Salary cap space could mean Kansas City Chiefs are finished with roster moves
By Matt Conner
The Kansas City Chiefs will head into training camp with only $7.5 million in cap space, which means they could be set with their roster.
Brett Veach has made his moves. He’s traded Alex Smith and Marcus Peters. He’s signed Sammy Watkins and Anthony Hitchens. He’s drafted a brand new defensive nucleus. He’s released longtime veterans like Ron Parker and Derrick Johnson.
Last year at this time, we were still trying to make heads or tails of the Chiefs’ switch at general manager, allowing John Dorsey to walk before the season began instead of staying put for the full duration of his contract. After a short search, Veach was promoted from within and he immediately got to work.
Early on, Chiefs Kingdom was treated to a few aggressive moves that indicated Veach’s approach and mindset. He traded for Kevin Pierre-Louis and again for Cam Erving and once again for Reggie Ragland. In a league where trades are rare and such moves are often conducted during the offseason, Veach was pulling the trigger and buying low on players in the hopes of unearthing a gem.
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He was also beginning to mold the team in his image, however. That’s something he’s continued to do throughout the last year. On the one hand, last year’s plethora of preseason moves might indicate that Veach could pull off some more preseason deals and bring in some exciting new faces (because seriously that Ragland trade was quite exciting). On the other hand, last July was a limited window within which Veach could operate with a few quick moves to get the roster ready for the regular season.
The Chiefs have just over $7.5 million in salary cap space at this point, which likely means that Veach is done buying on the open market—unless he wants to clear some space. Every team will want some cap flexibility heading into training camp and the regular season to be able to deal with injuries and roster emergencies. Less than $10 million is a decent amount of space for such a rainy day fund, but it also doesn’t allow for many planned-out acquisitions.
For those expecting more late summer maneuvers from Veach in his second preseason, it might be good to adjust your predictions knowing that Veach is no longer under the gun to shape this roster. He’s been at the helm for the Chiefs for over a year now with plenty of time and opportunity to make his moves.