Bargain shopping in free agency part 1

It seems like yesterday that I watched the Seattle Seahawks drub the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl. It seems like yesterday because....well... it almost was . It is hard to believe that we are already talking about the next NFL season when the ink on the 2013 season has barely dried. More and more the NFL is becoming a 12 month sport.

And the talk of the day right now is free agency, which is going to start up in a week or two. AP has a post every day about this free agent and that free agent we should sign to this team . That is great if we had tens of millions of dollars to spend. However, like most of us the Chiefs have a budget they have to adhere to. We can't afford to go after Jarius Byrd or Emanuel Sanders or whatever high priced free agent fans may want. It is just the reality of our cap situation.

That is the bad news. The good news is two fold here. Number one, John Dorsey came from a successful organization that put more emphasis on the draft instead of free agency. The teams who win in this league overwhelmingly build through the draft and reserve free agency to fill a specific need or build depth. ''Well what about Seattle''? Yes, The Seahawks signed several free agents that helped their team win the Super Bowl. But almost all of the core players on that team were drafted by Seattle. Your number one priority as a football team should always be conquer the draft and let the other chips fall as they may. I think John Dorsey understands that.

Number two, Dorsey has found contributing players cheap in free agency. I am impressed with all the guys Dorsey brought in who helped us win games who didn't cost anything. Abdullah, Zombo, Schwartz, Sherman, Demps(the kick returner not the safety , Jordon all helped this team get to 11-5 and all were had for pennies on the dollar. Dorsey seems to be able to find bargains and that is critical in building a team. We all love a good deal. We all love finding that diamond in the rough at a garage sale or flea market or clearance rack. So I compiled a list of affordable, under the radar free agents who I think can improve the quality of depth ,or even start on this team



Leger Douzable DE/DT

Previous team : NYJ

2013 salary: 715,000

Games played /started: 16/0

Defensive line is no doubt becoming a hot topic in the AP community. Many (myself included) see it as our number one need in the off season. But this team also needs depth and versatility .We need guys who can play multiple positions on the D- line. We are also looking at losing Tyson Jackson , who was arguably our best run defender last season. Enter Leger Douzable. Douzable was a rotational player for a stacked Jets defensive line. He is known as a really good run defender and is a mirror of Jackson in many ways. But the plus side is he won't command the millions of dollars Jackson will. We could sign him for a one or two year deal for less than half it would cost to re sign Jackson. And he could take on the same role as Jackson until we groom a new guy to take over and Douzable moves to more of a backup role. He also has lined up as a DT and a DE in both 4-3 and 3-4 schemes, adding to his value



Dan Connor LB

2013 team : Carolina/NYG

2013 salary: 715,000

Games played/started : 6/0

Once upon a time in an NFL war room long ago , Dan Connor was looked at as a real promising LB prospect coming out of Penn State. But injuries have derailed what looked like the beginning to a long, good career. Connor has bounced around the NFL the last few years. And while he may no longer have the same speed and range he once had, he still can contribute as a backup and part time starter. We are set to lose Akeem Jordon in free agency. Other than DJ, we don't have much experience inside at LB. Connor gives us a veteran presence we need at the LB spot and gives some insurance if Nico Johnson isn't ready for a full time role. He would be a good depth signing whose injuries should limit what he can make on the open market. He also can play either the SILB or WILB position



Tyquan Underwood WR

Previous team :Tampa Bay

2013 salary: 715,000

Games played/started 12/0

First of all, we need to sign this guy based off the haircut alone. Anyone who can rock the high top fadeout is alright in my book. Aside from that, this team has issues at WR. We had one of the least productive WR cores in 2013. We need to shake things up and add several players to make life very uncomfortable for the likes of JR Hemmingway and AJ Jenkens on the bottom of the roster. It would behoove the Chiefs to add a few WR's to make some serious competition for the final three WR spots. Underwood is if anything an explosive player. He average over 18 YPC as the BUC's fourth WR last year. He had 440 yards and four TD's in twelve games last season. That isn't too shabby for a fourth receiver on a team with massive QB/coaching turmoil. Truth be told , Underwood has really never worked with an above average QB. He would be a good guy to bring into camp to see if he and Smith can develop a chemistry together. And he shouldn't cost much more than the league minimum to sign.



Eben Britton OL

2013 team: Chicago

2013 salary: 715,000

Games played/started : 13/4

No unit on this team is going to get more of a makeover than the O-line. Three offensive lineman are unrestricted free agents heading into the 2014 season. Not only are we poised to lose two starters, we also stand to lose our top swing guy. KC struck gold signing a relatively unknown lineman coming off a season on injured reserve. Could they do it again? Britton was a second round pick by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2009. He struggled with injuries until he was cut and signed by the Bears last season. He made four starts and played pretty well , grading out a +4.1 grade on PFF. Britton can play guard and tackle and could replace Schwartz as our top backup on the O line. It is unknown if Chicago is going to go after him in free agency. But his history of injuries should prevent him from getting big money/ long term deal .



