We're now a few weeks past the ugly Super Bowl loss for the Kansas City Chiefs and while we don't mean to remind you of the frustrating game, offseason talk has quickly heated up among Chiefs Kingdom as fans are eager to discuss what moves need to be made in order for the Chiefs to get back to the Super Bowl. This is a make or break offseason for the front office in Kansas City as they look to retool the roster that fell short in the championship. Today, we're going to layout the most important things general manager Brett Veach has to do in order for the offseason to be made a success.
Add another edge rusher
One of the biggest disappointments of the Chiefs 2020 season was the underperformance of the defensive line despite the money given out to improve it over the past few years. The Chiefs are paying just over $200 million for the defensive line position group and yet they couldn't even crack the top-half of the league in sacks or rush defense. This has to change and the Chiefs likely need to add another threat on the edge in order to help out the pass rush. Unfortunately, this year's edge class in the draft isn't super athletic and the Chiefs need to allocate most draft resources on their offensive line. Kansas City also can't afford to rely on a rookie edge defender. They need an instant-impact free agent but they don't necessarily have to spend much. We've already discussed J.J. Watt as an option that could be cheap. He had similar production to Frank Clark this past season but was doubled much more often but if you were to add him to this defense, teams can't double Watt, Clark, and Jones. That would help improve the pass rush tremendously and open things up for everyone else.
Get a play-making WR2
Before we get into this let us clarify that Mecole Hardman is not the answer at WR2. Could he still become one? Yes, but the Chiefs can't bank on that as he plateaued in 2020 which you can read about here. Anyways, Sammy Watkins got hurt one too many times when he missed essentially the entire postseason and only played 14 snaps in the Super Bowl. It's time to move on and find someone more dependable (and maybe cheaper as well). The Chiefs could attack this either in the draft or free agency. There are some interesting draft prospects out there like Kadarius Toney or Amon Ra St.Brown and free agent options like Marvin Jones and Corey Davis are interesting additions that could work financially. Some fans have thrown around the idea of Allen Robinso but unless you want no other improvements to the roster this offseason then Robinson wouldn't be smart because he'll make anywhere from $14-20 million annually. Regardless, The Chiefs need someone outside of Tyreek Hill that is reliable and can do some damage all over the field.
Rebuild the offensive line
The most obvious offseason objective is to rebuild the offensive line. A lot went wrong in the Super Bow but the biggest reason for the collapse was the offensive line. The Chiefs will need almost a whole new one. Fisher and Schwartz most likely are done, though Schwartz is still a question mark, and the interior was less than stellar in 2020. The Chiefs could fix the offensive line by getting probably a tackle and a center in the draft closer to the top-100 than anything and then they could sign a veteran free agent or two. You still have Niang returning in 2021 along with LDT. The Chiefs could also bring back Mike Remmers who was a solid backup. Depending on Kelechi Osemele's health they could bring him back too. Best-case scenario you have Niang, Osemele(?), rookie, LDT, Schwartz with Remmers and another rookie as backups or you could go Niang, Allegretti, rookie, LDT, rookie. You get the point. Either way the Chiefs badly need a youth and talent injection on the offensive line. The days of UDFA and 6th and 7th rounders contributing on the line are clearly over.
Add another talented defensive back
The Chiefs secondary was an overall strength in 2020. It wasn't elite by any means but you could trust it. However, there were weak spots. Charvarius Ward for one had a regression year and while he'd be a cheap option to bring back, maybe the Chiefs should get another young corner that you can trust consistently to take away another team's best receiver. DeAndre Baker had the potential to be that but he unfortunately broke his leg in gruesome fashion in week 17 and will have to rehab for a long time. Bashaud Breeland is also a free agent and is getting older in age. Dan Sorenson could also be a cap saver by cutting him in 2021 as well. There are definitely some question marks. Patrick Peterson is out there and the Chiefs could potentially bring him in given where he's at in his career and his relationship with Tyrann Mathieu. They could also draft a cover-safety to replace Dan Sorenson and try to take away the middle of the field. Adding another talented defensive back could do wonders for the Chiefs in 2021 and it is an understated need.
Get another athletic linebacker
The Chiefs could definitely use another athletic linebacker to go with Willie Gay in the rotation. Anything to get Ben Niemann off the field quite frankly. Damien Wilson is a free agent and there's no guarantee the team bring him back. The Chiefs run defense still struggles a lot and most of it has to do with the linebackers not being athletic enough to quickly fill gaps or shed blocks. Anthony Hitchens is also starting to reach the end of his contract in Kansas City and it might be smart to draft a future replacement for him this summer. Nick Bolton out of Missouri or Zaven Collins are names that have been linked to the Chiefs a lot. Either that or an idea we like here at ShowMeFootball is bring in UFA Reuben Foster who is big and athletic and may still have some upside after having a rough go of things since he entered the league.
That's quite a handful of demands and the Chiefs will have some work to do with the cap this offseason if they hope to hit most of the aforementioned areas but it's far from impossible. General manager Brett Veach will just have to hit in the draft more than he has recently and we all trust him to figure out the money thing. If the Chiefs can do that then it will be considered a successful offseason.