La Canfora On Chiefs, 2011 Draftees, Smith

In his latest edition of training camp notes, CBS’ Jason La Canfora provided an update on negotiations between the Chiefs and Alex Smith, saying talks “are ongoing, with the dialogue maintaining on a regular basis and the team looking for creative ways to secure him for the future, according to several sources. To this point, however, they haven’t been able to bridge a few gaps, but the Chiefs are willing to cut into their considerable cap space to strike a deal, and there are no plans to stop exchanging proposals.”

La Canfora adds talks have “remained cordial” and there is mutual desire to find common ground. Common ground would seem to be a “middle-tier” deal that would place Smith’s contract somewhere between the elite passers and the lower-paid, “bridge starters” group. From the team perspective, the Chiefs don’t want to overpay for Smith in the event a younger QB is ready to vie for the job, especially given Andy Reid‘s ability to develop quarterbacks.

More tidbits from La Canfora:

  • The Chiefs have revived talks with Justin Houston, who is also a priority. La Canfora does not expect a deal to get hammered out before the season, however, since the sides are far apart financially playing out the season could make the most sense for Houston.
  • La Canfora publicized first-year tight end Demetrius Harris as a “deep sleeper” and potentially “the next college basketball player to make the jump to tight end.”
  • Do not expect many more 2011 first-rounders to be extended for a while. This group includes Cam Newton, J.J. Watt, Robert Quinn, Cameron Jordan and Muhammad Wilkerson, among others. La Canfora quoted an agent for one prominent pass rusher, who said, “The money is going to be so high, these teams don’t really have an incentive to do it now. I’m not sure any of these guys get new deals this year. If there’s any movement going on I’m not aware of it.”
  • Some agents are outraged over the Cowboys’ eight-year extension to Tyron Smith because “he essentially gave the Cowboys two contracts for the price of one, locked up until age 32.” Those agents believe Jerry Jones might have used his “father figure” relationship with the young Smith to take advantage of him in negotiations.


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