Our pals over at the Chiefs Wire pointed out that the Chiefs have about a month to decide on Dee Ford’s fifth year option. Ford is already under contract for the 2017 season but the Chiefs need to decide by May 3 of this year whether to pick up his fifth-year option for the 2018 season.
My take: Yes, they should pick it up.
Based on last year’s numbers I could ballpark it at around $10 million (give or take a million or two) but they should still pick it up because it’s only guaranteed for injury. That means the Chiefs can decide to pick it up now and then before the 2018 league year they can still cut him if they want.
The only risk is that Ford would suffer an injury that would prevent him from passing a physical in March 2018. It’s a risk but an unlikely one.
By the 2018 season, Tamba Hali will likely be gone, Justin Houston another year older and the Chiefs will need assurances that they’ll have another pass rusher in the fold. If the Chiefs draft a first round pass rusher this year, they can still pick up Ford’s option and choose to cut or release him after the season.
We had this same discussion with Eric Fisher last year when I thought the best bet for him was to get an extension. I don’t think an extension is currently the answer here. It could be if Ford puts up a solid season in 2017 but right now there’s not enough information on him to commit to him too long-term.
So, yes, the Chiefs should pick it up to keep their options open.