One of the strongest assets of the Kansas City Chiefs is its talented young secondary. The potential of the unit isn't just a locally known and appreciated group, but nationally names like Brandon Flowers and Eric Berry have earned the respect of many. Brandon Carr is continually listed on lists of underrated defensive players who could break through and Kendrick Lewis was a great surprise as a fifth round choice. It's a young, athletic group with potential impact players at multiple positions.
But the depth in the secondary could perhaps use some work. The Chiefs have been flirting with Sabby Piscitelli, the former Tampa Bay Buccaneer who has certainly taken his licks in the media. They're also converting wide receiver and former sixth round choice Quinten Lawrence to defensive back. Other names include Ricky Price and Donald Washington. While Scott Pioli and Todd Haley might see some possibilities here, the Chiefs might be interested in another name.
That name could be one Pioli is already familiar with. James Sanders was surprisingly released by the Patriots on Monday, and Pioli will be very familiar with his former starting safety in New England. It's clear that the roster cut came early for Sanders so that he can catch on with a new club, and several are already reportedly interested, including the Atlanta Falcons. But it's also natural to link Sanders to the guy who chose him in the first place, especially since Sanders still supposedly has plenty left in the tank.
Last season, at age 27, Sanders started 9 games at safety for the Pats and played in 15. He's started 48 games for the Patriots over the last 5 seasons and has 190 tackles and 7 interceptions in that span. Last year, he had 40 tackles and 3 INT.
The Boston Herald's Karen Guregian believes the Pats wanted to put pressure on Brandon Meriweatherr to step up with the move. She writes, "The Patriots yesterday said goodbye to James Sanders, their best communicator in the defensive backfield, a guy who was a stabilizing influence on younger players, a guy who was essentially Brandon Meriweather’s security blanket." While her main subject was Meriweather, it's clear she believes Sanders was still an asset on the field.
The Chiefs could possibly add Sanders to add depth to the secondary while also adding a valuable veteran presence and voice to such a young core. Having a player like Sanders around could pay dividends not only on the field but alongside second year starters like Lewis and Berry.