One of the team’s next moves following the Hill trade was signing former Green Bay Packers receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling to a three-year, $30 million deal that’s worth a maximum of $36 million, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
While at the surface a move like that might seem like one of the last moves Kansas City would make at that position due to the financial constraints, Valdes-Scantling is only on the books with a $4.8 million cap hit in 2022, per Over The Cap. That means, despite also signing running back Ronald Jones and linebacker Jermaine Carter Jr. following the Hill trade, the Chiefs still have the financial room to bring in another wide receiver if they want.
And that’s exactly what they are trying to do.
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Chiefs Asking Around About Potential WR Trade
Sharing the intel on ESPN’s morning show, “Get Up!” NFL insider Dianna Russini explained what she’s hearing the Chiefs are trying to accomplish at this point of the offseason.
“You hear the word replenish, and that’s essentially what they’re trying to do. What the Chiefs, from what I can understand, in terms of replenish, is, they’re calling teams to see if — perhaps teams that we haven’t heard about — are interested in perhaps trading one of their top receivers to Kansas City.”
“To me, that tells me, Kansas City is looking at the entire market,” Russini continued. They’re looking at free agency. Who’s still on the street right now? We know Odell Beckham Jr., Jarvis Landry is still available. We know they’ve done their work there.
“But they’re thinking, ‘Perhaps we can do better. We can come close to replacing a player like Tyreek Hill by going after a team that has a top receiver that maybe would be open to some dealings.’ Because we know, that the Chiefs, they’ve got the money. They’ve got the draft picks, and this could be their answer. Of course, if they don’t get their answer there, we have the draft coming up in just a few weeks.”
Chiefs Making ‘Philosophical Shift’ on Offense?
The wide receivers that are locked up for the 2022 season in Kansas City currently are Valdes-Scantling, Mecole Hardman, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Corey Coleman, Josh Gordon, Daurice Fountain, Gehrig Dieter, Cornell Powell, Justin Watson, Chris Finke, Gary Jennings, Matthew Sexton, and Omar Bayless.
Hardman, Gordon, and Fountain are the only players that were active for a Chiefs game last season.
The top of the wide receiver depth chart looks very different in Kansas City compared to last season. However, the team got younger and bigger at the position, which leaves some around the NFL believing a philosophical shift is taking place for the Chiefs.
“The more people I talk to around the league, the more you get the sense of a philosophical shift for the #Chiefs,” NFL Media’s Mike Giardi wrote in wake of the MVS signing. “They got bigger at WR with JuJu and MVS. ‘They can morph into something different’ said one AFC exec I spoke to. ‘Mahomes can make it work. That’s why he’s THE GUY.’”
Time will tell if this shift was a conscious decision by the Chiefs, or if they were scrambling to add more playmakers once things turned south in the negotiations with Hill.
However, if Kansas City is executing a specific plan to re-tool its wide receiver room, then that will help narrow down who they could potentially add next.