Orlando Brown Jr. will play Chiefs season on franchise tag, per report
By Matt Conner
After well over a year of wishing and hoping for the Kansas City Chiefs to sign him to a long-term contract extension, offensive lineman Orlando Brown Jr. is going to have to wait for several more months before another chance at the security he desires. Per NFL reporter Ian Rapoport, Brown and the Chiefs were unable to reach a long-term contract agreement before the NFL’s deadline on July 15, which means Brown will play out the 2022 season under the terms dictated by the franchise tag.
Brown’s contractual wishes actually go back much farther than even last spring—back to his days with the Baltimore Ravens, where he was pretty vocal about his hopes for long-term security at the left tackle position. In those days, Baltimore’s Ronnie Stanley was standing in the way of both the position and the financial hopes, which opened the door for Kansas City to make a move.
The Kansas City Chiefs were unable to reach an agreement on a long-term contract with Orlando Brown Jr. by the NFL’s deadline of July 15.
The Chiefs have stated all along that an extension was in the works for Brown, but they still let him play out his first season with the team on a rookie deal. Then, to start the offseason, the Chiefs placed the franchise tag on him, which maintained control of Brown for the upcoming season at a much higher cost of $16.6 million. Still that amount is less than what the Chiefs would have to pay per season to have Brown on a long-term deal, and it keeps him motivated in the interim—in case that’s somehow an issue for Brown.
Brown’s presence on the left side for the Chiefs gives them an imposing blocker for Patrick Mahomes whose size and strength neutralize the NFL’s best power rushes. He made a Pro Bowl in his first year with the team, and it was his third Pro Bowl appearance overall after also reaching it twice with the Ravens. Brown is also very reliable and has played in 16 games every season since his arrival in the NFL. Still, the Chiefs have been reticent to allow Brown to reset the market at his position and were apparently resolute in that resolve.
While the Chiefs have the interior locked up for years, the Chiefs will hope the coming season can answer long-term questions at both bookend roles. At right tackle. can Darian Kinnard or Lucas Niang claim a starting spot from Andrew Wylie? On the left side, can the Chiefs see enough in Brown to want to offer him a long-term deal? Even more, will this form some bad blood between both sides?