Good morning! Today's Kansas City Chiefs news? Salary cap, free agents, and Mardi Gras. Enjoy.
With more than $37 million of available salary-cap room, the Chiefs have the ability to re-sign both Dwayne Bowe and Brandon Carr, their top potential unrestricted free agents. They could also sign Peyton Manning and any number of other players who might come available when free agency begins on March 13.
General manager Scott Pioli didn't indicate whether the Chiefs would do all or any of that. But he did say the Chiefs planned to be active in free agency.
Chiefs Have $37 Million Of Salary Cap Room from KC Star
Insiders say there just aren't many owners up to the task. Bill Parcells used to tell friends he was only competing against eight teams because that's how many owners understood this.
When asked for a more current number, one personnel man pointed out that only three teams have won the AFC the last nine years and told me to "do the math." Another was more succinct.
"Five or six," he says.
Hunt is not among them, instead standing in a fascinating place.
The NFL has yet to set a team salary cap for 2012, but teams are expecting it to be about the same as last year: $120,375,000. The Chiefs also have $24,014,337 they didn't use against their 2011 cap that they can use in 2012. So the Chiefs' adjusted salary cap for 2012 is $144,389,337.
Subtracting total salary cap obligations of $107,009,195 (explained below), that leaves the Chiefs with $37,380,142 of available cap room.
Chiefs 2012 Salary Cap Breakdown from KC Star
NFL free agency begins Tuesday, March 13th at 3:00 PM (CST). With the Chiefs looking to improve depth and competition across their roster, KCChiefs.com will preview 30 potential free agents in the 30 days leading up to the start of free agency. Up today is Oakland Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell.
30 FAs In 30 Days: Jason Campbell from The Mothership
A handful of teams showed interest in McCarthy after the season. He chose Kansas City because he liked head coach Romeo Crennel and his defensive system.
Crennel, the former Browns head coach, served as K.C.'s interim head coach for the final three games after Todd Haley was fired. Crennel was promoted to permanent head coach after the season.
"His track record speaks for itself; he's been one of the best defensive coaches in the NFL for a long time," McCarthy said of Crennel.
Mooney Graduate McCarthy Excited For Chiefs Chance from The Youngstown Vindicator
Pete Prisco recently posted a column at CBS Sports linking one key free agent with each team, and Kansas City Chiefs fans will love the sound of Paul Soliai coming to Arrowhead. Prisco says the Chiefs have a major need at defensive tackle and that the former Miami Dolphins anchor would help in a major way.
Prisco summarizes, "They need a run stuffer in the middle of their defense. Soliai would bring that to a unit that needs it."
Paul Soliai Would Make Major Difference For Kansas City Chiefs Defensive Front from SB Nation Kansas City
She added that her son and his friends had been particularly excited to see football star Jamaal Charles. The Port Arthur native, now a running back for the Kansas City Chiefs, brought a bit of star quality to the event.
"That was a highlight," Hughes said.
Mardi Gras Southeast Texas Goes On Despite Rain from The Beaumont Enterprise
Chiefs: They did it with Joe Montana two decades ago, and there's pressure to upgrade the quarterback position in Kansas City. The Chiefs have done a better job rebuilding over the last two years, and if they think they're an elite quarterback shy of competing in the playoffs, they should make a run at Manning.
Crennel said that in the days before the 2004 Super Bowl, he had begun to think he'd never get a head coaching shot. So he set his mind on being the best coordinator he could.
It was the same when he returned to coaching two years ago with the Chiefs: He did everything he could to be a superior defensive coordinator.
Now that he has gotten his second chance as a head coach, he feels better prepared.
Ex-Patriot Romeo Crennel Earned His Second Chance from The Boston Globe
Brandon Carr, CB, Kansas City: Carr is intriguing because he's an unrestricted free agent at exactly the same time as the Chiefs' best receiver, Dwayne Bowe. So general manager Scott Pioli may have to decide to franchise his top target on offense or a 25-year-old cornerback who has good size (6-feet, 207 pounds) and reliable man coverage skills. The Chiefs may not re-sign both despite having as much salary cap space as any team in the NFL. Cornerbacks with Carr's potential tend to attract lots of money on the open market, and Kansas City owner Clark Hunt is far too cheap to compete in that kind of bidding war.
Free Agents Who Will Shape Next Season from ESPN