Reiter initially joined the Chiefs as a waiver claim before the 2018 season began after the Cleveland Browns waived him when active rosters were due. Brett Veach seized on the chance to see how he would return from a torn ACL that was part of the door shutting on him in Cleveland and it worked out very well as Reiter not only made the Chiefs roster in year one but he became the starting center by the beginning of year two.
Reiter started every single game at center for the Chiefs during their Super Bowl run in 2019—their first championship in 50 seasons—and he again started nearly every game in 2020 as they sought to “run it back.” There was a stretch at midseason when the Chiefs tried out Daniel Kilgore for a few games, but Reiter reclaimed his starting role and held it down through the postseason.
As Barrows explains it, quarterback Patrick Mahomes got directly involved in the recruiting, with a “strong pitch” via texts and phone calls aimed at getting Williams to join the two-time defending AFC champions.
Mahomes and Williams know each other, and their hometowns in Texas are roughly 30 minutes apart.
Per Barrows, that wasn’t enough to overcome Williams’ bond with 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan. It dates back to their time together in Washington.
“Oh yeah, all the time and that’s just like even around the house. I ball up socks and try to throw it in the basket (and) like I’m talking to my dog, I’m like, ‘Patrick Mahomes!’ Having fun with it and understanding that this is a talent that ... I’m fortunate enough to play on side of him and then just seeing the things that he does at practice, I get to watch Pat every day.
“And some of the things that he may think is just like a shoo-off, I might be behind him like losing my mind after a 60-yard bomb, and he might have thrown it off his back foot.
“Just those little things I’m able to see and watch, and watch him do those things that they’re showing on highlights. I mean it’s special though, every second I’m behind him, every second that I get to watch, I’m taking it all in.”
Kyle Long, G, Kansas City Chiefs
The deal: One year, up to $5 million
Top 100 ranking: 70
If Long is healthy, this is a grand slam for the Chiefs. You’ll remember that Long was one of the NFL’s best guards from 2013 to ‘15 with the Bears. Injuries cost him eight games in 2016, six in 2017, eight in 2018 and 12 in 2019. If a year off has healed him and he can come anywhere close to his early-career performance, the Chiefs will have gone a long way toward rebuilding their offensive line after the releases of left tackle Eric Fisher and right tackle Mitchell Schwartz.
And while their acquisition of free-agent guard Joe Thuney cost them a premium deal (five years, $80 million), the Chiefs’ deal with Long is a bargain no matter how it works out. There were plenty of teams interested, and Long visited with the Raiders — the franchise for whom his father, Howie, produced a Hall of Fame career — but the Chiefs’ recruiting got the job done. The big worry, of course, is whether Long can stay on the field for most of the season. It hasn’t happened in six years. But that’s why the Chiefs got the price they did. — Seifert
Spencer Brown OL
Brown is not a popular pick in the first round but I’m buying stock. With his athleticism, the sky is the limit. Kansas City has backed itself into a corner after parting ways with Mitchell Schwartz and Eric Fisher. The interior offensive line has been significantly upgraded with Joe Thuney and Kyle Long but there is work to be done on the edge.
Around the NFL
The Buffalo Bills agreed to terms on a one-year deal with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky on Thursday.
The Chicago Bears parted ways with the former No 2 overall draft pick after four seasons and a 29-21 record.
Trubisky will back up 2020 Pro Bowl selection Josh Allen in Buffalo. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“These new media deals will provide our fans even greater access to the games they love. We’re proud to grow our partnerships with the most innovative media companies in the market,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “Along with our recently completed labor agreement with the NFLPA, these distribution agreements bring an unprecedented era of stability to the League and will permit us to continue to grow and improve our game.”
The new agreement will also see the Super Bowl air on four networks.
From 2023 through 2033, three Super Bowls each will be hosted by CBS (2023, 2027, 2031), FOX (2024, 2028, 2032) and NBC (2025, 2029, 2033), while ABC (2026, 2030) will carry two.
“They told me I was the starter,” Dalton said Thursday. “That was one of the reasons why I wanted to come here. So every conversation I’ve had has been that, so that’s the assurance that I’ve gotten.”
A three-time Pro Bowler, Dalton agreed Tuesday to a one-year, $10 million deal. He can earn an additional $3 million in bonuses.
Collectively, though, it’s a stunning turn of events. The Patriots almost never open the checkbook at the start of free agency. Even when they signed cornerback Stephon Gilmore to a $65 million deal in 2017, only two more signings—running back Rex Burkhead and defensive lineman Lawrence Guy—joined Gilmore in that class. The Patriots gave Smith a contract with the most guaranteed money ever for a tight end, then signed Henry to an equally large deal by annual value. Some of these deals are arguably overpays—Judon has never had 10 sacks in a season and Smith’s career receiving high is 448 yards; the two combined are getting about $63 million in guaranteed money—but that’s not a knock on the players. That’s what happens to teams that have no choice but to rebuild their roster in free agency—the Patriots just have seldom been in that position under Belichick. Usually, they wait around to sniff out below-market deals, they don’t go out to buy a new team. That’s what the Jets are supposed to do.
Andrews is returning to the Patriots, NFL Network’s Kim Jones reported. Andrews will be signing a four-year deal, NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported.
In the No. 37 spot on Gregg Rosenthal’s Top 101 free agents of 2021, the 29-year-old Andrews has been both a mainstay on the Patriots offensive front and an uplifting comeback story.
After missing all of the 2019 season due to blood clots in his legs, Andrews returned to the Pats in 2020 and despite the team’s travails still performed well overall.
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
“The opportunities to win football games and do special things in this league [is] something I’ve never done in my career,” Long noted. “And I feel like I could fit. I know I can fit here — and I’m looking forward to proving that.”
If there had been any doubt lingering in his mind, it apparently disappeared once he was at One Arrowhead Drive.
“Sitting in Coach Reid’s office, I just knew that this is where I wanted to be.” — Kyle Long
“It feels awkward landing in a city that you don’t consider home,” he recalled of his arrival. “But when you walk into this building here in Kansas City, it becomes apparent that things are different here. Sitting in Coach Reid’s office, I just knew that this is where I wanted to be.”
A tweet to make you think
Slap Reiter back in here with better movers on either side of him and hope it looks better.— Matt Lane (@ChiefinCarolina) March 19, 2021
Draft an OC mid-rounds, maybe a OC/OG type that can play RG or OC in 2022. This particular move isn't that big of a deal.
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