DE Carlos Dunlap Plans to Reach 3 Lofty Goals While With Chiefs

Getty Former Seattle Seahawks pass rusher Carlos Dunlap could return to the team in 2022.

Kansas City Chiefs veteran defensive end Carlos Dunlap has had what many would consider a successful NFL career. He’s made multiple Pro Bowls, recorded 96 career sacks, and played in 186 total games during his 12-year NFL career.

But as he enters his 13th NFL season, Dunlap, 33, still has several goals he wants to accomplish and wants to accomplish all of them with the defending AFC West champions.

“I want to get 100 sacks, I haven’t won a playoff game and I haven’t won a Super Bowl. This team gives me the best opportunity to do it,” Dunlap told the media following his first Chiefs training camp practice on Thursday, Aug. 4.


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Registering 100 career sacks is considered an elite milestone for best the pass rushers to ever play in the NFL. So it makes sense that Dunlap, who only needs four sacks to reach the century mark, would want to accomplish that this season.

Dunlap spent 11 years of his career in Cincinnati playing for the Bengals, so playoff games were few and far between for the veteran defensive end. The Bengals played in a total of five playoff games from 2011-15, and they came out of those games with an 0-5 record. The Seattle Seahawks made the playoffs during the 2021 season with Dunlap but were knocked out in the Wild-Card Round. All of this means that Dunlap has never gotten close to participating in a Super Bowl, let alone winning one.

These are the main reasons why Dunlap chose to sign a one-year deal worth up to $8 million with the Chiefs at the start of training camp. Dunlap also noted that defensive tackle Chris Jones and offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr., who Dunlap coincidentally worked out with down in Miami during the offseason, played a part in getting him to Kansas City.


Dunlap Reveals 1 Incentive in Contract

The fact that Dunlap’s contract with Kansas City was reported to be worth “up to” $8 million tells us that the deal is likely incentive-based. While we don’t know all of the incentives that are written into the contract, Dunlap did reveal what one of them is centered around:

sacks.

“I try to average eight [sacks] a year,” Dunlap explained. “I want to go for more than that, obviously. I put my money where my mouth is with the deal we did [with the Chiefs], structured it that way for incentives to increase it (career sack total).”

Money and career goals aside, Dunlap is grateful to be part of a winning organization.

“Great opportunity with a great organization,” Dunlap said of why he chose to join the Chiefs. “What they’ve done the last few years — playing against them on the other side of the ball I wanted to add my specialties to it, and we felt like we had mutual interest.”

Interest in Dunlap’s services ramped up as training camps around the NFL began this summer. But in the end, he liked what was being offered by the Chiefs.

“Yes, there were a couple other teams [that were interested in me], and obviously the last week or so ever since camp started things heated up,” Dunlap said. “But I liked what I heard from the Chiefs. That’s why I came out here to meet with them in person, to see how I fit, see how they would use me, see how I would contribute, see if it was a fit, and I’m here.”


Chiefs Offered Dunlap a Large Role on Defense

Nearing his mid-30s, it’s easy to assume that Dunlap would be nothing more than a rotational player for the Chiefs at this point in his career. But that’s not what Dunlap expects his role to be in Kansas City. Instead, he said the Chiefs offered him the opportunity to play on every down.

“At this point in my career I’ve been a closer in so many games and have 96 sacks in my career,” Dunlap said. “They try to correlate with being older to taking down your snaps, but I like to eat whatever is being put on the table.”

While Dunlap’s productivity will ultimately determine how much playing time he receives in Kansas City, in the meantime he will have to battle rookie first-round pick George Karlaftis and third-year pass rusher Mike Danna for snaps opposite of three-time Pro Bowler Frank Clark on the defensive line.

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