said on Wednesday. “I really haven’t had much thought about the offseason. I’m just focused on the present.”
In 8 starts since returning from suspension, the former Washington Football Team fourth-round draft pick has recorded 30 total tackles, 4 pass breakups, 2 interceptions and a forced fumble. He has now recorded at least 2 interceptions in three consecutive years and six of his seven pro seasons overall.
Breeland Burned by Slowed Corner Market
Back in April, the seventh-year veteran elected to re-up with the defending Super Bowl champs on a 1-year deal worth up to $4.5 million after the free agent cornerback market stalled out.
Shortly after helping Kansas City secure a victory in Super Bowl LIV, Breeland told Good Morning Football that “I just want to get what I deserve from this league,” despite the Chiefs being tight against the salary cap.
Much like Breeland, other experienced cornerbacks such as Logan Ryan, Bradley Roby and Chris Harris Jr. were left out in the cold with the lack of urgency and demand from teams willing to spend on bloated, long-term contracts at the position.
Chemistry Growing in K.C. Secondary
A key piece of Steve Spagnuolo’s defensive unit, which is currently tied for the second-most interceptions (14) through Week 13 despite utilizing a rotation of cornerbacks due to injuries, Breeland also believes the best might still be yet to come in the secondary.
“The chemistry is growing,” Breeland continued during his Wednesday presser. “Around this time (last season), we were playing with a lot of different pieces. We had K-Full (Kendall Fuller) playing different positions going into the playoffs. The chemistry was growing as well during those times. I feel like this time, the three corners we have now, the chemistry is getting there. You’ve got a bunch of smart players. Sneed is a very smart individual, as well as Charvarius Ward. We all play off each other.”
Best passer rating allowed by defender
1. L'Jarius Sneed – 33.9
2. Xavien Howard – 43.2
3. Matt Milano – 44.7
t4. Bashaud Breeland – 47.4
t4. Jessie Bates III – 47.4
1. Andrew Sendejo – 150.5
2. Josh Jones – 148.7
3. Antoine Winfield Jr. – 145.3
4. Noah Igbinoghene – 144.5
— ProFootballReference (@pfref) December 6, 2020
Briefly looking ahead to the 2021 offseason, Breeland is currently one of 18 unrestricted free agents for Kansas City, with Ward among the five restricted free agents the Chiefs will need to decide on.
His performance down the final stretch of the season, along with the continued development of 2020 rookies L’Jarius Sneed and BoPete Keyes will likely play a big factor in the team’s thinking for the future.
Chris Licata is an NFL contributor covering the Kansas City Chiefs from enemy territory in Denver, CO. Follow him on Twitter @Chris__Licata or join our Heavy on Chiefs Facebook community for the latest out of Chiefs Kingdom!