Exhibit A: Consecutive tags aren’t feasible
Should Dorsey decide to retain Berry with the franchise tag again in 2017, the Chiefs will have guaranteed him a total of $23.76 million. To put that number into perspective, safety Harrison Smith’s long-term contract is set to pay him $28 million in guaranteed money. He’s currently under contract with the Minnesota Vikings for the next six years. See the problem here?
The Chiefs would have to commit 85% of Smith’s guarantee to Berry for four fewer years of service time. That simply isn’t good business even when considering the team has only recently entered its championship contention window. Why would a team fork over nearly $24 million for a player that isn’t going to figure into their future?
I can’t speak for John Dorsey, but I have to think a part of the two sides’ failure to successfully negotiate a new deal hinged upon Berry’s value. There was clearly a disagreement over what Berry was worth. As such, why would Dorsey tie up a ton of cap space, two years straight, for a player he isn’t willing to pay like one of the top five safeties in the league? When the spring rolls around, the Chiefs will have other fish to fry and having limited cap space could be a hindrance to extending other players, which brings me to my next point.
Next: Exhibit B: Dontari Poe