The Chiefs are gearing up for another run at the Super Bowl, and a potential superstar may be on the market. Despite Deandre Hopkins being released and free to sign with any team, as the days go by it seems less and less likely he will ultimately be a Chief. However, there is one player on the trade market who could take the Chiefs to another level. That player is Chase Young of the Washington Commanders.
So, why would the Commanders be willing to deal a potential superstar pass-rusher, who is entering the prime years of his career? The simple answer is money. Both Young and MoMontezweat are entering contract years, and it is unlikely the team can bring back both next season. On top of that, the Commanders are getting new ownership and may not want to pay a player who has had a disappointing career after his stellar rookie year. Of course, the reason Young has taken a downward trajectory is due to injury, but that could also play a factor in this whole situation.
Should The Chiefs Pounce?
From a talent perspective there is no doubt that the Chiefs should pounce on the chance to get a player of Young’s caliber. Young was taken at pick 2 overall for a reason, and the Chiefs will likely never get a chance to take a player that high as long as Mahomes is on the roster. Not to mention assistant defensive coach Joe Cullen is a mastermind of the defensive line, and if anyone can revive Chase Young’s career and use him to his maximum capability it is Cullen. Which begs the question, is the price right?
There are really two questions that need to be answered. One, what is the short-term cost? Two, what is the long term cost? The Chiefs will have to give up capital in order to obtain Young, but they will also have to pay to extend him, unless they plan on using him as a one-year rental, or applying the franchise tag after the season. The Commanders are likely asking for at least a first-round pick, and likely more in exchange for Young. Giving up that sort of capital for a one-year deal is not a good move for the Chiefs who are trying to build a long-term dynasty.
If the Chiefs and Young can agree on a long-term deal before the trade, then I would absolutely give up a first-round pick, and maybe even more if I was in the shoes of Brett Veach. What is a single first-round pick compared to the potential upside that Young brings to the table? The last time the Chiefs made a blockbuster trade for a defensive end on the end of his rookie deal it led them to two Super Bowl titles.
The tricky part is managing the cap. Young currently carries a cap hit of over $10 million this season, and the Chiefs have less than $2 million currently. Everyone believes the Chris Jones extension is coming, and perhaps it could open the door to this move, instead of the highly speculated Deandre Hopkins move. The other downside to this trade is it likely means the end of fan favorites in Willie Gay Jr. and L’Jarius Sneed. The Chiefs cannot afford to pay everyone, and Young would take precedent over those two, especially in a scenario in which the Chiefs give up a first-round pick.
In the end, if I were in the shoes of Brett Veach, I would be calling Washington non-stop until Chase Young was a Chief. Yes, the Chiefs have invested in the position already, but you can never have too many players capable of rushing the passer, and Young could be a foundational piece moving forwards.