The Kansas City Chiefs traded Tyreek Hill to create cap space and that financial flexibility could prove crucial as the club pursues free-agent cornerback Stephon Gilmore.
Gilmore, a five-time Pro Bowl selection, is the best available defensive back in NFL free agency. Entering his age-32 season, the 6-foot-1 cornerback is looking for the right opportunity to play with a contender after spending a majority of the 2021 season with the Carolina Panthers.
According to NFL insider Jordan Schultz, the Chiefs are in active communications with Gilmore about a potential deal.
- Stephon Gilmore career stats: 116 pass deflections, 27 interceptions
Gilmore would provide much-needed help for Kansas City’s secondary. While cornerback Rashad Fenton played well this past season, the Chiefs lost both Charvarius Ward and Mike Hughes to the open market. It’s created two voids at corner with less than a month until the 2022 NFL Draft.
Gilmore is no longer a shutdown corner who would be among the highest paid players in the NFL. However, he is still fully capable of playing at a high level. According to Pro Football Focus, Gilmore surrendered just an 80.7 passer rating when targeted this past season and only allowed 15 receptions in 172 coverage snaps.
One other name to keep in mind, per Schultz, is cornerback James Bradberry. He struggled in 2021, but the New York Giants are open to dealing him. Just a year removed from a 2020 Pro Bowl selection, he would also address one of the Chiefs’ primary needs.