So much for playing it safe and waiting for the top free agents to sign with other teams, the Kansas City Chiefs might be very close to a deal that would land stud middle linebacker Jeremiah Trotter to help shore up their ailing defense.
As of yesterday, he and his agent broke off talks with the Eagles and quickly turned their attention to the Kansas City Chiefs. He is in town to meet with the Chiefs coaches and ESPN is reporting it's all but a done deal.
Now negotiations could hit a snag but Kansas City seems pretty intent on trying to lure the former Eagles linebacker. Last season Trotter rejoined Philadelphia after two seasons in Washington.
But Warpaint Illustrated just talked to a Chiefs official this afternoon and Trotter and the Chiefs have yet to talk contract. In fact, he is not in town according to that official. He is scheduled to come in on Thursday or Friday to meet with the Chiefs.
Last season Trotter anchored the middle of the Eagles defense and he showed the skill that landed him a big free agent contract with the Redskins in 2003. Now he appears very close to a new deal that will make him a member of the Kansas City Chiefs.
Last year he had 69 tackles and was a beast in the post season. Though he only had one sack his specialty is making sure handed tackles and not many running backs gain large chunks of yards when Trotter has them in his sights. Of his 69 tackles, 60 of them were of the solo variety.
Trotter if signed would become the Chiefs starter at middle linebacker and Scott Fujita would project to play outside. But he might not be the only linebacker the Chiefs attempt to sign in free agency. Warpaint Illustrated has learned that Baltimore Raven linebacker Ed Hartwell would like to make a visit to Kansas to shore up one of the other linebacker slots. In four years with the Ravens playing alongside Ray Lewis, he amassed 230 tackles with 107 of them solo tackles. He like Trotter are both sure handed tacklers and too many times last season; the Chiefs linebackers could not make plays in the open field. Both of these guys could do that for the Chiefs.
With the injury to Shawn Barber and the fact he could be out until midway through the 2005 season, the Chiefs do not have anyone else that can play his position. It's also not known if linebacker Mike Maslowski will be able to get back on the field after experimental knee surgery.
As for cornerback Samari Rolle, reports have also surfaced of his desire to be reunited with Chiefs Defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham. Rolle spurned an offer from the Redskins on Monday but depending on who you speak with in regards to the alleged offer, the numbers were not to either sides taste.
Rolle would become a starter opposite Eric Warfield but if they can land Rolle, then they could search for a nickel back in what appears to be a bumper crop of free agent cornerbacks on the open market.
Stay tuned to Warpaint Illustrated for more news in regards to the Chiefs and their free agent shopping.