4 Free Agents Who Avoided Franchise Tag the Chiefs Should Target

Calvin Ridley had 1,016 yards and 8 TDs for the Jaguars this year
Calvin Ridley had 1,016 yards and 8 TDs for the Jaguars this year / Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA
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The franchise tag deadline has come and gone and now we're just waiting for the NFL's free agency period to officially open on March 13th. Kansas City placed the tag on L'Jarius Sneed, but many quality players are free to negotiate with other teams come next week.

I expect Brett Veach to be proactive in the free agency market. If the Chiefs do ultimately trade Sneed, they'll have a healthy amount of cap room pending a potential Chris Jones extension.

With that in mind, let's look at four free agents who didn't get the franchise tag applied to them that Kansas City needs to target when free agency opens up next week. The Chiefs are already +650 at FanDuel Sportsbook to win their third straight Super Bowl, meaning a $10 bet would profit $65. They're the second-biggest favorite, but these moves could push the team over the top.

4 Free Agents Who Avoided Franchise Tag the Chiefs Should Target

1. Calvin Ridley - WR

Ridley returned from over a year away from football to put up 76 catches (136 targets) for 1,016 yards for eight TDs with the Jaguars, who elected not to ensure he'd be on the team next year. It's possible the Jags and Ridley still agree on a long-term extension, but he's at least free to explore other options.

After missing out on Mike Evans, the Chiefs should go after Ridley if they truly want to target a top wide receiver. He's likely the best player left, and is only a few years removed from a 90-catch, 1,374-yard season with nine TDs. At 29-years-old, he'd be an excellent compliment to Rashee Rice and Travis Kelce stylistically.

One of the best route-runners in the NFL, Ridley can create separation effortlessly. We know Patrick Mahomes is one of the most accurate and gifted tight-window throwers in the league, what happens when you give him another weapon that makes those tight windows bigger routinely?

With a full offseason under Andy Reid and two years away from his absence, Ridley could explode and once again be one a top receivers.

He could demand a payday Brett Veach is unwilling to meet, though if there's interest on Ridley's end, he's a great player to target as the Chiefs seek the first three-peat in history.

Before the next player, take a moment to claim FanDuel Sportsbook's $150 sign-up bonus for any $5 winning bet today! If you deposit at least $10 and bet $5 or more on any game, you'll receive an additional $150 in bonus bets if your wager wins. Sign up for FanDuel now and let's get back to those free agents on the following page.