Chiefs' Derrick Johnson: Will hit free agency in March

The Chiefs announced Tuesday that Johnson would become an unrestricted free agent when his contract expires at the start of the new league year March 14.

Johnson was owed $8 million in 2018, but based on the terms of the restructured deal the veteran linebacker agreed to last offseason, the Chiefs had the luxury of voiding his contract without any consequences. After registering only 71 tackles in 2017 -- his second-lowest total for any season in which he played at least 13 games -- Johnson, who has spent his entire 13-year career in Kansas City, may have to settle for a part-time role regardless of where he lands in free agency. The Chiefs, meanwhile, will have to find a new starter at inside linebacker alongside Reggie Ragland during the upcoming season.

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