Kansas City Chiefs Rumors & News

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/22/17

Here are today’s minor moves.

  • Former Chargers sixth-round pick Tourek Williams signed with the Chiefs, who cut Victor Ochi in a Monday exchange of linebackers. Williams is entering his fifth season after playing four with the Chargers. Williams started in six games as a rookie and played in 16 during the 2014 and ’16 campaigns. He saw a broken foot end his 2015 slate after three games.
  • The Saints signed tackle Bryce Harris and waived defensive back Forrest Hightower. Harris played three seasons, 2012-14, with the Saints before bouncing around the league. He failed to make New Orleans’ 53-man roster out of training camp in 2015 but returns nearly two years later. The former UDFA out of Fresno State has four career starts on his resume, each with New Orleans.
  • The Rams signed defensive tackles Omarius Bryant and A.J. Jefferson while waiving offensive lineman Kwayde Miller. Meanwhile, defensive back Dravious Wright left the team. Wright caught on with the Rams as a UDFA last month. Jefferson is a UDFA out of Mississippi State. The Ravens cut Bryant, who played at Western Kentucky.
  • The Patriots re-signed wide receiver DeAndrew White, who spent the 2016 season on the team’s practice squad. White was originally a 49ers UDFA addition in 2015. He saw action in four games with San Francisco that season as a return man.

Alex Smith Realistic About Chiefs Future

The Chiefs gave Alex Smith a heads-up before drafting Patrick Mahomes, but the veteran is realistic about what the rookie’s presence means for him.

I think [the Chiefs are] committed to me [only] through this year,” Smith said (via ESPN.com’s Adam Teicher). “That’s just the nature of it. If you don’t go out there and perform, I mean, coach [Andy] Reid and [quarterbacks coach Matt Nagy] are very honest. You’ve got to go out there and do your deal. We all have to. Whether or not we drafted Patrick, it doesn’t change that, right? If you’re not good enough and didn’t get it done, you’re not going to be around long. That’s just our culture. I know it. That’s the nature of the position.”

  • The Chiefs are hiring former Packers Assistant Director of Pro Personnel Tim Terry to be their new Director of Pro Personnel, a source tells Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). Terry was started with the Packers in 2004 and ascended to Assistant Director of Pro Personnel in 2008. After roughly 13 years in Green Bay, he’s going from the NFC North to the AFC West and getting a promotion.

Chiefs Claim LB Reshard Cliett Off Waivers

The Chiefs have claimed linebacker Reshard Cliett off waivers, Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times tweets. The former University of South Florida standout was dropped by the Titans on Monday. Reshard Cliett (vertical)

At USF, Cliett totaled 89 tackles, five sacks, and 12.5 tackles for a loss in his final two seasons. He was drafted by the Texans in the sixth round of the 2015 draft but missed his would-be rookie season with a knee injury. In 2016, he missed Houston’s final cut and went on to have practice squad stints with the Jets, Broncos, and Cardinals.

In other Chiefs news, the team shook up the front office this week by parting ways with execs Trip MacCracken and Will Lewis. Kansas City also added one of the best offensive linemen left on the market by signing Andrew Tiller.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Chiefs Make Front Office Changes

Two experienced Chiefs front office execs will be on the market after the franchise opted to move on without them. Seven-year Chiefs staffer Trip MacCracken and four-year cog Will Lewis will not return in their roles for the 2017 season after their contracts weren’t renewed, Field Yates of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter).

The Chiefs’ director of football administration over the past three years, MacCracken spent seven years total in Kansas City after being with the Browns from the start (Browns 2.0, that is) in 1999. MacCracken joined the Chiefs midway through Scott Pioli‘s tenure, beginning work on the team’s salary cap in 2010. He spent seven seasons working on the Browns’ cap before moving into their football administration director role in 2006.

Lewis, 58, enjoyed a lengthy run with the Seahawks — from 1999-2012 — before coming over to the Chiefs once John Dorsey was hired to succeed Pioli as the franchise’s GM in 2013. Lewis spent his final four years in Seattle as the franchise’s vice president of football operations before coming to Kansas City.

Both are expected to land elsewhere, Yates tweets. It’s logical to point to the Colts as a possible landing spot for these execs after Chris Ballard took over in Indianapolis. Dorsey’s former second in command has gone about reshaping the Colts’ front office after the draft. Considering moves were made as recently as Friday, it can be assumed Ballard isn’t done reorganizing. Pioli’s position with the Falcons gives MacCracken another potential destination as well.

Johnson Still Hoping For Camp Return

  • A training camp return remains the goal for 13th-year Chiefs linebacker Derrick Johnson. The inside ‘backer said Sunday from a NASCAR race at Kansas Speedway, per Blair Kerkhoff of the Kansas City Star, he’s still on track to be ready by camp. “I’ll go back Texas after we break OTAs, get my body right,” the 34-year-old Johnson said. “That’s the plan. Be ready for camp.” Johnson has now suffered two severe Achilles injuries in a three-season period. The Chiefs did not draft a linebacker until Round 5 (Ukeme Eligwe out of Georgia Southern), and although Johnson accepted a paycut this offseason, the Chiefs are still counting on him to return to his post on their starting defense.

Chiefs Sign OL Andrew Tiller

One of the best remaining free agent offensive linemen is now off the board. The Chiefs announced that they have signed guard Andrew TillerAndrew Tiller (vertical)

Tiller visited the Chiefs in late March and left without a deal, but the two sides circled back to each other roughly six weeks later. The Syracuse product started 14 games over the last two seasons for San Francisco and it’s a bit surprising that he had to wait until May to sign somewhere.

