ince being traded to the Kansas City Chiefs at the November 2 trade deadline, defensive end Melvin Ingram has been a phenomenal asset for Kansas City’s defense. But considering he’s only on a one-year deal — which makes him a free agent this upcoming offseason — there’s one question that still needs to be answered regarding the veteran defender:
Does Melvin Ingram want to return to Kansas City next season?
The answer is yes. But Ingram’s not ready to start talking about this upcoming offseason just yet.
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“I definitely got a lot of desire, but that’s looking too far ahead in the future,” Ingram said during his press conference on Wednesday, January 19. “I ain’t never been a person to look far into the future. I’m just focused on the task we got at hand right now, and that’s trying to win another playoff game.”
Ingram Impact Player for Chiefs
Ingram was traded from the Pittsburgh Steelers to the Chiefs in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick. Since the trade, Kansas City is 9-1 and allowing just 16.6 points per game on defense. That’s in part because of what Ingram has brought to the Chiefs in terms of ability.
From being traded to the Chiefs until the end of the regular season, Ingram recorded an overall grade of 79.0 from PFF, which ranks sixth among Chiefs defenders, and second to only Chris Jones along the defensive line. However, his 88.2 run defense grade was by far the best on the team, as the next best defender against the run Kansas City has is cornerback Rashad Fenton, who graded nearly 10 points lower at 79.8 during the regular season.
Comparing Ingram’s run defense grade as a Chief to other edge defenders’ grades for the entire regular season, Ingram ranks second overall in the league, only behind Dallas Cowboys defensive end Demarcus Lawrence (93.2).
Spags Gushes Over Ingram
Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo had no shortage of nice things to say about Ingram during his press conference prior to Kansas City’s victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on January 16.
“[Melvin Ingram is] a great teammate, and you don’t know those things about him when you watch him from afar. He’s passionate about the game of football and he’s a real intuitive football player. He gets football. When you go over and explain something to him or we’re doing it this way because of, it makes sense to him,” Spagnuolo explained on January 13.
“Some guys you coach through the years, they’ll shake their head and say that they’ve got it, but you’re not really sure if they do. You know that when Melvin [Ingram III] says, “yeah, I know what you’re talking about coach,” that he surely does. So, that’s something I would not have known. The rest of it you see, physicality and all the other things we talk about. I think we saw that on tape.”
After a quiet outing against his former team in which he recorded one tackle on 37 defensive snaps in the Wild Card Round, per Pro Sports Reference, Ingram will look to bounce back in the Divisional Round of the playoffs when Kansas City faces the Buffalo Bills. Kickoff is on Sunday, January 23 at 5:30 p.m. Arrowhead Time.