FanPost

Preserving Greatness: Dorsey's Next Challenge

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Four score and seven years ago, Hunt our founding father, brought forth to this city a new glory, conceived by Stram, and symbolizing the proposition that no men were created equal to the Kansas City Chiefs.

Okay, it hasn't really been four score and seven years since the Chiefs won a Super Bowl...it's been half that. 44 years. And while it is too soon to make any predictions about the outcome of this season, one thing is for sure: if we have any chance of playing for a Championship, we will get there on the backs of our defenders. This article is not going to argue the merits of Defense vs. Offense or attempt to prove that "defense wins championships." Instead, I'm going to operate on the understanding that our defense this year is special, and on the assumption that we want it to stay that way.

While there are no guarantees in the NFL, one could argue that the first step in preserving a great defense is to retain your play makers. I published a few comprehensive rosters before the draft to examine where the Chiefs may have some holes in their depth, not this year, but in years to come. I thought the bye week offered a great opportunity to revisit those depth charts with our revamped 2013 Chiefs squad. That is when I noticed that in terms of retention, there is a large discrepancy between the 2014 Chiefs Offense and the Defense. Let's take a look:

The Chiefs Offense:

OFFENSE

#

PLAYER

DR

?

AGE

CONTRACT

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

WR1

1

BOWE

1

*

29

$56 MIL

$4,000,000.00

$12,000,000.00

$14,000,000.00

$13,000,000.00

$13,000,000.00

UFA

2

HEMINGWAY

7

*

24

$405,000.00

$495,000.00

RFA

WRS

1

McCLUSTER

2

*

25

$5 MIL

$1,400,000.00

UFA

TE

1

FASANO

U

29

$16 MIL

$2,325,000.00

$4,925,000.00

$3,975,000.00

$4,775,000.00

UFA

2

McGRATH

U

25

$405,000.00

$495,000.00

$585,000.00

RFA

3

BROCK

U

27

$357,353.00

$495,000.00

$585,000.00

RFA

IR

KELCE

3

*

24

$463,826.00

$720,826.00

$850,826.00

$973,826.00

UFA

IR

MOEAKI

3

*

26

$1,494,662.00

UFA

QB

1

A. SMITH

1

29

$24 MIL

$8,500,000.00

$9,000,000.00

UFA

2

DANIEL

U

27

$10 MIL

$1,800,000.00

$3,400,000.00

$4,800,000.00

UFA

3

BRAY

U

*

21

$405,000.00

$495,000.00

$585,000.00

RFA

RT

1

FISHER

1

*

22

$22 MIL

$4,034,636.00

$5,043,295.00

$6,051,954.00

$7,060,613.00

UFA

2

SCHWARTZ

7

27

$700,000.00

UFA

RG

1

ASAMOAH

3

*

25

$1,551,030.00

UFA

C

1

HUDSON

2

*

24

$643,736.00

$803,104.00

UFA

2

KUSH

7

*

24

$436,279.00

$526,279.00

$616,279.00

$706,279.00

UFA

LG

1

ALLEN

2

*

23

$1,055,415.00

$1,266,498.00

$1,477,581.00

UFA

2

R. JOHNSON

U

24

$395,294.00

$570,000.00

UFA

LT

1

ALBERT

1

*

28

$10 MIL

$9,828,000.00

UFA

2

STEPHENSON

3

*

25

$664,375.00

$754,375.00

$844,375.00

UFA

FB

1

SHERMAN

5

24

$555,000.00

$645,000.00

UFA

RB

1

CHARLES

3

*

26

$28 MIL

$4,333,333.00

$4,833,333.00

$7,333,333.00

UFA

2

DAVIS

3

*

22

$531,504.00

$646,504.00

$736,504.00

$826,504.00

UFA

3

GRAY

6

*

23

$514,918.00

$604,918.00

$694,918.00

UFA

WR2

1

AVERY

2

29

$9 MIL

$1,800,000.00

$2,850,000.00

$3,900,000.00

UFA

2

JENKINS

1

24

$705,797.00

$1,021,594.00

$1,337,390.00

UFA

3

HALL

U

27

$555,000.00

RFA

AVG INFO

DR

AGE

RECEIVERS

$13,911,638.00

$23,002,420.00

$25,233,216.00

$18,748,826.00

$13,000,000.00

$0.00

2013 STARTERS

2.6

26.1

BACKFIELD

$16,639,755.00

$19,624,755.00

$14,149,755.00

$826,504.00

$0.00

$0.00

OVERALL

4.4

25.3

O-LINE

$19,308,765.00

$8,963,551.00

$8,990,189.00

$7,766,892.00

$0.00

$0.00

# Chief Drft Pcks

16

TOTAL

$49,860,158.00

$51,590,726.00

$48,373,160.00

$27,342,222.00

$13,000,000.00

$0.00

First, a few reminders about this Depth Chart:

