CHICAGO, IL - DECEMBER 04: Dwayne Bowe #82 of the Kansas City Chiefs catches a pass in front of Charles Tillman #33 of the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on December 4, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Chiefs defeated the Bears 10-3. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
It's an interesting weekend for the Kansas City Chiefs. Dwayne Bowe has to sign a contract by July 15 or else play out the rest of the 2012 NFL season under the franchise tag. That amount is $9,521,000, which is certainly nothing to sneeze at. It's a large amount of money for one of the best wide receivers in the game, so the concern this weekend isn't at all about the Chiefs' present. The offense in 2012 should be much, much greater than it was last season.
The question is about the future and what this means for Dwayne Bowe's long-term chance of staying with the team. This is also about how well the Chiefs take care of their own. Brandon Carr was a homegrown starter who gave four years to the team starting from day one after being drafted in the fifth round, but he walked to the Dallas Cowboys for a total of $50 million this offseason. Others like Brandon Flowers and Tamba Hali have earned extensions to likely stay Chiefs for life.
Is Bowe the sort of talent that Scott Pioli will want to keep around? That's the question everyone wants to know. The debates for and against such a deal have been made several times including on AP, so there's no need to continue the debate here. Instead, it's important to notice just how little movement there is around Arrowhead. Actually, there is nothing at all.
No rumors to speak of have been issued on either side. After the team issued a release saying the team wanted to franchise Bowe, the team hasn't said a word about the issue. Bowe has left business to be conducted within the proper channels. He'll be at training camp. That much is clear. Outside of that, there's no prognosis at all.
The reason that's important is that everyone else has a rumor of some kind. Matt Forte has openly talked about wanting to get a deal to get done for once with the Bears. Tyvon Branch actually signed his deal with the Raiders. While it doesn't appear that Anthony Spencer will get a new deal with the Cowboys, his agent is at least acknowledging the situation publicly.
As for Bowe? There's no word at all. No acknowledgement of any deadline. No worries displayed. No hopes expressed. If a long-term deal was being put into place, then perhaps the silence is an implication that the parties involved are extremely busy and there's no need to talk about something that will have a press release of its own timing.
Then again, it could be read that there's simply nothing to talk about. Perhaps Pioli is making his statement that he's glad to have Bowe play for the Chiefs in '12 and he'll address the issue after watching the offense for another year.
What is clear is that there's less noise at Arrowhead than any other franchise dealing with a franchise player. The silent treatment is just how Pioli works, and there's no way of knowing what's coming until the deadline either passes or the team makes an announcement.