Jarius Wynn DL

2013 team : Dallas

2013 salary: 715,000

games played /started :15/2

As I said earlier, The defensive line is a source of contention going into the 2014 season. Not only do we need improvement from our staring D ends, we also need more from our sub package guys. Allen Bailey has been handed our third down pass rushing role since he was drafted in 2011 without much competition. He has been largely ineffective coming of the bench on passing downs. Mike Capatano was brought in to help fill the role Bailey has struggled in and did a decent job considering the amount of snaps he played. But more competition would serve everyone right and push Bailey and Capatano in camp. Jarius Wynn would be a cheap option to bring in as a guy to provide depth and to compete with both Bailey and Capatano for playing time. He has a history with John Dorsey. He was selected by Green Bay in the 2009 draft.



Chris Owens CB

Previous team : Miami/Cleveland

2013 salary: 1,000,0000

Games played/started: 13/3

Who knew that going into the season we would miss Javier Arenas. The Chiefs decided to roll with Dunta Robinson going into the season as our third corner and it was a disaster . Robinson was benched halfway through the season and didn't see playing time again until the Colts game late in the year . He was the first cap casualty for the Chiefs in the offseason. This team needs more good corners. There are some rumors that Brandon Flowers could be cut or traded . Robinson was released. Cooper and Smith were shaky to say the least and Parker (my boy) and Commings are largely unknowns. We need more experienced corners on this team. Enter Chris Owens. Owens has graded out on PFF as one of the better slot corners the past two years. He could provide some veteran insurance if one of these guys struggle covering the slot . And what is better is unlike Capt Munnerlyn ,he won't cost a bomb to sign. He could be a very cost effective signing for this team for depth /posible third corner



Jeff Cumberland TE

2013 team : NYJ

2013 salary: 1,332,000

games played/starts: 15/12

This unit looks good on paper. Having said that, we said the exact same thing last year. This could be a position of need if Travis Kelce doesn't recover from knee surgery. Going into the 2013 season, we thought we had this group made. We had Tony Moeaki, Anthony Fasano and a high draft pick in Travis Kelce going into training camp. But slowly but surely injuries took a big tole on our TE core. Moeaki got hurt/cut, Kelce hurt his knee, and Fasano missed half of the season with injuries. We were stuck with Sean Mcgrath as our only TE for half of the season. McGrath filled in admirably and had a nice season. But we can't get caught with our pants down again. Jeff Cumberland could fill that role as a number two TE for this team and push McGrath for playing time. Cumberland is a good down the field receiver. He isn't a great blocker and probably will never be a number one guy. But he is good enough to play in two TE formations and give Alex another weapon over the middle. He won't command starter money on the open market.



Kurt Coleman FS

Previous team: Philadelphia

2013 salary: 613,342

Games played/started: 15/0

I don't need to remind anyone how bad our FS position was last year. The good news is the slate is clean. We have no FS on the roster. The bad news is ......we have NO free safety on the roster. We need not only to draft a young guy to develop, but we also need some veteran guys for depth and to man the fort while our rookie gets reps. Kurt Coleman could be a guy like what Abdullah was last year.That is, a veteran stopgap who can provide depth for cheap. Coleman would be a good guy to bring in on a one year , stopgap type of deal while also helping on special teams. Andy Reid drafted him in 2010 , so there is a familiarity there. He also would help out on special teams



Arthur Moats LB

2013 team : Buffalo

2013 salary: 686,260

games played/started: 16/11

The Chiefs found a diamond in the rough last year at SILB in Akeem Jordon. Jordon did a better than expected job manning the middle of the defense. But he is a UFA this year and we really don't know what we have in Nico Johnson. We should have a fallback option in case Nico can't handle the workload. Moats is a guy who not only could provide depth , but he is a guy who could start for this team like Jordon did last year. Moats is a better player than Jordon . And unlike Jordon, Moats offers versatility. He can play multiple LB spots . Bills fans rave about how good of a locker room guy he is. The Chiefs have a chance to fill a position of need with a starter who shouldn't cost very much. At worst Moats would be quality depth at ILB on a team with not much on the bench at that position

This is the first part in several free agent posts I will be putting up in the upcoming weeks. Don't expect a huge him to enter the fray via free agency this year. But expect that just like last year , there will be a signing of a guy you never heard of who will make a big play on Sunday

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.

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