Mitchell Schwartz will be remembered as Chiefs franchise great

Mitchell Schwartz #71 of the Kansas City Chiefs (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)
Mitchell Schwartz #71 of the Kansas City Chiefs (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images) /

Dependability is necessary to make it in the NFL. Few things derail a career faster than inconsistency both in and out of professional sports. When a player can be counted on week after week and year after year it can be the difference between playing in the Wild Card round and playing in a Super Bowl. One of the most dependable players in K.C. Chiefs history has retired. Mitchell Schwartz hung up his cleats and announced the news in an emotional and thankful tweet.

After signing with Kansas City in free agency in 2016, Schwartz immediately made the offense better. Named an All-Pro every season of his Chiefs career, except for 2020, Schwartz became one of the most impactful players not just in Kansas City, but in all of football. Schwartz was the anchor of a Chiefs offensive line that saw a career renaissance out of Alex Smith in 2016 and 2017 as well as the ascension of NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes from 2018-2020.

Schwartz won the Pro Football Focus Matthews Award for the 2018 season, given out by the organization to their highest-rated offensive lineman at the end of a year. Entering his last full season of play in 2019, Pro Football Focus once again lauded the right tackle on his consistency,

"“Schwartz turned in career-highs in overall grade (83.6) and pass-block grade (85.6) this past season. He also finished the year ranked tied for fifth in pass-blocking efficiency (97.9) and pressure percentage allowed (3.6%). The epitome of consistency, Schwartz has played 1,000 or more offensive snaps in every year of his seven-year NFL career and has yet to earn an overall grade below 72.6 or a pass-blocking grade below 73.8.”"

Creating dependable rushing lanes and providing a clean pocket as one of the best pass-pro tackles in the NFL, the offensive dominance of Kansas City following the signing of Schwartz is not a coincidence. By giving up only 16 sacks in 4,495 offensive snaps from 2016-2020 in Kansas City, Schwartz kept Chiefs QBs upright 99% of the time.

An incredibly consistent player, the one thing missing from Schwartz’s resume entering his time in Kansas City was playoff success, and boy did he find it. In five seasons with the Chiefs, Schwartz participated in seven games across four playoff runs, only allowing 1 sack. His best postseason run came in 2019 when he helped deliver a Super Bowl to Kansas City for the first time in 50 years. Going up against the likes of J.J. Watt, Jurrell Casey, Arik Armstead, Nick Bosa, and Dee Ford without a single sack given up stands as an all-time performance.

Simply put, Mitchell Schwartz was one of the best offensive linemen to ever play for the Kansas City Chiefs. Joining the rarified air of Brian Waters, Willie Roaf, Jim Tyrer, and Will Shields, Schwartz was an incredible offensive lineman for one of the great NFL franchises.

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