Terry Throws A Monkey Wrench In OL Plans

Everything was going so well in Kansas City this offseason.

Other than a problem with Jared Allen's contract, the Chiefs had been enjoying a relatively smooth transition over the last few months. Free agents were signed with little hassle, nobody got spit on and there were no off-the-field incidents.

Until now.

On Tuesday, Fox 5 out of Atlanta reported that Chiefs' right tackle Chris Terry failed to show up for a court date. Now, a warrant is out for his arrest.

And this isn't a speeding ticket or other relatively minor charge. It's related to domestic violence, as an Atlanta woman (Terry's ex-girlfriend) has charged Terry with hitting her in the face and pouring a beer over her.

This is nothing new for Terry, of course. In July of 2002 he was charged over a domestic incident involving his wife, who he allegedly slammed up against a wall. The Carolina Panthers eventually released him, the Seattle Seahawks picked him up and, you guessed it, he got into trouble again. Terry was suspended for the entire 2005 season before joining the Chiefs last year.

Even worse, Terry apparently hasn't learned his lesson. After the initial incident in 2002, he failed to show up for his court date. That's right, the exact same thing that happened on Tuesday.

Terry's lawyer claims that the allegations against his client are false, and that the eight-year veteran was attempting to postpone the court date.

Why? If Terry is so innocent, why not get this taken care of as soon as possible? Now he's just created another problem for himself by repeating his past.

He's also potentially created a major problem for the Chiefs, who were counting on him to play right tackle next season. If Terry is suspended for any length of time in 2006, the Chiefs may have to move John Welbourn from guard back to tackle, where he's already proved he's ill-suited to perform.

If Terry gets suspended, it creates a nasty domino effect on KC's offensive line. Welbourn is the odds-on-favorite to replace the retired Will Shields. If he can't play right guard, the position suddenly becomes a huge question mark. That affects KC's draft, which might mean they have to pass up available talent at other positions of need, like wide receiver, defensive tackle and cornerback.

And given the way that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has recently cracked down on off-the-field incidents (starting with Pacman Jones and Chris Henry), who knows what could be coming Terry's way, especially since he's a repeat offender. A player doesn't even have to be convicted of a crime for Goodell to hand down a penalty.

If Terry's suspended for another year the Chiefs will surely dump him, and the problem gets even worse.

Things were looking up. After a season of horrid play from their offensive tackles in 2006, the Chiefs looked to enjoy some sort of stability from free agent left tackle Damion McIntosh and Terry in 2007.

With a young quarterback in Brodie Croyle potentially starting this season, pass protection issues are paramount. Problems at right tackle won't help. With the way the Chiefs have handled the position over the last three seasons (Welbourn, Jordan Black and Kevin Sampson were all failures), you'd think John Tait put some kind of Mormon curse on the whole deal when he left in 2003.

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