  • The position, #, name, and age columns are self-explanatory
  • The DR column tells you which round each player was drafted in
  • The ? column has an asterisk if the player was drafted by the Chiefs (I count UDFAs that were first signed by KC as Chief draft picks)
  • The contract column lists the Total Value of any large Chief contracts (greater than $5 million)
  • The yearly columns list the Cap Hit for each player in each season
  • Note: The "totals" of the yearly cap hits are not equal to our "salary cap" -- for two reasons. First, this roster lists more than 53 people because it includes players on IR and any players that like to jump back and forth from the roster to the practice squad (McDougald was just removed because he signed with Tampa.) Second, the true salary cap is calculated from the top 51 salaries, not the whole team. We can use the totals listed, however, to see how much cash Dorsey has invested in each position.
  • From the totals we can see that Dorsey is already locked in to about $50 million dollars on offense for the next three seasons. With that cash, we see that if the 2014 season started tomorrow, the offense would not appear very different. Stephenson would replace Albert as a starting tackle and we would need a right guard. We would only lose McCluster and Hall at WR, and our QBs, RBs, and TEs would remain unchanged. All in all, the talent base is largely in tact, with a need to preserve or find a slot receiver and consider what the Chief's future at LT should look like. Now, let's look at the defense:

    The Chiefs Defense:

    DEFENSE

    PLAYER

    DR

    ?

