NFL teams can extend players after their third year. Cornerback L’Jarius Sneed is currently in his third NFL season, and the Chiefs should extend him as soon as possible.
Sneed is clearly Kansas City’s top cornerback, especially after Charvarius Ward departed in free agency. He is still growing as a pass defender, especially against elite competition. But, on the open market, Sneed would likely command a hefty payday for his coverage alone. Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo uses Sneed for more than coverage, though. He is an oversized slot corner, able to rush the passer and is a plus-run defender.
Sneed has recorded at least one sack in every season and currently has three sacks in 2022. That is tied with All-Pro defensive tackle Chris Jones for the team lead. Plus, Sneed is second on the team with 40 combined tackles and leads the team with three forced fumbles. He may not be a lockdown corner, but Sneed is a key cog in the Chiefs’ defensive machine.
Cornerback is a hard position to fill via free agency. If the Chiefs need a boundary corner, possibly to replace Rashad Fenton after 2022, those are easier to find. A jack-of-all-trades slot corner is not as easy to replace. Sneed shouldn’t be handed a blank check, but Veach has to realize Sneed’s value to this team.