Chiefs give up far more for Frank Clark than they got for Dee Ford

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The Chiefs must think the pass rusher they just acquired is a lot better than the one they traded away.

Kansas City gave up a 2019 first-round pick and a 2020 second-round pick to acquire Frank Clark from the Seahawks. Previously this offseason, the Chiefs traded Dee Ford to the 49ers for a 2020 second-round pick.

Essentially, the Chiefs traded Dee Ford and a first-round pick to get Frank Clark. To give up a first-round pick rather than just keeping Ford, the Chiefs must think Clark is a lot better than Ford, even though Clark and Ford both had 13 sacks last season.

The Chiefs have gone through a major defensive overhaul this offseason, and it’s easy to see why: Their offense was great last year, but their defense couldn’t stop Tom Brady and company in the playoffs, keeping Kansas City out of the Super Bowl.

But it’s easy to wonder whether the Chiefs aren’t giving up too much to make these changes. They’re going to pay Clark a reported $105 million over five years, and give up a first-round pick and a second-round pick for the privilege of doing that. Compare that to the way the Lions upgraded at defensive end, by paying Trey Flowers $90 million over five years, and not giving up any draft picks to do it.

If Clark is an All-Pro and the Chiefs have a Super Bowl-caliber defense, all of this will be worth it. But that’s a big “if.”

38 responses to “Chiefs give up far more for Frank Clark than they got for Dee Ford

  1. Do they understand that scoring so quickly and often keeps their defense on the field a lot; thus even a great defense will never perform up to it’s potential?

  2. But by all means everyone, let’s all bag on Gruden and the Raiders because they must be the dummies making all the foolish trades.

  3. If they got him for only a second rounder, the contract kinda makes sense. If the contract was the same as Dee Ford’s, then the draft picks they gave up kinda make sense. But both? I’m guessing there will be more than a few anonymous GMs quoted saying this isn’t a great deal for the Chiefs.

  4. Dee Ford 2018 – 42 solo, 13 assists, 55 total tackles, 13 sacks, 13 TFL, 7 forced fumbles

    Frank Clark 2018 – 33 solo, 8 assists, 41 total tackles, 13 sacks, 10 TFL, 3 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries

    Not a big improvement that I can see.

  5. No disrespect meant to Dee Ford but he is 28 and Clark is 25. Frank Clark still has some major upside even though he had 13 sacks last year. Clark is also solid against the run.

    Only reason I am happy Seattle made the trade is the 20 million dollar a year price tag and this draft class being loaded with defensive lineman. Clark is ready to roll into his prime. Happy he got paid, he had no issues in Seattle and brought it every game.

  6. They’ll build a defense where 4 players get 75% of the defense funds and everyone else splits up what’s left.
    Then they have a cap nightmare when they need to give Mahomes the richest contract in NFL history, which means dismantling the defensive stars.
    Then they’re right back to a good offense and bargain basement defense.
    They’ve got something like a two-year window to get a ring before everything collapses.
    Makes you wonder how some teams win year after year by being well balanced.

  7. Dee Ford age 28, 5 yr career total- 31 Sacks, 136 tackles, 102 solo tackles, 34 Ast tackles, 8 Forced Fumbles, zero INT

    Frank Clark age 25, 4 yr career total- 36 Sacks, 137 tackles, 93 solo tackles, 44 Ast tackles, 8 Forced Fumbles, 1 INT

    Similar stats but Frank did his in 4 years and is only 25.

  8. the reason the chiefs got rid of Ford is because they had to decide between Tyreek Hill and Ford. They went with Hill, google it. they were about to give Hill this exact amount of money to make hill the highest paid WR. So they traded Ford and got good value. They likely spend the 1st round this year on a pass rusher.

    BUT then Hill got in trouble DAYS after the trade. this was a disaster for KC. they lost Ford and potentially Hill in a matter of days. total disaster. most of the free agent defensive ends had already signed contracts by the time this happened. Hill could be gone all of next year and possibly kicked out of the league.

    They had to make this move. Clark is younger, fits better in the new 4-3 anyways. the chiefs will use their 2nd rounder on a pass rusher to go with clark.

    They have one more year guaranteed without having to worry about the Mahomes contract. spend the money now and get it out of the way. i guarantee most of the money for clark is paid in the first 2 years of the deal in terms of cap.

  9. There has to be something more with Dee Ford otherwise this is an idiotic turn of DE events for the Chiefs… and people said Bob Quinn paid too much for Flowers, LOL

  10. I’ll admit I saw more of Ford than Clark over the last couple of years, but it doesn’t seem like enough of an upgrade to give up your first round pick. I’m not sure the contracts they signed are significantly different once you dig into the guarantees. Clark is a couple years younger.

  11. Totally agree with you u writer..KC is lost in the 60’s!!… Hyped up franchise.. Broncos and raiders have held down the SB’s for AFC west

  12. also, ford has back issues and played his tail off for his next contract. and oh yeah, he lined up offsides.

  13. The Chiefs defense actually did “stop Brady in the playoffs” but bonehead Dee Ford was a foot offsides. Clark was 10th in QB pressures the last 3 seasons. Dee Ford had ONE good season leading up to his contract year. Ford is undersized and not strong enough to play as a wide 9 DE in a 4-3 and is awful against the run. He’s also two years younger than Ford and as I mentioned before, more consistent in the last few years. The Chiefs see more upside and less limitations and cutting Houston and getting Alex Okafor and Emmanuel Ogbah, gives us far better run support. We also have Brendan Daly, who took a mediocre group of DL’s and dominated the playoffs. Spagnuolo’s Giants made the 18-0 Patriots look like a high school team. If we get a couple sleeper talents in the secondary in the draft and this defense could be top 10.

  14. Derrick Johnson is laughing at his former team. Next KC will trade Mahommes to Arizona straight up for Murray!

  15. “To give up a first-round pick rather than just keeping Ford, the Chiefs must think Clark is a lot better than Ford, even though Clark and Ford both had 13 sacks last season.”

    Dee Ford had 13 sacks last season with defenses having to account for Chris Jones and whatever was left of Justin Houston.

    Frank Clark had 13 sacks last season with defenses having to account for… Frank Clark.

  16. To make things worse, Frank Clark said that he had an injured arm (IIRC) during 2018. Dee Ford, in contrast, is not known to be injured. Clark also had off field personal conduct issues, and that was why he was not picked in the first round coming out of college.

  17. numbers were similar. Clark got his numbers on a much better defense with a defensive minding coach. A coach that could put him in better positions with more help. I will take Ford and a 1st.

  18. farewellfaircruelty says:
    April 23, 2019 at 3:51 pm
    At what point did the 18-0 Patriots “look like a high school team”? When they barely lost in the SB?
    Why do people who don’t watch football comment on it?


    If you watch (or remember) the last 2 throws to Randy Moss: First throw was close, 2nd throw was less than an inch. You don’t see this in any highlights nor is it ever talked about. I still think if Moss had laid out on the first pass, he would have caught it. The 2nd one, time would have run out. Catch either on the run, game over. I’m a Giants fan and that game wasn’t over until time expired.

    Maybe if Meriweather had not let Smith turn up-field for the 1st down before the Plax throw. Or if Samuel could catch. Or if Samuel and or Meriweather hadn’t let Harrison fight one on one with Tyree. A lot of things had to fall right for the Giants to win.

    I’m a Giants fan and they were lucky to escape that one. They actually had a much better team the next year but someone shot a gun off.

  19. I thought the chiefs were cleaning house on abusers, Clark beat his girlfriend to a pulp not more than a few years ago….

  20. Frank Clark is a better player than Dee Ford. At least he looks better to me. I still wouldn’t have given up a first rounder to get him though.

    As far as the price tag. It’s the going rate for premium pass rushers in their prime. The salary cap can accomodate it with a QB on a rookie deal. They’re smart to try to go for it now because if it doesn’t happen in the next two years, it’s going to be tough to do.

  21. It’s easy to tell who knows nothing about football. They think Frank Clark and Dee Ford are comparable players. Clark plays every game and can stop the run. Ford is always injured, and teams run at him on purpose, with much success. I’m not in love with the deal, but Dee Ford is a one hit wonder, coming off a contract year where he FINALLY played a full season. I do like that we can get out of the deal in 3 years though.

