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Report: Carlos Dunlap open to Kansas City return in 2023

Dunlap accomplished all his goals with the Chiefs in his lone season with the club.


13-year defensive end Carlos Dunlap has not closed the door on a 2023 return to the Kansas City Chiefs — according to a new report from Forbes.

“I can help another team get one of their own or help the Chiefs again,” Dunlap said, per Jeff Fedotin. “The Chiefs haven’t ruled that out, but currently it’s a waiting game.”

The 34-year-old Dunlap joined Kansas City in 2022 and, during the campaign, accomplished every goal he set for himself — notching his 100th career sack, winning his first playoff game and lifting the Lombardi Trophy.

“The Chiefs obviously have a special spot for me because they were the first team to help me win a playoff game and to win a Super Bowl,” Dunlap added. “So that would be a great opportunity.”

A little more than a month ago, came out with a piece identifying the Kansas City Chiefs’ top remaining need as wide receiver.

My argument was that the club has enough when it comes to pass-catchers to repeat as champions, and what they really need is a veteran defensive end. According to the poll in our post, 55% of you agreed, 27% thought the roster was fine, 13% wanted a receiver and 5% wanted to see something else happen.

Dunlap returning to Kansas City for one more go-around would be the perfect fit. In 2022, the 6-foot-6, 285-pound defensive end tallied 4.0 sacks and 12 quarterback hits to go along with 39 tackles (25 solo). He was recently spotted at the ring ceremony in Kansas City looking happy and healthy.

Dunlap noted the “waiting game” right now, considering where the Chiefs stand regarding cap space. According to OverTheCap, Kansas City has the lowest remaining cap space of any team entering 2023, but that should change with the expected contract extension to come for defensive tackle Chris Jones.

Perhaps some of that money could go to Dunlap, who served younger players such as defensive end George Karlaftis and Mike Danna as a mentor in 2022 — and he could do the same for rookie defensive end Felix Anudike-Uzomah and defensive lineman Charles Omenihu in 2023. That point is magnified with defensive end Frank Clark landing with the Denver Broncos.

As it stands on Tuesday, there is no rush for Dunlap, who signed with the Chiefs in late July. But he still wants to play, and Kansas City has a need.

Once a deal for Jones frees up the necessary space, it simply makes too much sense.


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