Chiefs defensive lineman Mike Pennel is set to become an unrestricted free agent, but he made it very clear that he wants to return to Kansas City next season.
“I’d definitely like to stay here,” Pennel told Herbie Teope of KansasCity.com. “I know this is the place where I work well with the coaches, I love the fan base, I love the city and my family stays out here.
“I know it’s a business, but I told my agents and I told everybody in the Kansas City Chiefs organization that I’d like to be back.”
It’s not too surprising to hear this sentiment from Pennel. Besides winning a Super Bowl with the Chiefs, the organization also helped to revitalize the veteran’s career. Following two underwhelming seasons with the Jets, the lineman signed a two-year deal with the Patriots last offseason. However, he didn’t make it to the regular season with New England, and Pennel still found himself out of work in mid-October.
He signed with the Chiefs half way through the season, and he proceeded to compile 24 tackles and one sack in eight games for the team. He also appeared in each of Kansas City’s three playoff games, starting two of them. Most notably, as Teope points out, the Chiefs run defense improved immensely as the season went on, with Pennel earning some praise for his play.
“Mike’s been huge in regards to the strength to our interior run defense, and playing stout and playing with leverage,” said general manager Brett Veach. “You can never have enough of those bodies, so when you have another guy that is talented as Mike, it’s a big deal.”
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.