  22. Set the record perfectly straight in the totality of the Ford vs Clark and draft picks.
    Chiefs gets Clark, higher 2nd round pick in 2020, higher 3rd round pick in 2019.
    Seattle gets Chiefs 1st round pick, lower 3rd pick in 2019, lower of Chiefs two 2nd round picks in 2020.
    San Francisco gets Ford.

    I think the Chiefs got the better player, improved 2019 3rd round pick, and improved 2020 2nd round pick … but at the cost of a 2019 1st round pick.
    Not saying I love the deal … but in context, They improved two draft picks and got the better player.

  23. I also think Clark > Ford as a pass rusher in context of Ford having more than a 100 extra opportunities to rush the QB in 2018.

    Chiefs in shootouts allowed him to rush the opposing QB more.
    Seahawks running the ball gave Clark fewer rushes at the opposing QB.

    Ford was an obviously better player vs the run.

  24. Could have used those picks to move up and get a pass rusher. Then you have a guy on a rookie deal which the Chiefs could use given their cap situation.

  25. normswifevera says:
    April 23, 2019 at 4:09 pm
    “To give up a first-round pick rather than just keeping Ford, the Chiefs must think Clark is a lot better than Ford, even though Clark and Ford both had 13 sacks last season.”

    Dee Ford had 13 sacks last season with defenses having to account for Chris Jones and whatever was left of Justin Houston.

    Frank Clark had 13 sacks last season with defenses having to account for… Frank Clark.
    Do you even watch the Seahawks? Wagner had 138 tackles and Reed had 10.5 sacks last year as a DT. Not as a DE lining up outside like Clark. Earl Thomas had 3 interceptions in 4 games before getting hurt. Yup, all defenses had to account for was Clark.

  26. With Chris Jones due to get paid as well, Mahomes dur to be paid in 2 years or less, and with Tyreke looking at a suspension… this would seem to guarantee Hill won’t see a 2nd contract in KC.

    KC also has 2 less top picks to play at reasonable rookie salaries, so this is an interesting decision. Cap should keep going up, but still a lot of cash going to just a few players in 2-3 years.

  27. @whostolemyxanax…

    They gave up a 2020 2nd round pick, which most teams would equate to a 2018 3rd rounder considering most would believe KC will make the playoffs in 2019.

    That would have maybe got them to trade up from 29 to 20-23 at best. Tennessee picks at 19, so what pass rusher is slipping past 10-12 teams in the top 19 picks that cpuld use a quality pass rusher on the edge???

  28. Be nervous Chiefs fans. This looks very similar to Andy’s tenure in Philly when he could not get over the playoff hump, went all in with the Dream Team and nuked everything. He is destined to be the Greatest Coach to Ever NOT Win a Super Bowl.

  29. KC spent a high 1st and a high 2nd round pick for a proven, younger, productive veteran edge rusher who can play the run as ferociously as he can swarm the QB.

    That’s a win, however you count it.

    They still have a pair of 2nd’s this year and a nice third round (84th pick) this year and all of their picks next year (except their high 2nd) plus the 49ers most likely lower 2nd round pick.

    Heh, maybe Veach can cough up that 2nd rounder next year for Patrick Peterson yet, and cement the defense before this year’s draft.

    KC still has the capital to grab 3 nice players on Friday evening to bolster tight end, cornerbacks and O-line.

  30. That contract though…

    Lots of good Arguments for Frank in the Chiefs making a play for him in terms of what kind of play area is but as soon as you start talking about the contract that they gave him it all starts falling apart for me.

    That’s close to QB money. Only absolutely dominant defensive forces like Cortez Kennedy and Lawrence Taylor should be getting quarterback money.

    Aaron Donald and Khalil Mack and that’s about it in my opinion the next guys on the list should be 5 million or more less.

    I just read in a different article that Big Ben got his new contract and somehow being higher-paid than Kirk Cousins was important to him. Ego driven contract negotiations…good times.

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