Chiefs owner Clark Hunt believes he has a good team on his hands, and doesn’t think they need a major overhaul in order to compete for a title.
During a radio interview with WHB in Kansas City, Hunt said last week that he thought the Chiefs were capable of contending for a Super Bowl, and injuries leading into their playoff loss to the Patriots underscored the importance of earning a bye.
“I do think we have a lot of the ingredients that you need in order to make it to the Super Bowl, namely a great head coach and his coaching staff, a quality quarterback and a tough defense,” Hunt said, via Adam Teicher of ESPN.com. “I think we have those ingredients and we have a lot of players who are entering the prime of their careers, and hopefully we’ll be playing in Super Bowl 51 next year.’’
Of course, there’s plenty of work to be done before then, as they have 15 unrestricted free agents, a list topped by Pro Bowler linebackers Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson and safety Eric Berry.
“Free agency and the [salary] cap are a challenge each year,’’ Hunt said. “We have a number of free agents this year, important players. We are in pretty good cap shape, maybe the best cap shape we’ve been in for a few years. Certainly getting those players re-signed is going to be a big priority for us here over the next couple of months.’’
Other than the big names, the Chiefs also have several other free agents worth retaining, including cornerback Sean Smith, defensive lineman Jaye Howard and offensive lineman Jeff Allen. And if they’re going to keep the band together, they have a lot of work to do between now and the start of free agency.