When it seemed nearly impossible not long ago, Chris Jones and the Kansas City Chiefs have agreed to a new contract. The star defensive tackle has signed for four years and $80 million. There is also an opportunity for $5 million in possible incentives. Furthermore, this new deal will make Jones the third highest paid defensive tackle in the NFL (Aaron Donald, DeForest Buckner). He is also the second highest paid defender on the Chiefs, trailing only Frank Clark. Most importantly, Kansas City has retained their best defensive player for the future, during the prime of his career.
Let’s dive into the meat and potatoes of this deal, including how this got done in time. In addition, the Chiefs hit a home run once again.
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It appeared as though neither side was that close to coming to an agreement. However, the Patrick Mahomes megadeal was made about a week ago, which opened the door. Knowing what Mahomes’ cap hits were long term, and how cheap they were right now, helped manufacture the Jones deal.
Overall, the Chiefs always wanted Chris Jones. There just needed to be a sense of compromise from both parties involved. For the team, they made the player happy by essentially guaranteeing him around $20+ million per season. Jones did not receive a signing bonus with the contract, though. So, Kansas City was able to make this a manageable move with similar flexibility that the Mahomes contract offered them.
As we said before, the Chiefs have locked up their star defender while giving him top of the line money. Together, they can continue to chase for Super Bowl championships.
A Motivated Leader
While Chris Jones is known for being a disruptive pass rusher on the interior, his run defense was a question in the past. Triumphantly, he put all those run defending doubters to rest with his Super Bowl LIV appearance. Being able to stick with the speed and power of the San Francisco 49ers rushing attack, while moving sideline to sideline is no easy task. Jones was also a cog in reading and diagnosing run attempts by the San Francisco offense. While Damien Williams gets all the attention as Super Bowl MVP snub, Jones was really the top option who did not win the award.
Given the run defense questions and difficult injuries in the past, there is reason to believe Jones could freelance. Nonetheless, the Super Bowl game really lit a new fire in him that we had not seen as much of in the past. Having the ability to collapse the pocket as an interior pass rusher is an added bonus.
Veach Does It Again
General manager Brett Veach continues to be a wizard during roster construction. More importantly, he is showing the truth in manipulating the salary cap. With some creativity, Veach is becoming one of the top executives around the NFL. His aggressive style and never say die attitude in the front office is a luxury.
If you would have said the Chiefs would have retained 20 of 22 starters, restructured Sammy Watkins contract, brought back role players like Bashaud Breeland, Demarcus Robinson, Mike Pennel and extended both Mahomes and Chris Jones entering this offseason, I would have called you crazy. Nobody had a better offseason than the Kansas City Chiefs. Even better, it is coming off of a Super Bowl victory. Veach and the team realize how good their core is, while they can continue to ascend.
Building A Dynasty?
Not only did the Chiefs extend their two best players in as many weeks, but they have instilled trust in this young group that loves to play with each other. It was not easy to accomplish. However, securing Chris Jones helps to build the dynasty that Veach and Kansas City envision as a whole. Jones did not even bat an eye before talking about this, shortly after winning the Super Bowl.
“This is definitely the beginning of something. This is a dynasty. What we’re building, it’s exceptional.”
Since entering the league in 2016, Chris Jones is second in the NFL in sacks (33). He can do so much more and this team is set up to win a lot, both now and down the line. Considering the salary cap hoops and dynamics of this particular offseason, this is yet another big point in placing this team above many others across the league at this moment.
– Braden Holecek is the Kansas City Chiefs managing editor for Full Press Coverage. He covers the NFL. Like and follow on Follow @ebearcat9//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js Follow @FPC_Chiefs//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js and Facebook.