NFL

Why the Kansas City Chiefs should trade for Terry McLaurin

Washington Commanders wide receiver Terry McLaurin could be up for a trade soon — and the Kansas City Chiefs are poised to pick him up. 

In Washington, the scariest thing about Terry McLaurin is that he might be leaving the Commanders this season.

Another week of offseason workouts began, but Scary Terry didn’t take to the field with his teammates. McLaurin is reportedly holding out from mandatory minicamp as he negotiates for a new deal.

It’s not all that surprising: McLaurin has been virtually the only consistent offensive bright spot on a team that has struggled on every level for the past four years, from their front office to their stadium, and he hasn’t even earned $4 million. This season is set to be McLaurin’s big payday, and he’s only earning $2.8 million. In the three seasons prior, McLaurin made about $1 million as he broke 1,000 receiving yards in the past two seasons.

NFL.com data analyst Cynthia Frelund concluded that “McLaurin is the most underrated receiver in the entire league,” and she has the stats to prove it. “McLaurin earned the third most yards of separation on all routes run in 2021, per computer vision,” wrote Frelund. “His ability to run the complete route tree has led to him compiling the fifth most yards on in-breaking routes (angle, in, cross, post, slant) and the 11th most on deep passes since entering the league.”

Frelund makes a compelling case — McLaurin is a true star that seems to be systemically undervalued, both in the league and in D.C. Perhaps the Kansas City Chiefs could be the team to change that.

Why Commanders should consider trading Terry McLaurin to the Chiefs

With Tyreek Hill out of the picture, the Chiefs could use a speedy route-runner like McLaurin. Marquez Valdes-Scantling was a valuable signing, but he hasn’t proven to be the explosive playmaker that McLaurin has been on a lackluster Commanders offense.

It’s also worth noting that landing the 26-year-old McLaurin would likely be a long-term investment: if the Chiefs can afford to extend him, they’ll have one of the league’s most underrated players for years to come. For now, only Valdes-Scantling and Skyy Moore are signed past the 2022 season.

The Chiefs could afford to trade for McLaurin, considering that they have 12 picks to spare in 2023 as a result of the Tyreek Hill trade. The Hill trade also made plenty of room in their cap to sign McLaurin over the next few years.

The Terry McLaurin and Patrick Mahomes connection would be a nightmare for opposing defenses, yet McLaurin remains an undervalued gem in the NFL. If the Chiefs can swoop in and shine a light on his talents, perhaps they can truly replace Hill for a smaller price tag.


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