Will Chris Jones join rivals Raiders after Chiefs franchise tag missed?

After a contentious offseason marked by skipped practices and hefty fines, Chris Jones eventually joined the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 2. His presence transformed the team’s defensive dynamics, which struggled in his absence during the season opener.

Nevertheless, though Patrick Mahomes secured his job after back-to-back Super Bowl victories, Jones still awaits contract assurances. Amidst his ongoing contract drama, analysts speculate on potential moves, with one suggesting the vet defensive lineman could join one of the Chiefs’ divisional rivals.

Is Chris Jones going to join Raiders?

As the NFL free agency approaches, speculation surrounds the future of Chris Jones with the Chiefs. NFL Network insider Mike Garafolo recently weighed in on the situation during an episode of “The NFL Report.” Garafolo hinted at the possibility that Jones might not remain with the Chiefs but could stay within the AFC West by signing with the Las Vegas Raiders. 

Garafolo suggested that the three-time Super Bowl winner could find a new home within the AFC West due to multiple teams in the division seeking defensive line reinforcements.

“Listen, he may stay in the AFC West, James (Palmer). Multiple teams in the AFC West need help on defensive line. I’m just saying, the place that he played his last game with the Chiefs, maybe he’ll play his first game with somebody else. I don’t know. I’m just saying. I’m just trying to find a way to allude that it’s not the Raiders that I’m talking about.”

On Twitter, a user tagged Jones in a tweet expressing strong sentiments about his potential departure, warning against joining a particular team. In response, Jones opted for a simple handshake emoji.

Jones played a pivotal role in the Chiefs’ defense, contributing significantly to their success in the last season. He totaled 30 tackles and 10.5 sacks and made multiple key plays during the postseason to help the Chiefs win their second straight Super Bowl.

Chris Jones untagged by Chiefs

With options on hand, the Chiefs have taken decisive steps to secure their defensive assets, including placing the franchise tag on L’Jarius Sneed. Nevertheless, with the March 5 deadline passing, the Chiefs chose not to use the tag on Chris Jones. It allowed the star defensive player to enter the free agency market once the legal tampering window opens on March 11.

While the 25-year-old would undoubtedly be a highly sought-after player in this year’s free-agent class, there’s speculation that he could remain with the Chiefs if the team offers a suitable contract. According to ESPN‘s Jeremy Fowler, reaching a salary range of $27 million to $28 million per year could be pivotal in sealing the deal.

However, Fowler emphasized that the Chiefs have some work to do, considering Jones could potentially command higher figures if he explores the open market. Meanwhile, amidst the Chiefs’ celebration parade, Jones took the microphone to state his strong desire to continue with the Chiefs. Soon after the season, the team also took the contract option of him.

With an impressive resume that includes three Super Bowl championships, five Pro Bowl selections, and five All-Pro honors, Jones stands as a cornerstone for the Chiefs’ defense.

Despite the looming uncertainty, there remains a sense of optimism among Chiefs fans that the team will find a way to retain Jones.

Shabiha Akter

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Shabiha, once a casual observer, has morphed into a die-hard NFL fan. She carefully dissects every play, trade, and strategy. Whether it's breaking down game highlights or predicting playoff outcomes, Shabiha is your go-to source for all things NFL.

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