Former KC Chiefs center Austin Reiter might find a home with Saints

Austin Reiter, Kansas City Chiefs. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Austin Reiter, Kansas City Chiefs. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

Given the need for quality offensive linemen all around the National Football League and the fact that he’s held down the starting center role for the K.C. Chiefs in each of the last two seasons, it seems odd that Austin Reiter remains available as a free agent with one week already come and gone in the 2021 regular season. Fortunately the New Orleans Saints might be ready to provide him a home.

Reiter has generated some decent interest as a free agent in the last few weeks with multiple visits, but unfortunately nothing has panned out. It’s not uncommon for teams to wait to sign a veteran free agent until after the first week in order to make sure their salaries are not guaranteed for the full year—a weird NFL contractual wrinkle—but Reiter wouldn’t likely command too much as it is and the need for proven linemen should have outweighed all of that.

Nick Underhill, beat reporter for the Saints, has word that the team is bringing in Reiter for a workout in the wake of an injury to starting center Eric McCoy.

Former K.C. Chiefs center Austin Reiter might be able to find a new home with the New Orleans Saints.

Reiter has been the starting center for a Super Bowl contender for the last two years, which means he comes with not only one ring but the experience of multiple championship runs. He’s been coached by Andy Reid and positionally by Andy Heck and he’s still only 29-years-old.

At the end of August, Reiter made a couple free agent visits with the Houston Texans and the Cincinnati Bengals, but nothing worked out. Earlier this offseason, reports emerged that the Chiefs were interested in having him return once again, but it’s possible that he spurned that advance knowing there was going to be competition for the role. That’s conjecture, however, and it’s impossible to know why the two parties did not work something out without hearing direct from the player or the team.

McCoy has a calf injury and it’s not yet sure how long he will be out for the Saints. However, the team’s season-opening win over the Green Bay Packers should have them excited about just how good they can be in ’21, and Reiter would help provide some security up front as the team looks to continue that momentum.