The word dynasty is fun to throw around, but the NFL goes out of its way to make sure it doesn't happen, and the Chiefs salary cap is already proving my point, that there will never be another dynasty in the National Football League.
The Chiefs Kingdom is all jacked up after their first Super Bowl win in 50 years. Some of the Kingdom has a level head about things, while others who I describe as the insurable part of the fan base, they believe we all witnessed the start of a new dynasty.
Last week, I laid out why the New England Patriots will be the last dynasty of the NFL. Not because Patrick Mahomes isn't a good quarterback, but because Kansas City is ready to hand him $40 million per season, and the Chiefs Kingdom will now learn the lessons that so many other team's have learned.
#1 Winning the Super Bowl isn't something that happens every season.
#2 Unless you have a quarterback like Tom Brady who's willing to play for much less than market value, because he has a wife who's yearly income makes the highest paid NFL players contract look like peanuts, the salary cap doesn't allow you to have "long term success".
Don't worry Chiefs fans, Patty Mahomes is probably good enough to keep Kansas City competitive for a long time, but let's not get crazy with all of this dynasty talk. The salary cap is already becoming an issue for the Chiefs, and you're probably going to lose one of the players who willed you to the Super Bowl, and here's the secret, he doesn't play on the offense, and Mahomes can't do anything to make up for his loss.
The Chiefs have some major questions around their roster this offseason. Obviously Sammy Watkins astronomical contract, and their biggest free agent Chris Jones.
"With the season Jones had and the game-changing, disruptive impact he brings to the defensive line, Jones is certain to seek a huge contract, one that is absolutely deserved. Imagine a long-term extension for Jones coupled with Frank Clark for the foreseeable future. It’s a dream of a defensive line. However, with the inevitable contract of Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs may have some tough decisions to make." - Ellen Mathis, Arrowhead Addict
No matter how financially Savvy the Chiefs try to be, Chris Jones is going to cost a fortune, and with about $13.7 million left in cap space, it seems impossible that Jones and the Chiefs can strike a deal.
Obviously they can move some money around and free up cap space, but not enough to pay what Jones is probably worth.
"After the season Jones had, it would not be surprising if he seeks Aaron Donald money. Can the Chiefs afford that with their current cap situation and the upcoming contracts? It remains to be seen." - Ellen Mathis
“A franchise tag could be applied to keep him in place for one more season (which could cost the Chiefs $15.5 million) or a tag and trade like what Seattle did with Frank Clark last offseason. Veach will certainly need to work his magic to make this marriage happen. Hopefully the sides can agree on something that works for Jones and works for the Chiefs because, if they can, I see a dynasty forming." - Ellen Mathis
Now, there is a way that the Chiefs can keep Jones and that's parting ways with Sammy Watkins and using that money to sign Jones. The 2020 NFL draft is pretty stacked with talented wide receivers and if the Chiefs can pick right with 32nd overall pick, maybe they can find a guy to fit into the "Legion of Zoom". But something's got to give, and if I was the Chiefs I would move on from Watkins to keep Jones a 1000 times over. Sammy Watkins his replaceable, I don't know how replaceable Chris Jones is.
"His stats don't sparkle, but Chris Jones was the Chiefs defensive MVP - The Chiefs don’t win the Super Bowl without Chris Jones." - Seth Keysor, The Athletic
I'm a Patriots fan, so I know what it's like to cheer for a high octane, powerful offense. Until the last couple of seasons, the Patriots offense sat near the top of every statistical category for the main part of 15 years. One of the most important thing that all Patriots fans learned was that you can't sacrifice defense for offense and win championships. It will just leave you frustrated.
Also don't forget the Chiefs aren't drafting high, and even if they're not winning championships, if they're winning their divisions and making deep playoff runs, you're draft position doesn't get you the top end talent.
"Jones is arguably the best player on a defense that features multiple elite talents (a strange but true sentence to type). However, when examining the stats sheet after the Super Bowl, the casual observer might notice that he didn’t collect a sack or even a quarterback hit against the 49ers, and he was part of only a single tackle. It would be easy to think that his impact on the game was minimal given those numbers. The only hint at how important he was is that he had three passes-defended, which is a lot for a defensive lineman." - Seth Keysor
So, you may agree with me and think great, it's all figured out. The Chiefs can move on from Sammy Watkins and re-sign Chris Jones, and the Chiefs are fine because we still have Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, and Tyreek Hill.
Remember when Hill got injured at the beginning of the season and Watkins stepped in and played like a number one? What happens if Hill gets hurt again? Travis Kelce will be 31 next season, how much longer do you think he's still playing elite levels? Guys like Antonio Gates, Rob Gronkowski, and Travis Kelce don't grow on trees. And after the 2021 season, if he's still playing at these high levels, and has one more shot at free agency before his career is done, how much is he going to cost.
As it sits right now the Chiefs have over spent the cap in 2021 and that's without Mahomes extension. So more decisions are going to have to be made at the end of next season.