Patrick Mahomes has agreed to a contract restructure, so here are three moves the Chiefs could make now.
With Patrick Mahomes under center, the championship window for the Kansas City Chiefs is open until further notice. But no one is immune to this year’s lower NFL salary cap, and the Chiefs released starting offensive tackles Eric Fisher and Mitchell Schwartz on Thursday.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Mahomes has agreed to a contract restructure. His $21.7 million roster bonus is expected to be converted into a signing bonus, creating $17 million in cap space for the Chiefs. With that extra space, adding an offensive tackle or two becomes easier.
Any free agent looking to win a ring might be willing to take a discount to sign with the Chiefs. With less money to go around, those kind of discounts will be more common this offseason than in any other offseason of the free agency era.
With the salary cap relief Mahomes has now helped to give them, here are three moves the Chiefs could make.
3. Sign WR Curtis Samuel
Even after Allen Robinson and Chris Godwin have gotten the franchise tag, the free agent class of wide receivers remains deep. The Chiefs won’t be in the high end of that market, but they will surely be letting Sammy Watkins go and Mecole Hardman has a lot to prove.
Samuel had the best season of his career in 2020, with 77 catches for 851 yards, 200 rushing yards (on 41 carries) and five total touchdowns. The Panthers featured him more as a multi-purpose weapon with Christian McCaffrey out, and it’s still worth wondering what his upside would be in a better offense with a better quarterback (or at least a healthier quarterback, with a nod to Cam Newton’s issues late in his career with the Panthers).
Spotrac has tabbed Samuel’s market value at $12.4 million per year, which will be more than a little rich for the Chiefs if that holds in reality. But as his potential suitors with more money to spend perhaps aim higher, the Chiefs could circle back and give Samuel a soft landing.