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Arrowheadlines: The Chiefs expect to lose Austin Reiter in free agency

Chiefs headlines for Friday, March 12

NFL: AFC Divisional Round-Houston Texans at Kansas City Chiefs Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The latest

Report: Chiefs starting center Austin Reiter expected to land elsewhere in free agency | Chiefs Wire

Reiter has been the starter in Kansas City for the past two seasons after being picked up on waivers from the Cleveland Browns ahead of the 2018 season. He worked his way up to a starting gig in 2019 and never surrendered the job, though he did miss a few games with a knee injury in 2020.

Top 101 NFL free agents of 2021: Mitchell Schwartz, Eric Fisher among 50 best | NFL.com

44 - Eric Fisher

OT · Age: 30

The Chiefs needed to save cap space, and Fisher blew out his Achilles tendon in January. The injury came toward the end of one of Fisher’s better seasons, so some team may sign him to a multi-year deal with 2022 and ‘23 in mind.

2021 AFC free agency matchmaking: Lamar Jackson gets new weapon, Dolphins upgrade at RB, Patriots add TE | CBS Sports

Kansas City Chiefs - LB Jayon Brown

The Chiefs could stand to upgrade at linebacker and adding a versatile defender at that spot could help this defense take their play to the next level. Brown is effective when it comes to blitzing and then also in pass coverage, and has lined up in several different spots for the Titans over the past three seasons.

Eric Bieniemy Lived in Hotel During 2020 Season Due to COVID-19 Concerns | SI

Bieniemy detailed his difficult 2020 in a story by Sports Illustrated’s Jenny Vrentas on Thursday. He said he lived in a hotel from July through Super Bowl LV, doing so in order to isolate himself from his wife, Mia, and their two sons. Bieniemy’s older son, Eric III, has cerebral palsy and respiratory issues, making him a high-risk candidate for contracting COVID-19. With his son’s health at the forefront of his mind, Bieniemy made the sacrifice to leave those he loves most.

“It’s been this way for the past six months,” Bieniemy said before Super Bowl LV. “It’s been a challenge.”

Bieniemy said he stayed in a hotel for six nights a week during the season. He returned home each Friday night and wore two masks. He also slept in the basement away from his family. Hopefully, circumstances can change for Bieniemy and his family ahead of the 2021 season.

Every NFL team’s greatest free agent signing: Tom Brady, Tony Romo, Deion Sanders, headline all-time list | CBS Sports

Kansas City Chiefs — QB Len Dawson

The Chiefs have a long history of successful free agent acquisitions that include Tyrann Mathieu (2019), Marcus Allen (1993), Emmitt Thomas (1966), and Priest Holmes (2001). But the top spot goes to Dawson, who attempted just 45 passes during his first five NFL seasons. After being a backup in Pittsburgh and Cleveland, Dawson signed with the AFL’s Texans (re-named the Chiefs the following season) in 1962. Dawson won league MVP that year while leading Kansas City to its first of three AFL titles. Dawson, who led the NFL in completion percentage seven times, led the Chiefs to victory in Super Bowl IV, the last game played before the AFL-NFL merger. Dawson was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1987.

NFL Mock Draft 3.0: Could We See QBs Go One-Two-Three? | The Ringer

TYSON CAMPBELL

With Bashaud Breeland slated for free agency, the Chiefs may be looking to bolster their cornerback spot. Campbell has elite tools and ideal size, and while his ball production was lacking at Georgia, he plays sticky coverage. Along with Tyrann Mathieu, Juan Thornhill, Charvarius Ward (who is a restricted free agent), and L’Jarius Sneed, Campbell would help give the Chiefs a very solid nucleus in the secondary.

Ranking the QB situations of all 32 NFL teams | YardBarker

1. Kansas City Chiefs

Patrick Mahomes’ cap number skyrockets from $5 million to $25 million ahead of next season, increasing the Chiefs’ degree of difficulty. But no team has a greater head-start. Although Kansas City’s O-line crumbled in Tampa, Mahomes will have his team perched as Super Bowl favorites again soon. His 114 TD passes dwarf any other QB’s total through three seasons, and no quarterback can match his MVP-Super Bowl MVP-Super Bowl qualifier achievement ledger in that time. With Mahomes and Andy Reid committed long-term, the Chiefs are better positioned than anyone in the most important roles. Playoff hero Chad Henne: also due back.

Around the NFL

Houston Texans coach David Culley reaffirms commitment to Deshaun Watson: ‘He is our quarterback’ | ESPN

“We are very committed to Deshaun as our quarterback,” Culley said. “He is our quarterback. He’s the only guy we got under contract at this time, right now.”

Watson requested a trade less than six months after signing a four-year, $156 million contract extension that goes through the 2025 season. Watson’s trade request came after the quarterback was unhappy with the process used by the team to hire general manager Nick Caserio in January.

LB Matt Milano agrees to re-sign with Bills on four-year pact worth $44M | NFL.com

Milano is choosing to stay in Buffalo, where he’s spent his entire four-year professional career, instead of potentially making more money on the open market.

At an average annual value of $11 million, Milano is giving up what would have likely been around $2 million more per year with another team that had more cap space. He’s taking a slight discount to stick with the Bills, who weren’t entirely up against the salary cap, but likely couldn’t afford to shell out $13 million per year to keep the linebacker.

Chicago Bears agree to deal with kicker Cairo Santos | ESPN

Sources told ESPN that it’s a five-year deal worth up to $16 million. The final two years of it are voidable, which would bring it to a three-year deal worth a maximum of $11 million.

Santos took advantage of his opportunity after Eddy Pineiro injured his groin in August, making 30 of 32 field goals and 36 of 37 extra points last season.

He set a franchise record for consecutive field goals made and gave the Bears the stability they’d been seeking since they cut Robbie Gould before the 2016 season.

In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride

Four free-agent options for Chiefs to replace Eric Fisher and Mitchell Schwartz

Trent Williams

Williams was considered one of the best offensive tackles in the NFL in 2020, as he has been for most of his career. He’ll be 33 soon, but that won’t drive his price tag down. Spotrac projects that his market value is a salary of over $18 million annually. For comparison, Indianapolis Colts’ tackle Anthony Castonzo signed a two-year deal for $16.5 million annually at age 31 recently.

He’d be a dream addition for the Chiefs as their young offensive tackles get their feet under them more. It sounds like he might return to the San Francisco 49ers, but the Chiefs have the cap space to aggressively attack the signing now.

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