Regardless of what occurs over the next five days, when all NFL teams must get down to the mandatory limit of 53 players, the Kansas City Chiefs have some concerns before they open the regular season against the San Diego Chargers in Kansas City on September 11th,
Among those concerns remain depth at linebacker and offensive line, that could derail the Chiefs, should they lose a competent starter at either position. With some of the NFL cuts already announced on Monday, a trio of veterans who found themselves on that list, could extend their careers in Kansas City.
LB Paul Kruger (Browns) – At 30 NFL years, the former Cleveland Browns linebacker was released on Monday. In 2015, he was anything but stellar recording only 2.5 sacks. A year earlier, he had 11 sacks. His stock has fallen mightily but his value should not. The Chiefs do not have a solid pass rusher opposite Tamba Hali ready to open the season. Justin Houston, though back on the sidelines in Kansas City working with the injured players, won’t be ready for some time. Dee Ford, has a less than zero chance to become a productive NFL player for the Chiefs. Already looking for work, Kruger's agent has scheduled two visits, one with the New Orleans Saints and the other with Chiefs.
If he arrives in Kansas City, Kruger is a solid fill in gap until Houston returns. On that basis alone, Kruger makes a lot of sense for the Chiefs. He’s a veteran who had a productive career in Baltimore before signing a mega riches deal with the Browns. And based on the turmoil surrounding the Browns organization in recent years, it’s not hard pressed to believe a proper NLF culture could garner the last of Kruger’s abilities – especially one with Super Bowl aspirations. However, the Chiefs sit in second position behind the Saints so it'll be interesting to see how this potential move pans out for Kansas City. At least, they're making the effort.
Geoff Schwartz (Lions) – Though he only played one year in Kansas City, Geoff Schwartz has remained a fan favorite. Partly, because he’s a lovable social media enthusiast and publisher author (Eat My Schwartz due in September), who still banters with Chiefs fans on a regular basis. The other is the fact his brother and co-author of their book, Mitchell Schwartz, is the Chiefs new starting right tackle.
Schwartz is nearing the twilight of his NFL career, and the Lions made this move based on money not ability. By being cut so early, Schwartz still has the chance to contribute on another NFL roster. In Kansas City, the Chiefs only possess Jah Reid and Zach Fulton as experienced back-ups to their starting offensive line. Adding Schwartz would give the Chiefs three back-ups that can play multiple position on the offensive line and that’s a rich commodity for any NFL roster.
Quinton Coples (Rams) – At 26, the former New York Jets top pick had hoped to resurrect his NFL career with the Los Angeles Rams. Yet despite a solid pair of pre-season games, he was cut on Monday. In the off-season, the Rams tried to convert Coples from defensive end to an interior defensive lineman. To his credit, he made that adjustment very well but the Rams felt, with so much depth at the defensive line position, he was expendable.
The Chiefs are stacked at defensive line but still are void another solid pass rushing option. With Coples in the fold in Kansas City, he would give the Chiefs added insurance and depth that would give Bob Sutton’s defense the best defensive line in the division. Granted it’s a stretch to think Coples can muster more than a handful of sacks in any NFL uniform, but he’s young enough and talented enough, for the Chiefs to at least considering signing him for one season.