“If he stays in Green Bay, he will probably stay the same price. He won’t go to a team with lesser talent. He’s only going to go where he can win a title,” Caesars Sportsbook director of trading Craig Mucklow told ESPN, while also not assuming regression for the 38-year-old Rodgers. “Age is just a number because really the two front-runners last year were [Tom] Brady and Rodgers.”
Four quarterbacks age 26 or younger join Rodgers among the top five favourites. Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes is the other +700 co-favorite, followed by Buffalo’s Josh Allen (+900), Cincinnati’s Joe Burrow (12-1) and Justin Herbert (14-1) of the Chargers.
The meltdown of Patrick Mahomes and the offense in the AFC Championship Game will endure as an eternal headscratcher, but Kansas City remains in excellent position as we spin forward. The biggest area of need comes via the pass rush: Chiefs brass should take something away from Joe Burrow being sacked just once by Kansas City in the AFC title game and 16 times in the two playoff contests that sandwiched that affair. The Chiefs finished 29th in the league in sacks this season, a fact that put too much pressure on the back end of the defense. Chris Jones will return as the defensive line’s anchor, but he could use some dogs in the front seven.
4 - CHIEFS
The stink of the second-half loss to the Bengals in the AFC Championship Game will be hard to overcome. At some point, they have to run the ball better on offense.
10. Odell Beckham Jr., WR
Best team fit: Kansas City Chiefs
Why it makes sense: The Chiefs were in on Beckham during his midseason free-agency tour. He has to sign with a contender with high-level quarterback play, and Kansas City needs juice opposite Tyreek Hill. Plus, tight end Travis Kelce turns 33 in October. But any team interested would have to consider the injury history, after Beckham suffered an injury to his left knee in the Super Bowl. — Fowler
Scheme fit: Beckham could very well return to Los Angeles, where he certainly fits well. But we like Beckham in the Chiefs’ pass-game structure as a viable No. 3 target for Patrick Mahomes. A nuanced and savvy route runner, Beckham can win isolation matchups or be schemed as a catch-and-run option on the leveled concepts in the Kansas City playbook. — Bowen
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
With Melvin Ingram, Jarran Reed, Alex Okafor, and Derrick Nnadi all headed to free agency this spring, the Chiefs need reinforcements on the defensive line. Leal does just that by offering positional versatility to play on the edge or rush from the inside depending on the look of Kansas City’s defense.
The show will mark the 54th concert or music festival in GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium history and will be the 15th concert performance that the stadium has hosted since 2011. The 2022 show will be Strait’s fourth performance (1998-99, 2001) at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium.
“George Strait has a history of great performances at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium, and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome him back for the first time since 2001 this summer. We’re looking forward to putting together a talented lineup and hosting another full day of music,” Chiefs President Mark Donovan said. “We know how beloved George is in Kansas City and across the nation, and we are thrilled to have him return to our stadium for another incredible show.”
Around the NFL
Last year’s game had a television audience of 92 million, the lowest since 2006.
The Nielsen company said another 11.2 million people streamed the game, putting the total audience at 112.3 million people.
The game went down to the wire, like most playoff games this season, and competitiveness usually adds viewers. The game defied trends in television, which consistently sees viewership drop from year to year.
New Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell, some two weeks after reaching an agreement with the club to replace Mike Zimmer, can finally wear some purple.
The Vikings are finalizing their deal to hire the Rams offensive coordinator, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported. An official announcement is expected soon and O’Connell’s press conference is planned for Thursday, Rapoport added.
Rapoport and NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported Feb. 2. that O’Connell was the Vikings’ expected choice, but Los Angeles’ trip to Super Bowl LVI meant the deal could not be finalized until after the game.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has decided not to charge Adrian Peterson in connection to his arrest at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday for what airport officials said was domestic violence, a representative told TMZ Sports.
Peterson’s case will now be referred to the Los Angeles City Attorney, who will examine the case and still could charge Peterson with misdemeanor domestic violence, TMZ reported.
According to a Los Angeles Airport Police statement, they received a call around 8:30 a.m. local time Sunday about possible domestic violence on board an aircraft bound for Houston and responded to “a verbal and physical altercation between a male suspect and a female victim.”
In case you missed it on Arrowhead Pride
When the Chiefs took action in free agency last offseason, they targeted Smith-Schuster; head coach Andy Reid sent pictures of the Lombardi Trophy to entice the 25-year old receiver. He eventually signed back with the Pittsburgh Steelers on a one-year deal worth $8 million, taking less money than he was offered by both Kansas City and the Baltimore Ravens.
In 2021, he didn’t begin with much production — then injured his shoulder in Week 5; he didn’t play again until the Wild Card round when he was able to catch five passes for 26 yards against the Chiefs.
Without the opportunity to boost his stock, it’s possible Smith-Schuster signs for a similarly-low figure this offseason — which obviously helps the Chiefs get a deal done.
His play style fits what Kansas City is missing: a receiver with both strength and route-running skills, allowing him to win through physical coverage and get open — while also being a plus blocker. He can be versatile in his alignment, playing from both the slot and the outside — on and off the line of scrimmage.
A tweet to make you think
On day 2 of the offseason — what’s your most unpopular current #Chiefs opinion?— Arrowhead Pride (@ArrowheadPride) February 15, 2022