Chiefs quarterbacks all entering a make-or-break year

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Would Chase Daniel be this popular on any other team? Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Chase Daniel

Chiefs fans have had a long love affair with their backup quarterbacks. Brodie Croyle, Brady Quinn, Damon Huard, Tyler Thigpen, Ricky Stanzi, and Alex Tanney have all seen cult-like followings at some point in time. Honestly, that’s just what happens when you don’t have a solid starting option. But when you mix in a hometown hero, well, folks take it to another level.

Chase Daniel has never done anything to amaze me. Neither of his performances have been anything more than what should be described as serviceable. However, you will see in the comments a number of people seemingly ready to fight to the death over that statement. And it is truly amazing how many of those people don’t even know his name.

But regardless of anything else, Chase Daniel is in a contract year. With the other big contracts coming up, Daniel’s has to be pretty low on the totem pole. Re-signing a backup quarterback has to take a back seat to guys like Justin Houston, Eric Berry, and Derrick Johnson. It is up to Chase Daniel to flat-out prove the Chiefs NEED him on this roster. I don’t see it happening, but this is the year he has to do it.

At some point, Aaron Murray is going to have to beat out Chase Daniel and get some playing time that matters. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Murray

Once considered by some to be a first-round prospect, injuries and lack of ideal physical stature turned Murray’s stock into a fifth rounder. He showed quality traits at Georgia, but his critics were also able to find inconsistencies and question marks in his play, especially in some of his bigger games.

The biggest concern with Murray right now is the fact that Chase Daniel is still on this roster. Coming into his second season, and with beneficial cap relief from cutting Daniel, it is not unreasonable to expect Murray to be the clear cut backup to Alex Smith. Some folks will talk about “grooming” and “bringing him along”… but part of that has to include beating out the current backup. Murray is a free agent in 2018. That doesn’t give him much time to be groomed if he’s not even working with the second team yet.

Plain and simple, Aaron Murray needs to emerge from training camp as the top backup on this roster. That will actually answer two questions as there is no way the Chiefs will keep Chase Daniel on as an emergency third quarterback with a $4.8 million cap hit. If Murray can’t outplay Daniel this year, then how can the Chiefs have any faith in his ability to become a starter over the following two seasons?

Next: The sleeper?