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Chiefs using franchise tag on Dee Ford is ‘on the table’

dee ford

The Kansas City Chiefs look set to hand long-term deals to star receiver Tyreek Hill and defensive tackle Chris Jones this offseason. But what about Dee Ford, who has blossomed as a premier edge rusher this season?

According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, it’s very much “on the table” for the Chiefs to use the franchise tag on Ford, who is in the final year of his rookie contract and is headed into free agency.

Ford, the team’s first-round pick back in 2014, had a career year in 2018. He played all 16 games for the first time since his rookie year and registered 13 sacks, 55 tackles, and seven forced fumbles — all new career-highs.

The Chiefs defense hasn’t been the best this season, but the pass rush has been pretty effective. Ford has formed quite a formidable pass rush trio for the Chiefs with veteran outside linebacker Justin Houston on the opposite side and Jones up the middle.

With looming deals for Hill, Jones, and eventually, superstar QB Patrick Mahomes II, the Chiefs are going to be very expensive to keep intact in the next few years. That’s why it’s unlikely for Ford to get a lucrative long-term deal from the team. He might not even be with the team next season if the Chiefs take the expensive tag off the table.

If Ford does hit the open market this offseason, he’ll likely be in line for quite a big payday given the demand for premium pass rushers around the league, especially on the edge.