Jordan Smith

The Best And Worst KC Contracts

Created on Feb. 20, 2013 7:51 PM EST

As the NFL 2013 Free Agency looms it's time to look at the best and worst contracts that will effect the Chiefs abilities to sign players.

The Worst

Tyson Jackson

On April 21st 2012 the Chiefs former regime restructured Jackson’s enormous rookie contract to a two-year, $21.97 million pact that voided the 2014 part of his rookie deal. That leads to a bloated $14.72 million salary for the upcoming season (with a $17 million cap number). Jackson has grown into one of the best run-defending 3-4 defensive ends in the league, but the lack of pass rush productivity limits his upside greatly. Jackson's run stuffing ability is largely replaceable at a much lower cost. Expect Jackson to be in another uniform before next season.

Obligatory Matt Cassel Listing

Cassel carries a $7.5 million contract number this year. While John Dorsey has said publicly “never say never,” I'm just going to say he's never going live out the rest of his contract. As a comparison, Alex Smith has an $8.5 million dollar contract for the next two years. Cassel might be a nice backup option for some team, but that team is unlikely to be the Chiefs, and definitely not at $7.5 million.

Outside of Jackson and Cassel, the Chiefs have a slew of rookie contracts and some veterans signed to small deals. Eric Berry makes close to $9 million a year, but it's difficult to call that a bad contract considering he signed it before the rookie wage scale, and that his lack of performance on the field last year came after a torn ACL.

The Best

Derrick Johnson

One of the five best middle linebackers in the league, Johnson has three years remaining on his contract at a total of $9.25 million, plus an annual workout bonus of $250,000. His 2013 salary is only $2.25 million, making him the Chiefs greatest bargain not on a rookie contract. Johnson has graded out as the fourth, fifth, and fourth best inside linebacker, according to, over his last three years as a Chief. Johnson accumulated 110 tackles, two sacks, four forced fumbles, four pass deflections and 11 stuffs in 2012.

Jamaal Charles

The Chiefs one-man offense was signed to a six-year, $27.97 million contract in 2010. Charles' base salary is only $1.75 million this year with a $250,000 workout bonus. He carries a lowly cap hit of $4.3 million this year and $4.8 million next year. He posted 1,509 rushing yards at 5.3 yards per clip, even after coming off a torn ACL in the 2011 season. Charles was fourth in rushing yards last year, and second in 2010. What is truly amazing is the yards per carry, where Jamaal Charles is the all-time leader for backs with over 750 attempts at 5.82, crushing Jim Brown's record of 5.22.

Highest and Lowest Paid Players for 2013

Tyson Jackson will be the highest played player on the Chiefs this year, if not released, at $14.72 million. Chiefs star pass rusher Tamba Hali is appropriately paid at $12.25, second-highest on the team. The Chiefs oft-overlooked star corner Brandon Flowers comes in at third with $7.35 million. Shaun Draughn is the lowest paid player on the team at $480,000. The up and coming Justin Houston is a steal at $555,000. The developing Kendrick Lewis comes in at third lowest at $575,000. 

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