The Kansas City Chiefs have officially signed offensive lineman Prince Tega Wanogho to a reserve/futures deal, according to the NFL’s transaction wire, which means the Chiefs are adding another developmental tackle to the mix for next season.
While the Chiefs are obviously focused primarily on the Super Bowl and their hopes of becoming the NFL’s only repeat champions since the New England Patriots back in the 2003-04 season, the front office is also beginning to piece together the roster for the 2021 campaign. That begins with the signing of promising young players to what are known as futures contracts.
Wanogho is likely a familiar name to diehard NFL fans for two reasons. First, his name is impossible to forget. Second, and most importantly, he was an exciting tackle from Auburn who ended up getting drafted just last spring in the sixth round by the Philadelphia Eagles.
While Wanogho failed to make the Eagles active roster out of what limited preseason teams were allowed to have in the face of a global pandemic, the Auburn product was able to make the team’s practice squad where he remained all season. Wanogho played his first NFL game in Week 17 against Washington, but that included a scant 2 snaps on special teams.
The Chiefs have an impressive new offensive tackle project with the addition of Prince Tega Wanogho.
From there, Wanogho could have reverted to the team’s practice squad but he instead chose to sign with the Chiefs two weeks later. Details there are unknown—were the Eagles suddenly not interested?—but suffice it to say that the Chiefs then released Wanogho from their own practice squad earlier this week only to sign him to a futures deal instead.
Wanogho is an ideal sort of developmental prospect for the Chiefs at this stage given the state of the offensive line and the questions moving forward, specifically at tackle. Eric Fisher suffered an Achilles injury on Sunday in the AFC Championship game, which means a long road of recovery is ahead. Mitchell Schwartz hasn’t played since Week 7 due to back pain, and it’s impossible to get a read on his hopes going forward in the face of lingering back pain.
For his part, Wanogho is still relatively new to the game, and it’s impossible to read a scouting report without seeing high hopes for his pro projections. He didn’t even start playing the sport until high school and even then it was defensive tackle. After sitting out his first year at Auburn, he became a three-year starter at left tackle against the best competition that college football has to offer.
Why the Eagles allowed this sort of investment to get away is a good question, but the Chiefs did well to somehow grab him for the foreseeable future. It might not work out, but the potential is there, and the Chiefs are going to need to seek answers via multiple avenues in order to piece together a stronger offensive front in 2021. Wanogho is a long shot but the Chiefs have a good history of making these sorts of player-projects work out.