New Chiefs WR Explains Why He Took Less Money to Join KC

Getty Green Bay Packers wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling.

The Tyreek Hill trade was a tough pill to swallow for Chiefs Kingdom.

Yes, the Kansas City Chiefs got a haul of draft picks in return for the 28-year-old wide receiver who is now getting paid upwards of $25 million per season. However, Kansas City no longer has the six-time Pro Bowler and one of the most explosive playmakers the NFL has ever seen.

The Chiefs’ newest addition to the wide receiver room, Marquez Valdes-Scantling — who signed a three-year, $30 million deal with them — isn’t about to come to Kansas City and bring the kind of playmaking ability that Hill did. However, that doesn’t mean he can’t be a tremendous asset for Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs offense.

“I think that with the departure of [Hill], it gave me a really good opportunity to be in position to come in and be an immediate impact right away,” Valdes-Scantling explained during his introductory press conference in Kansas City on March 25.

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Despite not tallying up the kind of stats Hill has during his career, what the 6-foot-4 receiver that runs a 4.37 40 can provide for Kansas City is very valuable, and he knows that.

“I’ve been a top deep threat in the league for my four years in my career,” Valdes-Scantling said. “Those stats will speak for themselves. But also, I’m not limited to just that. I think coach [Andy] Reid does a really good job of getting his playmakers the ball, and I think with having Pat under center and coach Reid calling those plays, I think I fit right in.”

With Davante Adams in the fold — who averaged 153.5 targets per season during Valdes-Scantling’s four years in Green Bay — MVS’s statistics with the Packers don’t accurately portray what he’s fully capable of. Granted — tight end Travis Kelce has averaged 141 targets per season over the last four years in Kansas City, which is also a large amount. But Patrick Mahomes also averaged more pass attempts per season over that same timeframe (577) compared to Aaron Rodgers (555).

Based on his 2021 stats, Hill leaving Kansas City frees up 159 targets to be redistributed in the Chiefs offense heading into the 2022 season. That puts Valdes-Scantling — who averages 17.5 yards per catch since entering the NFL — in a position to soak up a chunk of those targets and could have him in line for a career year.

“I think that I provide a spark,” Valdes-Scantling said. “Being in the league four years, playing with Aaron (Rodgers), I know what it looks like. And obviously playing with Davante (Adams), I learned so much from him. I think that my skill set — it will speak for itself come Sundays.”


Marquez Valdes-Scantling Introductory Press Conference | Kansas City ChiefsWide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling speaks with the media after joining the Kansas City Chiefs. Subscribe for more videos! bit.ly/2OuOUnB More Chiefs NFL action! bit.ly/2Moa1VR #KansasCityChiefs #Chiefs #NFL Follow Our Social Media! Website: chiefs.com/ Facebook: facebook.com/KansasCityChiefs Twitter: twitter.com/Chiefs Instagram: instagram.com/chiefs2022-03-25T18:18:37Z

Why MVS Chose Chiefs Despite Better Offers Elsewhere

Valdes-Scantling acknowledged during his presser that he was contemplating joining the Chiefs and New Orleans Saints, or going back to the Packers. In the end, he chose the Chiefs, who apparently didn’t offer him the best deal.

“I turned down a bunch of other deals for more money because I didn’t want to go lose… it’s not always about money,” he explained.

Mahomes played a part in the recruitment process as well, as Valdes-Scantling said the superstar quarterback called him and told him how badly he wanted MVS to join Kansas City. Mahomes now gets a receiver who, at 27-years-old, has some of his best football ahead of him, and is self-motivated to be the best possible version of himself.

“As a freshman, I wasn’t good enough to make the team,” Valdes-Scantling explained of his high school career. “I had to take accountability — stop pointing my finger at everybody else… and have to say I got to be better, and once I did that and used that as self-motivation and learn how to build that drive within myself but not need anybody else to do it, [I] took that and ran with it. And I’ve been self-motivated ever since. And I think it’s paid off for me.”


KC’s Receiver Room Taking Shape

The wide receivers that are locked up for the 2022 season in Kansas City along with MVS are Smith-Schuster, Corey Coleman, Mecole Hardman, 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.

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