Even though they re-signed WR Chris Chambers yesterday, the Kansas City Chiefs have been one of the least active teams in the first week of free agency. While the lack of action can be frustrating, Bob Gretz is quick to point out that you only need to look across the division to see the down falls of a free agent spending spree.
There’s enough evidence after 17 years to show us that diving head first into the UFA waters generally brings with it a major headache. More evidence of that came down on Monday, when the Raiders released WR Javon Walker.
He was part of a four-player class that the Raiders dropped big money on in 2008. Walker got a six-year $55 million deal with $14 million guaranteed. Oakland re-signed DE Tommy Kelly to a seven-year, $50.5 million contract with $18 million guaranteed. They made a trade with Atlanta, giving up a second and fifth-round picks for CB DeAngelo Hall; part of the deal was a new contract for Hall at seven years, $68 million with $24.5 million guaranteed. Safety Gibril Wilson left the New York Giants and signed as a UFA with the Raiders for six years, $39 million, with $16 million guaranteed.
That was four players, some $212 million in total value and more than $72 million in guaranteed dollars.
I don’t know that it’s ever fair to use the Raiders as a comparison since they are the ultimate example of a train wreck, but hopefully their failures will help to talk down some Chiefs fans that are standing on the edge due to the lack of money spent by Clark Hunt (and for the record, I’m there with you).
Julius Peppers, Antrel Rolle, Dunta Robinson or Karlos Dansby would have been great additions to a Chiefs defense that is still full of holes. But what I’m trying to talk myself into is that the huge contract that one of those players commanded will instead help pay for 3 or 4 starters. Where exactly those players are coming from I’m not sure yet, but it’s always good for Chiefs fans as a whole to remind themselves that the season is a long ways away from starting.