KC Chiefs: The four biggest surprises in free agency

KC Chiefs, Byron Pringle. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
KC Chiefs, Byron Pringle. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports /
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Taylor Stallworth. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Taylor Stallworth. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

Veach got some great deals

The Chiefs are in a premium buyer’s position given the organizational culture and sustained success of the last decade, which means fans should expect to see some solid players signing for less than expected each offseason with K.C. That said, Veach really went discount shopping this offseason and came away with some very solid deals.

We’ve gotta start with Taylor Stallworth, perhaps the most overlooked transaction of the Chiefs offseason. Stallworth was a nice find for Chris Ballard with the Indianapolis Colts as a former rookie free agent out of South Carolina (college teammates with Rashad Fenton) who turned coaches’ heads enough to earn a decent amount of rotational reps inside as a rookie. Last season, he showed disruptive ability for the first time with 3 sacks and 12 quarterback hits, and if he’s a late bloomer, then he could be a nice find for the Chiefs. Oh yeah, he also cost $1.2 million this year on a one-season deal.

JuJu Smith-Schuster is a big prize for a receiving corps that will need multiple players to step up, yet he will only cost the team $2.5 million guaranteed this season and incentives can take that to just over $3.2M. For perspective, Austin Blythe earned $800K more from the Seattle Seahawks and he sat on the bench all of 2021.

Geron Christian gained starting experience at left and right tackle for the Houston Texans, was a third-round pick in 2018, and is still only 25 years old. Now he’s a member of the Chiefs’ deep front line for a mere $1.2 million himself. Andrew Wylie was brought back for only $2.5M and gives the team a reliable starter at three positions if needed. Ronald Jones gives the Chiefs a tough, between-the-numbers runner to go with Clyde Edwards-Helaire. The cost? $1.5 million.