Tamba Hali’s Future With The Chiefs


Tamba Hali, better known as sack master extraordinaire. Oh, wait. Is that just me that calls him that?

sack master extraordinaire

Well anyways, Tamba is just one of those guys for the Chiefs who we all know and love. Personally, he’s my favorite player and between him, Justin Houston, and Dee Ford I would say we have one of the best outside linebacker groups in the NFL at the moment. However, I don’t believe that the chiefs will keep all three of them around long-term.

The mostly likely outcome would be to trade one of the three, and with Houston in his prime and in the process of re-signing, and Ford as a rookie with all that budding youth, it appears that Hali might be the one to go. I don’t know when exactly this would happen. However, if I were a betting man, I would go so far as to say that it is most likely to happen before the trade deadline next season. I have come to this conclusion for the following three reasons.


As I have said before, age is a very relative thing in not only the NFL but professinoal sports as a whole. As players start to get older they turn from a rookie to an age-old veteran in a span of around seven to eight years. Tamba is currently in his ninth season in the league at the ripe age of thirty-one. Now, at pretty much any other job in society, being thirty-one years old isn’t exactly worthy of veteran status. In fact if Tamba were a medical doctor instead of a sack doctor then he most likely would have received his degree around four years ago and would be fresh out of his residency term depending on the type of metaphorical doctor he is.

That’s not how the NFL works though, once players turn thirty they are looked at in a different light. They are now seen as veterans in the league and one of two things usually happens to veterans. They are either traded to another team to go live out their dreams of winning a Superbowl a la Tony Gonzalez, or they choose to stay with their team (usually for a lesser contract) and ride things out in the city they know and love. Right now, Hali is at the prime age where that decision is to be made. Based on this, what happens to Tamba will most likely be narrowed down to price.


If the Chiefs hang on to Tamba Hali next year he will cost them somewhere in the area of sixteen million dollars in cap space. That’s a lot of money ladies and gentlemen. I don’t believe that the Chiefs would just cut Hali because that would just be plain stupid. He’s still a great player, he’s just getting a bit older. Plus if they were to cut him it would only free up about nine million in cap space next year and the rest would be still owed to him by the Chiefs.

Sep 29, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs outside linebacker Tamba Hali (91) hits New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) while passing during the second half at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs won 41-14. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

No, if the Chiefs get rid of him it will be in a trade so that they can get what would most likely be either a fourth or fifth round draft pick and that way the weight of the final year of his contract falls to another team. The Chiefs could always choose to re-sign him to a lesser  contract next year, just depends on what both sides can get worked out and also it comes down to his production.


This season, Hali has accumulated four sacks to go along with twenty-five total tackles and three forced fumbles. That sets him on pace for eight sacks, fifty tackles, and six forced fumbles. Those are pretty good numbers folks. If he finishes with a sack total of eight he would tie his rookie total for the season, nothing really special but Hali gets double-teamed a lot more often now which is probably why Justin Houston has so many sacks at the moment (you can’t double both of them).

Eight sacks isn’t a bad number if you constantly have two blockers to deal with. The six forced fumbles would also be a career high for Hali although fumbles are a bit harder to predict.

So, Hali’s production isn’t really waning much with his age. This would mean that most likely if the Chiefs were to resign him he would still want a pretty looking contract. The Chiefs most likely won’t want to lock up that much cap space to have a veteran linebacker on the roster when they just drafted Dee Ford and have other needs such as wide-out and corner. So, in my opinion, because of all these factors the Chiefs will end up trading sack master extraordinaire sometime before next years trade deadline.