The Kansas City Chiefs have been making some shocking moves this offseason. They have traded starting quarterback Alex Smith to the Washington Redskins, and followed that head scratcher up by shipping cornerback Marcus Peters to the L.A. Rams in exchange for a handful of future picks. Although neither of these trades can become official until the new NFL season begins on March 14, they raise serious questions about what Chiefs management is doing.
It Peters’ case, they just got rid of a 25-year-old Pro Bowler who already has 19 career interceptions, the most in the league since he became a starter. Oddly enough, Sports Illustrated is reporting that only three teams were even interesting in acquiring Peters, with a lot of the blame being placed on his continued protest of the national anthem before games.
From Peter King of SI:
“I’m told the Chiefs called all 31 other teams in the league this month on Peters, looking for a trade partner, and 28 teams either said they were not interested or did not make an offer of any value. For a player with the playing history of Peters at a vital and hard-to-fill position, that’s amazing.
“Peters’ behavior had become erratic, apparently, capped by the Week 13 meltdown in the Meadowlands. The Chiefs decided they couldn’t trust his behavior anymore and, despite his playmaking ability, felt whatever they could fetch for him in trade would be better than Peters returning in 2018.
“His protests during the national anthem didn’t help—at various points he raised his fist, sat on the bench and stayed in the locker room—but weren’t the driving force behind a trade.
“Peters loves football. He practiced hard in Kansas City. But his tendency to lose it was a divisive part of his résumé too, and a big reason why the Chiefs dumped him.”
The report goes on to state that Chiefs owner Clark Hunt personally spoke to Peters about the anthem controversy, encouraging them to stand but also trying to not make it into a big incident. Peters wasn’t having it, though, responding in a defiant way.
“Nobody’s gotta know my reason why I sit,” Peters said. “Nobody’s gotta know the reason why somebody chooses the religion they choose. Nobody’s gotta know why I eat cereal instead of eating oatmeal in the morning.”