The Kansas City Chiefs added a familiar face to the secondary with the report that safety Ron Parker had signed a new five-year, $30 million contract to return to the team, per Ian Rapoport.
Safety Ron Parker is headed back to the #Chiefs. He’ll sign a 5-year, $30M deal, source said— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 14, 2015
According to agents Justin and Joel Turner, Ron Parker's deal w/KC is $25M/5 years and a max of $30M w/ $5M signing bonus and $8M guaranteed— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 14, 2015
Parker, who will turn 28-years-old in August, was a first-year starter in 2014 for the Chiefs, who should be credited with claiming Parker off the waiver wire by John Dorsey before the 2013 regular season. Since that time, Parker has not only shone potential enough to make the team, but climbed the depth chart to start 15 games for KC last year. This offseason, given the dearth of appealing options on the market, Parker found plenty of suitors, including the Ravens and Bears. However, Dorsey clearly wanted to keep his man.
The return of Parker is good for a number of reasons. Having a familiar face on defense maintains continuity and chemistry, and clearly the coaching staff and front office are on the same page in believing that Parker's best days are ahead of him. He's responded well to continued playing time and trust from his coaches, so maybe Parker develops into one of the game's finer safeties. His ability to play corner also gives Bob Sutton some flexibility.
That said, there's significant question marks here as well. The finances are interesting, given that most of the talk this offseason was about the Chiefs lack of room to do much at all. The team also already added Tyvon Branch on a nice, cheap one-year deal earlier in free agency. And of course, Justin Houston also sits waiting for his time to get paid while the Chiefs add new players and reward older ones.
Parker's re-signing also likely says a lot about the team's belief that Eric Berry will suit up at all in the near future. Berry is an impact player and everyone in Chiefs nation is certainly rooting for his complete recovery off and on the field, but Dorsey is clearly spending money as if he's not counting on anything in 2015. That likely means Parker, Branch and Husain Abdullah will be your safety rotation in 2015.
Parker had 94 combined tackles last season, 12 passes defended, one sack, one forced fumble and one interception. He has appeared in all 32 regular season games since joining the Chiefs.