Why did Veach spend a small fortune on UDFA’s?


OTC’s Nick Korte tweeted a list of biggest and smallest spenders on UDFA’s. topping the list was the Kansas City Chiefs. Why would Veach spend over $1M on UDFA’s when he’s already got such a stacked roster? To answer the why, let’s first take a look at the "Who."

· RB Deneric Prince $236k

· DE Truman Jones $236k

· LB Cam Jones $150k

· LB Isaiah Moore $148k

· IOL Jerome Carvin $112.5k

· CB Kahlef Hailassie $100k

· CB Reese Taylor $70k

· WR Nikko Remigio $65k

(Numbers based on dead money if cut according to OTC.)

Where do these guys fit into the Chiefs’ plans this year?

· Deneric Prince has a legitimate shot to make the roster as the RB4. His ceiling is probably RB3 if he leapfrogs CEH. That would put him a Pacheco injury away from being the "running-down" back for KC next year.

· Truman Jones has a chance to make the roster along with BJ Thompson in place of Herring/Kaindoh. It’s more likely he ends up on the PS.

· Cam Jones’ ceiling is as a special teams ace if he can beat out Cochrane and Isaiah Moore. His floor is the Practice Squad. In between he could push for the Chiefs to keep a 6th LB as a 2nd special teams ace.

· Isaiah Moore’s outlook is identical to Cam Jones.

· Jerome Carvin is likely to be stashed on the Practice Squad this year. I would be astonished if he pushed his way onto the roster past the 3-headed monster that is PTW/Niang/Kinnard or the 3-way stud backup Nick Allegretti. I suppose it’s possible he’s the OL10 if the Chiefs keep that many on the 53.

· Kahlef Hailassie has an outside chance to make the roster this year as a special teams ace. It is much more likely that he’s either on the PS or looking for a job elsewhere.

· Reese Taylor is in the same boat as Hailassie.

· Nikko Remigio has an outside chance to make the roster as a return specialist IF he can beat out Richie James. It’s more likely he ends up on the PS this year.

So why is Veach spending all this money on guys who won’t even make the 53-man roster?

Incomplete Explanations from Charles Goldman’s ChiefsWire Article:

1. Extra Resources: "One reason Kansas City is a big spender here – their entire draft class costs less than others given that they’re picking at the end of each round." This is reasonable. Yet there may be more to it than this as those same resources could be applied to veteran contracts this year. Why spend this money on these unproven players rather than proven vets?

2. Application of Basic Approach: "Brett Veach feels he can go out and spend a bit more there in order to land players that they really like." Is this just your typical (unnecessary) Veach aggressiveness showing itself again? I agree that Veach & Co. may like these players. It is likely they offered bigger deals than other teams though we can’t be sure. Is that all that’s going on here?

3. Player Motivation: "Without a lot of starting jobs up for grabs… some of these players might need some extra motivation." I highly doubt there’s a single UDFA that will be starting for the Chiefs this year on either offense or defense though one or more could break through on special teams. We could add that there are not a lot of roster spots up for grabs either. Would a player really give up a chance to start at the NFL level for a tad bit more signing bonus? If so, his mentally-defective agent should be fired. Only about 5% of UDFA’s "start" as rookies and most of that is special teams: punter, kicker, return specialist, long-snapper. These guys are not looking to start. They’re looking to make a team, develop, and wait for their opportunity to show what they can do on an NFL field.

My own explanations:

1. Possibility heuristic: These guys are the NFL equivalent of lottery tickets. Low risk. High reward. They cost zero draft capital and zero against the cap as long as they make a practice squad somewhere. It doesn’t even have to be in KC. If the Chiefs had draftable grades on these guys, why not bring them in and see what they can do? The payoff could be massive.

2. Investing in the future: While most of these guys won’t make the Chiefs roster this year, with a year to develop on the PS, they could be ready to take on a role next year. Look at 9 of the free agents the Chiefs will have in 2024:


· DE Mike Danna

· DE Malik Herring

· LB Drue Tranquill

· LB Willie Gay

· IOL Nick Allegretti

· [IOL Austin Reiter-on PS last year]

· CB L’Jarius Sneed

· WR/returner Richie James

· WR MVS (Cut candidate – save $12M)
A player doesn’t have to have value for the roster this year to have value for the Chiefs’ budding dynasty. If he can spend a year or two developing and then come up and contribute on a minimum-salary contract already understanding the system and knowing his coaches and teammates, that’s a huge win. Before Veach makes any moves next offseason, there will be a place for all of these guys on the 2024 roster. It’s an investment in the future.

3. Veteran Player Motivation: Part of the reason to bring in high-end UDFA’s who are unlikely to make the roster is to make sure the "veterans" (many of whom are still on rookie contracts) don’t get too comfortable. The entire 2023 rookie class just won a Super Bowl their first year in the league. Winning tends to make you lazy. Competition keeps players driven rather than complacent. I think a lot of these guys were brought in to make sure that those who worked hard last year to contribute to a SB win, don’t let up and let their team down.


Here’s a quick rundown of everything I said above in table form:


Crazy ceiling

Realistic ceiling

Most likely

Realistic floor

Worst case

2024 dream

D Prince

RB1 after Pacheco injury




PS not KC


T Jones

Rotational DE

Roster depth



PS not KC

DE rotation

C Jones &
I Moore

Starting LB after injuries

ST ace

ST ace/PS


PS not KC


J Carvin

3-way IOL backup




PS not KC

3-way IOL backup

K Hailassie & R Taylor

ST ace





CB5/DB10/ ST ace

N Remigio

All-Pro Returner




PS not KC

Slot WR/ returner


By guaranteeing money to UDFA’s, Veach and the FO have guaranteed depth for the Kansas City Chiefs this year and next year for free. Why do I say "for free"? Because as long as these guys make a practice squad somewhere in the league, the money KC guaranteed gets paid to them without costing the Chiefs a cent against the salary cap. You could say the Chiefs gained 7 extra 7th round picks by offering some money to guys they didn’t acquire through the draft. Veach is a genius. I can’t wait to see what these guys show in camp.

So, do you have anything to add or tweak? I’d love to hear from you guys.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.