Donald Stephenson is scheduled to be a free agent in March. Based on the Kansas City Chiefs handling of previous free agents on the offensive line, many of us are expecting Stephenson to leave in free agency and sign elsewhere. It would appear that Stephenson is bracing for this as well.
In a now deleted tweet, Stephenson appeared to be saying goodbye to Kansas City. Note the "Been a hell of a ride KC" tweet.
A local news station tweeted it before it was deleted this morning. Nothing will happen until free agency on March 9 but the writing is on the wall even without that tweet. The Chiefs have let lineman after lineman hit free agency without being re-signed. Stephenson's exit (if it comes) would follow Branden Albert, Jon Asamoah, Geoff Schwartz and Rodney Hudson, who all left for other teams in free agency.
There is still plenty of upside with Stephenson. He's only 27 years old, plays a premium position and has flashed potential before. I will not be surprised at all when he turns things around. I've wondered if a short-term deal now is in his best interest. Prove he can play and then hit the market again for a payday.
As for the Chiefs, they do need a tackle in addition to Eric Fisher. It's one of their top three needs. If it's not addressed in free agency, you gotta think it's a priority in the draft.