Chiefs make splash with free-agent moves to address needs

  Print article

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Chiefs have been nothing short of active the first week of free agency before slowing down in recent days with just $135,675 remaining in available cap space.

Chiefs general manager John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid have attacked weaknesses, including the wide receiver position, offensive line and the secondary.

The Chiefs also made a commitment by bringing players from the previous season.

March 11, 2015; Kansas City, MO; Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, flanked by GM John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid, meets the media after signing with the Chiefs. Credit: Teope

March 11, 2015; Kansas City, MO; Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, flanked by GM John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid, meets the media after signing with the Chiefs. Credit: Teope

MACLIN BOLSTERS WIDE RECEIVER CORPS

The signing of unrestricted free agent Jeremy Maclin is the obvious headliner with the Chiefs showing Dwayne Bowe the door after eight seasons of service.

Maclin returns to the state of Missouri with a five-year, $55 million deal to play for his former Eagles coach, current Chiefs coach Andy Reid.

The Chiefs proved they were ready to move on from the 2014 touchdown-less wide receiver corps by releasing Donnie Avery and waiving A.J. Jenkins on Feb. 17. Bowe’s release was made official March 12 and cleared $5 million in cap space.

Reid and the Chiefs made a commitment to another familiar face in Jason Avant by officially re-signing the nine-year veteran to a one-year deal on March 13.

The Chiefs also tendered an exclusive right free-agent offer to wide receiver Junior Hemingway on March 7.

THE NEW GUARDS ARRIVE

The offensive line unit, especially at the guard position, will have a different look in 2015.

The Chiefs signed another former Eagle in free-agent right guard Paul Fanaika on March 12. Fanaika, who will receive $8.1 million over three years, has been with four organizations since being drafted by Reid in the seventh round of the 2009 NFL Draft.

He started in 30 games over the past two seasons with the Arizona Cardinals. He only had three career starts prior to his Arizona stint.

The Chiefs acquired two-time pro bowl left guard Ben Grubbs by way of a trade with the New Orleans Saints on March 12. The transaction had the Saints receiving the Chiefs’ fifth-round pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.

PARKER RETURNS

Defensive back Ron Parker, who was thought to be a goner once he reached free-agent status, ultimately signed a five-year, $30 million deal with the Chiefs on Monday.

The Chiefs signed unrestricted free agent safety Tyvon Branch on March 10 to a one-year deal, with $2 million guaranteed. The move provides insurance in the secondary with the uncertainty of Eric Berry’s battle with lymphoma.

OTHER TRANSACTIONS

• TE Anthony Fasano was released on Feb. 26; signed a free-agent deal with Tennessee.
• OLB Justin Houston was designated as a non-exclusive franchise player on March 2.
• LB Joe Mays was released on March 5.
• DL Vance Walker was released on March 6; signed a free-agent deal with Denver.
• TE Demetrius Harris was tended an exclusive-rights free-agent offer on March 6.
• LB Josh Martin was tendered an exclusive right free-agent offer on March 6.
• LB Dezman Moses re-signed a one-year deal on March 7.
• OLB Tamba Hali reworked his contract on March 8.
• DE Mike DeVito reworked his contract on March 9.
• LB Josh Mauga re-signed to a three-year, $8 million deal on March 9.
• WR Dwayne Bowe was released on March 12.
• LS James Winchester signed a two-year contract on March 12.
• TE Richard Gordon signed a one-year deal on March 13.
• S Kelcie McCray signed a two-year deal on March 13.

PLAYERS LOST TO FREE AGENCY

• C Rodney Hudson signed with Oakland.
• S Kurt Coleman signed with Carolina.

REMAINING FREE AGENTS FROM 2014

• LS Thomas Gafford
• T Ryan Harris
• OL Jeff Linkenbach
• G Mike McGlynn
• RB Joe McKnight
• CB Chris Owens
• DL Kevin Vickerson