As soon as news broke that the Cleveland Browns had released wide receiver Greg Little, the list of potential destinations came up. The Kansas City Chiefs, of course, were among them.
Even after a loaded NFL Draft that featured more quality wide receivers than most classes, the Chiefs, Browns, New York Jets and Carolina Panthers are among the franchises with holes still to fill at wideout. It's not surprising, then, that every new free agent receiver is likely going to be mentioned in conjunction with one of these potential destinations.
That said, Little's reputation with some is likely greater than it should be. That's what you get when you only think of second-round-pick-in-2011-Greg instead of cinder-block-hands-and-zero-awareness-Greg.
If a case is to be made for bringing Greg Little to camp, it's likely going to include his age (he's only 24), his potential (as a second round pick), and the fact that Cleveland is hardly a place where offensive potential can be reached. That last one holds water, since Cleveland has been churning through coaches (and consequently offensive coordinators) and quarterbacks year after year (and sometimes more than one per year).
It's nice to think that the Chiefs could add a 24-year-old receiver with 41 starts of NFL experience and an average of just over 50 catches per season. It's also an incomplete picture.
Just remember, this is the Browns who dumped Little -- the same team that is likely to lose Josh Gordon for a significant period of time, lose free agent signee Nate Burleson to injury and now features Andrew Hawkins as its best option for new quarterback Johnny Manziel. The Browns just signed Miles Austin and Earl Bennett on Thursday and released Little on Friday. And Little was only on the hook for just over $1 million on a team with cap room. Clearly he wasn't wanted.
The reason the Browns likely didn't want to see if their investment would turn out under a new regime is because they'd seen enough drops. Pro Football Focus' Pete Damilatis had some great post-release tweets:
Greg Little has a -28.1 @PFF grade in his 3 NFL seasons. No other WR was worse than -17.4 in that span.— Pete Damilatis (@PFF_Pete) May 16, 2014
Greg Little dropped 16.7% of his catchable targets since 2011, the worst rate of any WR with 200+ targets. Can't blame his QBs.— Pete Damilatis (@PFF_Pete) May 16, 2014
Greg Little ran the 2nd-most routes in the NFL last season. 102 players had more receiving yds.— Pete Damilatis (@PFF_Pete) May 16, 2014
It's clear that that Chiefs are interested in adding someone at wide receiver if the fit is good and the price is right. Emmanuel Sanders' saga showed us that much. However they aren't going to reach for it, as the NFL Draft also showed. The Chiefs are content to be choosy when it comes to another offensive addition, and given Little's penchant for distracted play and frustration production, it'd be very surprising if he was the kind of player the Chiefs would actually bring in.
That said, stranger things have happened.