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Another team signing Justin Houston away from Chiefs would be very rare

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

When the Kansas City Chiefs decided to franchise tag Justin Houston, they used the non-exclusive tag, rather than the exclusive tag. The non-exclusive variety, which is typical among teams, means that other teams can offer Houston a contract and, if the Chiefs don't match, would give Kansas City two first round picks in exchange for Houston.

This idea of trading two first round picks for Houston is a fascinating one to talk about. But if history is any indication it's not something the Chiefs are likely to have to face in the coming months.

Historically, trading two first round picks for a franchise player just isn't something that teams do anymore. The last time I can find it happening is with Joey Galloway when the Cowboys gave the Seahawks two first round picks for the star receiver. That was in 2000. Before that I found Sean Gilbert (now running for the NFLPA job) sitting out an entire season before being traded on the tag. That was in the 1997.

Does that change your perspective on the chances of losing Houston? It's a possibility that someone like the Colts who have the cap space and are picking at the end of the first round would come in an offer up a big contract and be willing to give the Chiefs two first round picks for Houston ... but history says it's certainly not likely.

Players have been traded with the tag for less than two first round picks before (think Matt Cassel). Houston's case seems somewhat special because of who he is: 26-year old pass rusher coming off one of the greatest seasons in NFL history. The value of pass rushers has never been higher. From that standpoint, it's obviously more intriguing than someone like the Chiefs former QB on the tag. Still, I'm not going to start worrying about this until there is some smoke.

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