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Arrowheadlines: Patrick Mahomes is a “national phenomenon”

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Chiefs headlines for Thursday, March 7.

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NFL: Combine Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The latest

Super agent Leigh Steinberg dishes on Mahomes mania: ‘Patrick is a national phenomenon’ | Kansas City Star

The NFL seems to be a sport, too, where players from smaller markets can become household names like Peyton Manning in Indianapolis.

It’s a national game and what you’ll find in a smaller market is that their passion tends to be much higher than in a city such as Los Angeles. The ‘buy rate’ for everything Mahomes is enormous. It’s like when we put a T-shirt out for Big Ben in Pittsburgh and sold more than 400,000. You get people who are much more passionate and much more focused in local markets, and then nationally we’re constructing a whole set of national endorsements.

Patrick is a national phenomenon. People are excited about him in Los Angeles and New York and all across the country.

Setting the Market for the NFL’s Five Most Interesting Free Agent Position Groups | The Ringer

Offensive Linemen

Like quarterback, offensive tackle is a spot where competence comes at a premium. Teams are willing to overpay for guys who merely allow their offenses to function. If Smith warrants a contract with an average annual value of over $13 million, then Brown, James, and Williams are going to get contracts that might shock some people.

That same philosophy extended to the interior of the offensive line. Rams guard Rodger Saffold and Broncos center Matt Paradis headline this group, but Chiefs center Mitch Morse, former first-round pick D.J. Fluker, and Steelers guard Ramon Foster (despite being 33 years old) should also garner interest.

NFL Free Agency 2019: Where will Landon Collins play next season? Five likely landing spots | CBS Sports

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs might be more desperate for an impact defensive back than the Colts, and that’s with Eric Berry already at one of the safety spots. Their issue is cap room. Kansas City is working to free up space by axing or auctioning some of its pass rushers, so they could find a way to get it done. If that’s the case, this might be the most ideal scenario: Collins has familiarity with coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, the Chiefs are on the verge of Super Bowl contention, and they reportedly love Collins’ game.

2019 Free Agency Profile: Mitch Morse | Pro Football Focus

Kansas City Chiefs’ Mitch Morse is a high-floor pass blocker but lacks high-end run-blocking ability. He’s earned 70.0-plus pass-blocking grades all four years of his career but has failed to finish above 70.0 in run-blocking grade in any of the four years.

Morse’s lackluster run blocking will push teams away, but any team in search of a pass-protecting center with years of high-floor production should jump at the opportunity to sign him.

The Biggest Questions Heading into 2019 NFL Free Agency | Bleacher Report

The Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans, Seattle Seahawks and Kansas City Chiefs used their tags on top pass-rushers Demarcus Lawrence, Jadeveon Clowney, Frank Clark and Dee Ford, respectively.

With so much open cap space around the league, a number of teams figure to pounce on any pass-rusher who becomes available. Given their needs and amount of cap room, the Indianapolis Colts, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders and Tennessee Titans make sense as buyers.

Texas CB Kris Boyd has history of success against Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes | Chiefs Wire

Boyd’s specialty, however, is press man coverage. He likes the physicality of it, and he believes that suits the style of the NFL today. “I know this league is like a bump-and-run league,” Boyd said of the NFL. “You’ve got to get physical and hands-on. Hopefully I can deliver what they want.”

Boyd has a history that already delivers on what many teams want to find out in 2019: “How do you stop Mahomes?” He has perhaps more success than any other player defending against the Chiefs QB, from the Friday night lights of high school football in Texas all the way to senior night in Lubbock. Teams would be wise to draft him this April with the goal of continuing that success at the next level.

Around the league

Denver Broncos release safety Darian Stewart | NFL

The Denver Broncos released veteran strong safety Darian Stewart on Wednesday, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported.

Stewart, who turns 31 in August, also took to social media to thank the Broncos fans for their support over the past four seasons, saying in an Instagram post that he “still had a lot of football left” in him.

Browns release veteran linebacker Jamie Collins | NFL

Jamie Collins’ tenure in Cleveland is over after 30 games.

The Cleveland Browns released the outside linebacker on Wednesday, the team announced.

