KC Chiefs: Five interior defensive line options in free agency
By Jacob Milham
The 2022 offseason is in full swing, with the NFL Combine kicking off the festivities. The new league year begins Mar. 16 at 3 p.m. C.T., or when free agency officially begins.
The Kansas City Chiefs have different free agent priorities each season. Last year, overhauling the offensive line dominated offseason priorities, with left guard Joe Thuney being the Chiefs’ biggest free-agent signing. 2022 brings a new set of personnel gaps to fill, primarily on the defensive side of the ball.
The secondary corps is sparse, with safety Tyrann Matthieu and cornerback Charvarius Ward pending free agents. Kansas City cut linebacker Anthony Hitchens, leaving a starter-sized hole. But, the defensive front is set to be thin, with interior defenders Derrick Nnadi and Jarran Reed scheduled to be free agents. Several defensive ends, including Melvin Ingram and Alex Okafor, will also not return or project to not return.
Several Kansas City Chiefs defenders are entering free agency. How will the team fill these looming holes?
Instead of tackling all the positions at once, let’s focus on the interior defensive lineman. Below are the pending free agents from Kansas City:
- 2021 Stats (10 starts, 40% snaps played, 3.0 sacks, 38 total tackles)
- 2021 Stats (17 starts, 64% snaps played, 2.5 sacks, 43 total tackles)
Neither player had amazing seasons for Kansas City, but are amongst the best available free agents at their position. It is a weak year for signing interior defensive lineman, which is good for the players but bad for Kansas City. Value or cap-friendly signings will keep Kansas City in contention, allowing Kansas City to spend premium money on premium positions.
The offseason starts the march towards another championship. With every move either increasing or decreasing championship chances, what players should the Cheifs pursue?