Kansas City Chiefs: 5 Players Scott Pioli Must Re-Sign in 2012
Ever since Scott Pioli became the general manager of the Kansas City Chiefs, he has granted new contracts to Andy Studebaker, Derrick Johnson, Jamaal Charles, Tamba Hali and Brandon Flowers.
Friday afternoon, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Pioli signed Ryan Succop to a contract extension. Succop and the Chiefs agreed to a five-year deal worth $14 million.
With Succop now joining the core of Chiefs, who have proved themselves, who will follow suit? There are several players whose contracts are expiring or who have one year left on their contracts following Sunday's game against the Denver Broncos. Who else deserves to be re-signed or have their contracts extended?
QB Kyle Orton
Kyle Orton may only have played in only a couple of games under center for the Chiefs, but he has shown that he can be an accurate quarterback. Fans want to know if Matt Cassel will return or if the Chiefs will give Orton a shot next season.
While things have not gone perfect for Orton in his short time there, he has a 66 percent completion percentage in the two games he has started for the Chiefs. Orton completed 74 percent of his passes against Green Bay. Cassel's best game, in terms of constructing a high completion percentage, was back in Week 3 of 2009 against the Philadelphia Eagles, when he completed nearly 78 percent of his throws.
As a starter, Orton went 2-1. Could Orton duplicate the success he had against the Packers over to next year in a Chiefs uniform?
WR Dwayne Bowe
Here is the biggest name on this list.
Dwayne Bowe's name has been tied into receiving a new contract with the Chiefs.
Bowe requested a contract extension after a two-touchdown game against the Indianapolis Colts earlier this year. However, Pioli did not grant his request, as Bowe went 10 games before catching another touchdown. Bowe's drop habits have also returned, making fans nervous on the idea of signing Bowe to a big contract.
Bowe was about to end the season on a high note, as he had the best of Champ Bailey, one of the most accomplished cornerbacks in the league. But he left Sunday's game early due to a sore neck. Bowe caught six passes for 93 yards, all coming in the first half before leaving the game.
In the end, the Chiefs cannot risk letting another player with a lot of potential go. Jared Allen, Tony Gonzalez and Brian Waters all have a legitimate shot at entering the Pro Football Hall of Fame. All three have been let go by the Chiefs at one point and have made the Pro Bowl with their new teams.
LT Branden Albert
Next year will be the final year of Branden Albert's contract, which he signed after being drafted in 2008. Albert has had some issues, but made significant improvements in 2010 and 2011 by allowing less sacks and committing less penalties.
The Chiefs are aging at the line and have a few issues on the other positions. However, Albert is not an issue for the Chiefs, as he has spent most of his time in Kansas City protecting a quarterback's blind side.
With Albert not contributing to the Chiefs' flaws at the offensive line, Pioli should wrap him up to a long-term deal.
CB Brandon Carr
No defensive player on the team has improved more than Brandon Carr has the past two seasons. Two years ago in the season finale in Denver, Carr was torched by Jabar Gaffney after catching 14 passes in the game between the Chiefs and Broncos to close out the 2009 season.
Carr rebounded back in 2010 and 2011. He defended receivers well and has managed to come away with four interceptions in two seasons. This year, Carr recorded a season-high four interceptions. His biggest interception came against Tim Tebow in the season finale, in which Tebow's miracle fourth-quarter comeback was stopped.
The Chiefs have a lot of potential with their defensive backfield if they bring back Carr to play with Flowers and Eric Berry. Re-signing Carr shouldn't be a question. It must be accomplished before free agency begins.
S Jon McGraw
Jon McGraw is one of the most underrated players on the team. Although he has been a backup for most of his career, he has to be considered as one of the more serviceable backups in the league.
Since joining the chiefs in 2007, McGraw has collected seven interceptions and has forced two fumbles. His three interceptions in 2011 was the most of any season for him.
McGraw has still been an active player. Since 2009, McGraw has played in 36 games and has been a starter in 23 of them. In the games he hasn’t started, he has still seen a lot of action in the safety position.
While his season did end with him missing the last three games of the season, it cannot be taken away that he was a player who stepped up on defense after Berry’s crucial injury.