”We want to thank Jamie for his contributions to the Cleveland Browns,” general manager John Dorsey said in a statement. “These types of decisions are never easy. Jamie is a respected veteran player in this league and we wish him the best as he continues his career.”

Sources: Teams told AB trade likely by Friday | ESPN

Teams that have spoken to the Pittsburgh Steelers about a potential Antonio Brown trade have been told that a deal is expected to be in place by Friday, league sources tell ESPN.

Any trade that is agreed upon can’t be officially announced until next Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET, when the 2019 league year begins. It is likely Brown will want a restructured contract from any team that acquires him. Brown has three years remaining on his deal, with scheduled base salaries of $12.625 million in 2019, $11.3 million in 2020 and $12.5 million in 2021, but he has no guaranteed money remaining on the contract.

Raiders deal to stay in Oakland could apparently fall apart over one ‘significant’ issue | CBS Sports

“We still have one rather significant open issue and I will be going back to the Raiders to discuss that with them and hopefully we’ll be able to resolve it, and if we can’t, there’s a possibility that we won’t have a deal,” McKibben said Wednesday.

Although McKibben wouldn’t offer any details on the ‘significant’ issue, the San Francisco Chronicle has reported that the big hang up has something to do with the Raiders training facility in Alameda and the fact that they only pay $525,000 in rent. One thing that’s not an issue is the pending lawsuit that the city has filed against the team.

Report: Multiple Teams Inquired About Cardinals QB Josh Rosen’s Availability at Combine | Sports Illustrated

Multiple teams inquired about Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen’s availability at the 2019 NFL combine last week, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Arizona reportedly did not indicate to any interested teams that it is willing to move on from Rosen at this time, despite rumors that they could draft Oklahoma QB Kyler Murray with their No. 1 pick.

Will NFL teams loan QBs and other players to AAF? Informal talks ongoing | USA Today

Alliance of American Football co-founder and head of football Bill Polian said Wednesday there have been informal discussions about the possibility of NFL teams loaning younger players to AAF teams in the future.

“The talk is ramping up – I’ll say that,” Polian said.

Polian there have been no formal talks, “but lots of NFL people have bandied about that thought with lots of us.”

In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride

La Canfora: Someone is going to “hit home run” by signing Spencer Ware

CBS Sports NFL analyst Jason La Canfora expects an NFL team to hit a “home run” with Kansas City Chiefs unrestricted free agent-to-be Spencer Ware, as he explains in his latest notes. Ware is due to become a UFA when the league year begins on March 13.

LA CANFORA: Someone is going to hit a home run with Spencer Ware. He is being overlooked by the media, but is dynamic with the ball in his hands and catches everything thrown to him. His market will out-price the Chiefs.

Proper reactions to all the rumors you’ve heard during peak Chiefs speculation season

Free Agency

Rumor 7: The Chiefs are looking for defensive ends that fit Steve Spagnuolo’s defensive scheme and possess highly coveted length (and other athletic) thresholds.

Whether or not we believe in the fit of Houston and Ford in Spagnuolo’s system, the narrative seems to be that the Chiefs’ top edge rushers aren’t ideal fits.

To fix that issue, the Chiefs attack an above-average starting defensive end in free agency that fits a more traditional body type for the position — a longer, bigger body type that is also an effective pass rusher off the edge.

Players that fit this general profile include Trey Flowers, Preston Smith, Za’Darius Smith, Ezekiel Ansah and Cameron Wake.

Dixon’s Arrowhead Pride mailbag: Landon Collins, the salary cap, and Brett Veach’s plan

Are the Chiefs in talks for Landon Collins? Please say yes.

— Matt

Unfortunately, Collins won’t actually become a free agent until his contract expires at the end of the league year on March 13, and no one can legally negotiate with him while he is still under contract with the Giants. So until the so-called legal tampering period begins on March 11, noteam will be in talks with Collins — that is, unless they want to run the risk of being disciplined by the NFL.

Now... if the Giants release Collins outright before March 11, all bets will be off. Collins’ agent will be answering a lot of phone calls! But if it hasn’t happened by now, it’s not likely to happen.

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