The Kansas City Chiefs have signed QB Nick Foles to a contract after he was released by the Los Angeles Rams and then drew interest from the Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings. This is a great move by the Chiefs but for a team that already has two backups is there more to this story?
The Chiefs are led by former top pick Alex Smith, and while he has led the Chiefs to two playoff appearances during his three years as the starter, they may have gone as far as he can lead them. With Foles coming over, training camp just got a bit more interesting for the Chiefs. Remember Foles is a product of Reid, he was taken in the 3rd round in 2012 by Reid when Reid was the HC of the Philadelphia Eagles. As Reid had stated he saw something in the kid that made him believe he could be a star and when Reid left Philly, he tried to trade for Foles but with no such luck. Now they’re reunited.
To think Smith’s job is on solid ground would make you the worst football fan in the world. Yes, those playoffs appearances are great, but those offensive rankings are a coaches nightmare. The Chiefs have been lucky as they were able to ride the backs of RB Jamaal Charles and a great defense, but if the game calls for an offensive explosion from their QB, they are in trouble. The knock on Smith has been his inability to get the ball downfield and Reid loves to air it out when he can. He was missing that go-to receiver, but he now has that in another former Eagle, Jeremy Maclin.
Maclin caught a team-leading 87 receptions for 1088 yards and 8 TDs last season, and while good numbers, it still screams 2nd option and that falls on the shoulders of the QB. In 2015 Smith’s highest passing game went for 348 yards, but he was only able to crack 200+ yards six times during the regular season in 470 passing attempts. Either they are run heavy, or Reid does not have faith in Smith’s ability. I believe it to be the latter.
Everyone remembers the one-year wonder that is Foles and what he was able to accomplish in Chip Kelly’s offense with the 27 TDs and 2 INTs in 2013. He started the season in 2014 but struggled before going down with an injury but he and Maclin built a chemistry, and now they may have a chance to rekindle that. Or it could be that Reid just wants a veteran backup after losing Chase Daniels to the Eagles in the offseason, that’s very likely.
Foles should enter camp with nothing on his mind but competition for the starting spot. You can say what you want about Reid, but he has a great eye for talent, and he saw something in Foles in 2012 to take him in the 3rd round, now he gets another chance to turn the kid into a star. Just so happens it may be at the expense of his starting QB.