    CONTRACT

    2013

    2014

    2015

    2016

    2017

    2018

    RCB

    1

    S. SMITH

    2

    26

    $16 MIL

    $3,000,000.00

    $5,735,000.00

    $7,535,000.00

    UFA

    2

    ROBINSON

    1

    31

    $14 MIL

    $2,750,000.00

    $5,350,000.00

    $5,700,000.00

    UFA

    3

    PARKER

    U

    26

    $555,000.00

    $645,000.00

    UFA

    SS

    1

    BERRY

    1

    *

    24

    $60 MIL

    $10,211,700.00

    $11,619,700.00

    $8,357,700.00

    UFA

    2

    DEMPS

    4

    28

    $555,000.00

    UFA

    ROLB

    1

    HALI

    1

    *

    29

    $58 MIL

    $15,500,000.00

    $11,500,000.00

    $12,000,000.00

    UFA

    2

    MOSES

    U

    24

    $480,000.00

    $570,000.00

    RFA

    RILB

    1

    D. JOHNSON

    1

    *

    30

    $36 MIL

    $3,500,000.00

    $4,250,000.00

    $5,250,000.00

    UFA

    2

    J.M. JOHNSON

    4

    24

    $480,000.00

    $570,000.00

    $660,000.00

    UFA

    RDE

    1

    DeVITO

    U

    29

    $13 MIL

    $2,300,000.00

    $4,900,000.00

    $5,400,000.00

    UFA

    2

    TORIBIO

    U

    28

    $555,000.00

    RFA

    NT

    1

    POE

    1

    *

    23

    $11 MIL

    $2,572,728.00

    $3,087,274.00

    $3,601,822.00

    UFA

    4

    HOWARD

    4

    24

    $480,000.00

    $570,000.00

    $660,000.00

    UFA

    DE

    1

    JACKSON

    1

    *

    27

    $22 MIL

    $7,200,000.00

    UFA

    2

    BAILEY

    3

    *

    24

    $718,986.00

    $808,986.00

    UFA

    3

    CATAPANO

    7

    *

    23

    $422,281.00

    $512,281.00

    $602,281.00

    $692,281.00

    UFA

    LILB

    1

    JORDAN

    U

    27

    $575,000.00

    UFA

    2

    N. JOHNSON

    4

    *

    23

    $526,500.00

    $616,500.00

    $706,500.00

    $796,500.00

    UFA

    LOLB

    1

    HOUSTON

    3

    *

    24

    $747,812.00

    $837,812.00

    UFA

    2

    ZOMBO

    U

    26

    $640,000.00

    UFA

    FS

    1

    LEWIS

    5

    *

    27

    $1,374,725.00

    UFA

    2

    ABDULLAH

    U

    28

    $555,000.00

    UFA

    3

    COMMINGS

    5

    *

    23

    $341,878.00

    $548,878.00

    $638,878.00

    $728,878.00

    UFA

    LCB

    1

    FLOWERS

    2

    *

    27

    $49 MIL

    $9,600,000.00

    $9,500,000.00

    $10,500,000.00

    $8,750,000.00

    UFA

    2

    COOPER

    7

    23

    $405,000.00

    $495,000.00

    $585,000.00

    $675,000.00

    UFA

    AVG INFO

    DR

    AGE

    SECONDARY

    $29,348,303.00

    $33,893,578.00

    $33,316,578.00

    $10,153,878.00

    $0.00

    $0.00

    2013 STARTERS

    3.2

    26.6

    LB

    $22,449,312.00

    $18,344,312.00

    $18,616,500.00

    $796,500.00

    $0.00

    $0.00

    OVERALL

    4.7

    25.9

    D-LINE

    $14,248,995.00

    $9,878,541.00

    $10,264,103.00

    $692,281.00

    $0.00

    $0.00

    # Chief Drft Pcks

    12

    TOTAL

    $66,046,610.00

    $62,116,431.00

    $62,197,181.00

    $11,642,659.00

    $0.00

    $0.00

    The first thing we notice is that our defensive unit is $16 million more expensive than our offense. In fact, the Chiefs have the most expensive defensive in the NFL. I guess you get what you pay for. The price does not drop off much from 2013 to 2014, but the talent does. We lose one starter on the D-Line in T-Jax, and his primary sub in Toribio. It remains to be seen whether Bailey and Catapano will be more than situational or sub-package players. We may see a higher dollar draft pick in this role next season.

    We also lose LB strength. Maybe Nico Johnson is ready to take over for Akeem Jordan, but maybe not. And are we happy with Frank Zombo and Dezman Moses as our primary sub pass rushers if something (knock on wood, throw salt) were to happen to Houston or Hali? I would guess we may draft/sign another pass rusher next year. And Speaking of Houston, realize that of the $62 million already spent on our 2014 defense, he's less than $1 million of that. This number will change. Expect a BIG payday for Houston next year which will push our defensive total North of $70 million! And that's all before we talk about the secondary.

    Our corner back situation looks good. With Smith fulfilling expectations and rookie standout Marcus Copper locked up for four years, the Chiefs don't need to spend extra cash here. Our safeties, however...yipes. We have only Berry and Commings on the roster for 2014, and Commings has yet to play a single snap in the NFL. Demps and Abduullah have been a real boon to the Chiefs both on D and on special teams. The great thing about 1-year "rent-a-vet" contracts? You can see what you're getting before you commit big money. The trade-off? If they perform well, their price just went up. I don't think we will have to break the bank to retain those guys (or Lewis if we so choose) but I think retaining them is important if we want to sustain this defense's performance level, and they will almost certainly command more than the league minimum we are paying them this year.

    Overall, just to keep the talent we currently have, we are looking at $75 to $78 million. If you think it would be cheaper to draft or sign other FA's, you are only half right. Realize that the guys we need to replace, with the exception of Tyson Jackson, are on very favorable contracts for the Chiefs this year. Dorsey truly has his work cut out for him.

    The Chiefs Special Teams:

    S. TEAMS

    PLAYER

    DR

    ?

    AGE

    CONTRACT

    2013

    2014

    2015

    2016

    2017

    2018

    P

    COLQUIT

    3

    *

    31

    $19 MIL

    $1,800,000.00

    $3,800,000.00

    $3,800,000.00

    $4,450,000.00

    $4,900,000.00

    K

    SUCCOP

    7

    *

    27

    $15 MIL

    $1,473,750.00

    $2,708,750.00

    $3,508,750.00

    $3,258,750.00

    UFA

    LS

    GAFFORD

    U

    30

    $565,000.00

    UFA

    ST TOTAL

    $3,838,750.00

    $6,508,750.00

    $7,308,750.00

    $7,708,750.00

    $4,900,000.00

    $0.00

    OVERALL TEAM AVG/TOTAL:

    4.6

    30

    25.8

    KC CHIEFS CAP TOTAL:

    $119,745,518.00

    $120,215,907.00

    $117,879,091.00

    $46,693,631.00

    $17,900,000.00

    $0.00

    Just to finish this off, I have included the last piece of the puzzle: special teams. While we have our ST skill positions locked up for the future, realize that their price tag goes up by $3 million in 2014 over this season. That's just one more difficulty Dorsey will have to overcome when finding money and cap space to keep our defense together.

    Some final parting thoughts:
  • For the first time since I started putting these together, the average age of our starting players is older than the overall average. We have shifted from "pure youth" with veteran back-ups to "seasoned players" with young depth. I think that's the right way to build.
  • The Chiefs have 30 draft picks on their roster, even after the huge churn of players this year with the regime change. Almost all of our starters are Chiefs picks with an average draft round of 2.6 for offensive starters and 3.2 on the defense. Say what you will about the past turmoil at 1 Arrowhead Drive, the Chiefs have been able to bring in some talent under all of the past few regimes.
  • The Chiefs have four "big ticket" players right now: Bowe, Berry, Hali, and Flowers. Will something have to give to re-sign Houston? Will Alex Smith be due a new paycheck next year, or do they hold off until 2015?
  • Dorsey has a tough road to haul ahead...

I hope you enjoyed this. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments.

Go CHIEFS! (And Go Chargers! At least for one week!)

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Arrowhead Pride

You must be a member of Arrowhead Pride to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Arrowhead Pride. You should read them.

Join Arrowhead Pride

You must be a member of Arrowhead Pride to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Arrowhead Pride. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker