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Chiefs are talking like Dee Ford will be back next season

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Editor’s note, March 14: The Kansas City Star’s Terez Paylor reported that it’s highly unlikely Dee Ford could pass a physical, which means his contract for 2018 will become guaranteed. He’s back.

Original article, March 1: “Chiefs are talking like Dee Ford will be back next season”

The Kansas City Chiefs picked up Dee Ford’s fifth-year option last summer which means they can have him under contract for the 2018 season ... if they want. The contract is only guaranteed for injury so if he can pass a physical — which, for the record, I don’t know if he can — the Chiefs could cut him before free agency next week and clear cap space.

It doesn’t appear that’s in their plans. Chiefs GM Brett Veach spoke from the NFL Combine where he talked like Dee Ford was coming back.

We’re anxious for Dee to get back and get in the mix. I spoke to Rick Burkholder, our trainer, a few weeks ago and we’ve been in an open dialogue. (Ford) continues to progress from the back. It was a couple of years ago he had that three or four-game span where he was on a tear and he started to turn the corner then had some setbacks. We believe in him and his ability to really make a difference when he’s fully healthy.”

He didn’t flat out say he would be back but it sounded like they were planning on it. I think most of us figured Ford would return anyway. The biggest reason being the Chiefs need to improve their pass rush. There is no pass rusher tree (thanks, Ned Yost) so without a first round pick I’m not sure how you think you can replace Ford’s talent ... when healthy. And that’s the thing. He wasn’t healthy last season.

He had 10 sacks two seasons ago when he was so the Chiefs would gladly take that Dee Ford back.