Jeff Allen, Tyvon Branch agree to free-agent contracts elsewhere

Dec. 27, 2015; Kansas City, MO; Chiefs left guard Jeff Allen (71) blocks Cleveland Browns defensive end Desmond Bryant (92) as quarterback Alex Smith (11) steps up in the pocket during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Dec. 27, 2015; Kansas City, MO; Chiefs left guard Jeff Allen (71) blocks Cleveland Browns defensive end Desmond Bryant (92) as quarterback Alex Smith (11) steps up in the pocket during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Departures are inevitable at the start of the league’s calendar year, as a team can’t keep everyone.

The Chiefs aren’t any different and dealt with that scenario by watching two contributors from 2015 bolt to other teams in the waning hours leading to the start of free agency Wednesday afternoon.

Guard/tackle Jeff Allen agreed to a four-year deal with the Houston Texans and safety Tyvon Branch agreed to a two-year deal with the Arizona Cardinals, sources confirmed with the ChiefsDigest.com and The Topeka Capital-Journal. The sources spoke on the condition of anonymity because neither team has announced the transactions.

The 26-year-old Allen originally joined the Chiefs as a second-round pick out of Illinois in the 2012 NFL Draft. He has 36 career starts and offers versatility to play guard and tackle.

Branch, who joined the Chiefs on a one-year deal in 2015 after spending seven seasons with the Oakland Raiders, played in all 16 regular-season games with one start.

The 29-year-old Branch totaled 40 tackles (33 solo) and had a knack for making big plays, recording an interception returned for a touchdown and a fumble returned for a touchdown.

The Chiefs saw offensive tackle Donald Stephenson agree to a deal with the Denver Broncos Tuesday night, while backup quarterback Chase Daniel agreed to a multiyear deal with the Philadelphia Eagles earlier Wednesday.

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Herbie Teope is the lead Chiefs beat writer for ChiefsDigest.com and The Topeka Capital-Journal. Use the contact page to reach him or find him on Twitter: @HerbieTeope.

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