Although most of the marquee names in the 2012 free agent class have found homes, there are still many players on the market with a lot of value.
The Chiefs have made some noise by signing right tackle Eric Winston and running back Peyton Hillis, but more work can be done. Kansas City has filled many needs already but these second-tier free agents seem to find a way to pay off for playoff teams.
Sammie Lee Hill is a restricted free agent, but the Lions only have a fourth round tender placed on him. Hill would fill the Chiefs biggest need at the nose tackle spot. Even though Hill is a tad tall to be playing the nose position, he would be a great pickup for low-draft pick.
Chargers tackle Marcus McNeill was plagued by injuries last season but still has plenty left in the tank. Kansas City inexplicably released Jared Gaither last season after he performed well in limited action.
This signing could make up for that mistake. The Chiefs are set at both tackle spots after signing Eric Winston, but McNeill offers quality depth and the ability to start if needed.
Aubrayo Franklin was thought to be a target for Kansas City last offseason but general manager Scott Pioli declined to bring him in. Franklin fills the Chiefs biggest hole and could be had for relatively cheap. Franklin plays the run well, and a stout nose tackle is exactly what the defense needs to take the next step.
Wallace Gilberry is out of position as an undersized 3-4 defensive end in Kansas City. Despite this, he performed well as a situational pass rusher and recorded seven sacks in 2010.
Gilberry provides solid depth and plays well in Romeo Crennel’s sub-packages. Bringing him back seems like a no-brainer to everyone outside of the front office.
Oh, he signed with Denver...
Manning is obviously gone but this is the piece that Kansas City needed to become a legit Super Bowl contender.
Quarterback Matt Cassel isn’t the answer and the team is young and talented at every other position on the field. Just think of what Manning could have done with Jamaal Charles running the ball behind him?
The Chiefs are loaded at receiver too, with pro bowler Dwayne Bowe and last year’s first round pick Jonathan Baldwin in the mix. Add in other offseason signings like Kevin Boss and Peyton Hillis with Manning, and the Kansas City offense becomes elite.