The Chiefs now have four true guards on the roster in Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, Zach FultonParker Ehinger, and Tiller. In addition to them, they have a pair of guard/tackles in Jah Reid and Mike Person. The arrival of Tiller could displace Person, particularly if Tiller’s deal comes with a significant guarantee. Then again, since Tiller has signed so late in the offseason, he might not have much of a guarantee on his deal.

Tiller graded out as Pro Football Focus’ No. 43 ranked guard last season. He had nearly even marks for pass blocking and run blocking, according to PFF’s metrics.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Khaseem Greene Facing Legal Trouble

The Chiefs released linebacker Khaseem Greene on Tuesday for reasons that weren’t entirely related to football. The Rutgers product was indicted on weapons charges for an incident that went down in December in Elizabeth, New Jersey, as Marisa Iati of NJ.com writes. Khaseem Greene (vertical)

[RELATED: Chiefs Sign Former Saints Second Round Pick Stanley Jean-Baptiste]

Prosecutors found surveillance video of Greene, 28, handing a gun to someone outside of a nightclub on December 3, moments before that person fired a gun into a crowd of people. That man, Jason C. Sanders, gave a statement to authorities in which he confessed that Greene handed him the firearm.

Greene was a fourth round pick of the Bears in 2013, but his time in Chicago didn’t last long. After 25 games in two years for the Bears, he bounced around the league and spent time with the Bucs and Lions before signing a futures contract with the Chiefs in January. Even before the indictment, he was far from a lock to make KC’s 53-man roster. If he cannot clear his name in court, it might be a while before we see him in camp with another team.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/9/17

Today’s minor moves:

Baltimore Ravens

Kansas City Chiefs

New York Jets

  • Waived: WR Deshon Foxx

Oakland Raiders

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Waived: LS Dax Dellenbach (Twitter link via Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times)

Chiefs Sign Six Players, Cut Seven

The Chiefs are making moves. The team announced on Tuesday afternoon that six players have been signed while seven others have been shown the door:

Signed:

Cut:

Taylor was signed by the Chiefs just last week but was unable to stick on the roster. Before coming to KC, Taylor spent part of the 2016 season on the Seahawks’ practice squad and one game on the 53-man roster. Unfortunately, his odds of making the Chiefs’ final cut was never all that great anyway with Spencer Ware, Charcandrick West, C.J. Spiller, and third-round pick Kareem Hunt already in the fold. Taylor, a former sixth-round pick, will now look to hook on elsewhere.

Jean-Baptiste auditioned for the Chiefs over the weekend. Selected in the second round of the 2014 draft by New Orleans, he has yet to live up to the hype. In his three seasons since being drafted, he has appeared in just four games.

Alex Smith Signed Off On Patrick Mahomes Pick

As the Chiefs were preparing to trade up 17 spots in the first round of this year’s draft to select Texas Tech quarterback Patrick Mahomes 10th overall, they reached out to starting signal-caller Alex Smith to make sure he’d be OK with it, general manager John Dorsey told the NFL Network on Monday (via Conor Orr of NFL.com). “You know, Alex is the consummate professional,” said Dorsey. “He’s been through these types of situations before and we made sure we communicated with Alex leading up to the draft that we may make a move like this. And when we were on the clock and traded up with Buffalo, we made sure we again got in contact with Alex and he’s all on board with this.” Even after the addition of Mahomes, Smith knows the Chiefs are “his team,” per Dorsey, who praised the 33-year-old for owning “the fourth-winningest record” among QBs since his KC tenure began in 2013. The Chiefs have indeed posted an excellent regular-season mark (41-20) with Smith at the controls, but they’ve managed only one playoff win in three trips. Now, thanks in no small part to the Chiefs’ investment in Mahomes, Smith appears unlikely to last as their starter for much longer. The 12-year veteran’s contract will expire after the 2018 season.

More from the AFC:

  • The Ravens are the best fit for free agent running back LeGarrette Blount, opines ESPN.com’s Jamison Hensley, who writes that the ex-Patriot’s “bruising” style would be perfect for Baltimore’s offense. Moreover, running back is a need for the Ravens, Hensley points out. With Kenneth Dixon set to miss the opening quarter of the season on account of a suspension and Terrance West having led the team last year with a so-so 774 yards on 193 carries, it’s hard to argue with Hensley. PFR’s Zach Links recently made a case for Baltimore to sign Blount, who set a career high with 1,161 rushing yards and finished with an NFL-best 18 touchdowns on the ground last season.
  • Retired quarterback Peyton Manning had a hand in the Dolphins’ late-winter acquisition of tight end Julius Thomas from the Jaguars, Joe Schad of the Palm Beach Post details. Manning played in Indianapolis under now-Dolphins offensive coordinator Clyde Christiansen, who contacted the future Hall of Famer about Thomas when Miami was considering trading for him. Thomas’ best seasons, the 2013 and ’14 campaigns, came in Denver with Manning under center (and now-Dolphins head coach Adam Gase at offensive coordinator). Having tossed 24 touchdown passes to Thomas during that two-year span, Manning offered Christiansen a positive review of the tight end, saying “that (Thomas) figured it out. (Thomas’) figure-it-out factor was high. That’s what you look for. There’s a guy who came in and probably didn’t know a whole bunch about football, or played very little. His experience was very minimal, and then (he) came in and figured it out and then worked.”
  • The Titans are likely to promote Jon Salge to director of college scouting, a source told ESPN’s Adam Caplan (Twitter link). Salge, a college scout who’s in his 11th year with the Titans, would replace the recently fired Blake Beddingfield.