Chiefs bringing back LB Drue Tranquill on 3-year, $19 million deal, AP source says

Thu, Mar 7, 2024
NFL News (AP)

Chiefs bringing back LB Drue Tranquill on 3-year, $19 million deal, AP source says

The Kansas City Chiefs are bringing back versatile linebacker Drue Tranquill on a three-year, $19 million contract, a person with knowledge of the agreement told The Associated Press on Thursday night.

The person requested anonymity because the team had not announced the contract.

Tranquill signed with the Chiefs relatively late last offseason after spending the previous four years with the AFC West rival Los Angeles Chargers. But rather than an afterthought, Tranquill emerged as an important contributor for the league's second-ranked defense, making 4 1/2 sacks and helping to fill in as a starter while Nick Bolton was out with an injury.

Tranquill, who will turn 29 in August, was at his best in the playoffs, making four tackles apiece in the wild-card and divisional rounds before making eight stops in the AFC championship game against Baltimore. He also had a pair of assists in the Super Bowl, when the Chiefs rallied to force overtime against San Francisco and then won their second straight Lombardi Trophy.

"Unfinished business," Tranquill wrote in a social media post Thursday.

The Chiefs have a number of decisions to make if they want to return one of the NFL's best defenses largely intact, and the first big one came earlier this week, when they used the franchise tag on L'Jarius Sneed.

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Sneed arguably would have been the top cornerback in free agency, and now he faces the prospect of playing next season on a $19.8 million deal with Kansas City if the sides are unable to work out a long-term contract. The Chiefs also could trade him to a team willing to give him that lucrative contract in return for draft picks and salary cap relief.

The other big decision facing Kansas City is whether to give All-Pro pass rusher Chris Jones the long-term deal he desires after failing to reach an agreement the past two offseasons. Jones held out all of last offseason and through the Chiefs' Week 1 loss to Detroit before ultimately signing a revised one-year agreement so that he would get back on the field.

As those two situations play out, the Chiefs have other moves to make on the defensive side of the ball. They must decide whether to re-sign or replace safety Mike Edwards, who became an important player alongside Justin Reid after Bryan Cook sustained a season-ending injury. Willie Gay Jr. is due to hit free agency after proving to be the Chiefs' most athletic linebacker. And defensive linemen Tershawn Wharton, Derrick Nnadi and Mike Danna also are becoming free agents.

In the meantime, the Chiefs made sure Tranquill will be back as they chase a third straight Super Bowl title.

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