Kansas City, like every other NFL franchise, is in the market for an edge rusher, someone to come in from OLB/DE position, a la Wallace Gilberry, and provide a competent rush option on passing downs. Some experts think the Chiefs might find their man in a recent cut from general manager Scott Pioli’s old stomping grounds.
The New England Patriots recently informed Tully Banta-Cain that he’s going to be released on Thursday when moves can be official. This means the former Cal product is going to be an unrestricted free agent, adding another solid pass rush option on the market. Given the connections with Pioli at the helm, it’s easy to make a connection that Banta-Cain would join the Chiefs.
Banta-Cain had 5 sacks last year and 10 in 2009, so his pass rushing abilities are still apparent. He does have an injury to his abdomen that reports say will keep him out for up to five weeks, which means he might not be ready for the first week of the regular season. Given his previous production, however, the risk is still worth the signing.
If Banta-Cain is added on the line, that brings up questions about other free agents like Shaun Smith. The Chiefs are reloading their line with Jerrelle Powe and Allen Bailey already, and adding Banta-Cain would only strengthen the depth along the front seven.