Chiefs reportedly open to trading Alex Smith after season: Top five landing spots
Alex Smith could be playing for his third team in seven seasons in 2018
If any team out there is looking for a playoff-caliber quarterback, you might want to give the Chiefs a phone call this offseason. It appears that they'll be more than willing to dump Alex Smith for the right price.
According to NFL.com, the Chiefs will be "open" to trading Smith once their season is over, which shouldn't come as a huge shock since the team has Patrick Mahomes waiting in the wings. Of course, the Chiefs aren't just going to give Smith away, but they are going to listen to offers, and it sounds like they'll pull the trigger if they're blown away by something.
One thing to keep in mind here is that just because the team is open to trading Smith doesn't mean it's going to happen. The NFL.com report does note that the Chiefs will likely hang on to their starting quarterback if he leads them to Super Bowl LII. To do that, Smith will have to something that he's never done in his Chiefs career: win a playoff game in Kansas City.
In four seasons with the Chiefs, Smith is 1-3 in the postseason, which includes an 0-1 record at home. Although Smith has been an above-average quarterback in Kansas City, that success hasn't translated to the postseason, which is a big reason why the team has been looking to move on from him.
The Chiefs host the Titans on Saturday in a wild-card game and if they come away with the win, it will be the franchise's first home playoff win since January 1994.
If the Chiefs do end up trading Smith, he would be an instant upgrade at quarterback for multiple teams in the NFL. After all, he led the NFL in QB rating in 2017, was second in yards per attempt and threw fewer interceptions than any other quarterback who started 15 games or more. He's also under contract for just $17 million price, which is a very reasonable price for a starting quarterback of Smith's caliber.
So which teams might be interested in Smith?
1. Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals have a lethal offense led by David Johnson, and Smith might actually be a better fit in Arizona than Palmer was. One thing Palmer always struggled with was keeping the play alive. In the 2017 season, Palmer rushed for just 12 yards, which is basically nothing compared to Smith, who rushed for 355.
According to NFL.com, Cardinals general manager Steve Keim tried to trade for Smith in 2013, so it wouldn't be a shock to see them make another run at Smith in 2018.
2. Cleveland Browns
If there's one person who definitely appreciates Smith's value, it's new Browns general manager John Dorsey. One of Dorsey's first moves as Kansas City's general manager in 2013 was to facilitate the trade the ended up sending Smith from San Francisco to the Chiefs.
It's not crazy to think that Dorsey might try and pull off a similar trade now that he's in Cleveland. Back in 2013, the Chiefs gave up two second-round picks to land Smith from the 49ers. If Dorsey wants to pull off a similar deal, he'll have plenty of draft ammo to make the move.
Also, if the Browns bring in Smith, they could actually draft a quarterback and not have to throw him into the fire by starting him during his rookie year.
3. Jacksonville Jaguars
It's almost scary to think about how good the Jaguars would be if they got anything resembling consistent play from the quarterback position.
Although Blake Bortles was good during spurts in 2017, he was mostly the Blake Bortles that we've come to know. Bortles closed the season with five interceptions over the Jags' final two games, which probably didn't exactly raise anyone's confidence in him going into 2018.
If the Jags land Smith, they would become an instant Super Bowl contender in 2018.
4. Washington Redskins
Having Smith as a starter in 2018 would actually be cheaper for the Redskins. Although Cousins is expected to sign a deal that will likely pay him $25 million or more next season, Smith is under contract for just $17 million in 2018.
5. Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings are going to have some serious decisions to make at quarterback this offseason, and trading for Smith could potentially be one of them.
Although the Vikings currently have three quarterbacks on their roster in Case Keenum, Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater, all three of them are slated to be free agents in 2018, which means coach Mike Zimmer can take his quarterback search in whichever direction he chooses.
The Vikings have one of the best defenses in the NFL and adding Smith to this offense would likely make the Vikings a Super Bowl favorite in 2018.
Wild Card: Denver Broncos
According to NFL.com, the Broncos are already considering making a move to land Smith, but you have to think that unless they blow the Chiefs away with an offer, there's probably a zero percent chance that this trade happens.
Trading away a playoff-caliber quarterback is one thing, trading him away to a division rival is another thing altogether and something that Andy Reid probably wouldn't do.
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