Bashaud Breeland re-signs with Chiefs after meeting a surprisingly underwhelming free agent market

Bashaud Breeland has decided to stay with the team he helped become Super Bowl champs for the first time in five decades. The veteran cornerback became an unrestricted free agent in 2020, but he remained unsigned through the first several waves of the annual frenzy — becoming one of the more underrated free agent talents still on the market. That’s no longer the case though, with Breeland reportedly having re-signed with the Kansas City Chiefs on a one-year deal worth $4.5 million, per Rob Demovsky of ESPN.

This is Breeland’s second contract with the team after fulfilling a one-year deal signed in 2019, and one that saw him play in every single game for the Chiefs. It’s also a pay raise when considering he earned roughly $2 million last season, but after having gone on to deliver two interceptions in the regular season and a third that helped Kansas City seal the coffin closed on the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV, the pay increase is justified. Retaining the 28-year-old also relieves pressure for the Chiefs to address the position in the 2020 NFL Draft, a need that would’ve buoyed to one of their top needs had Breeland gone elsewhere. 

Breeland’s presence opposite Charvarius Ward was key in seeing the Chiefs secondary take a championship-caliber step forward in 2019. A takeaway-thirsty defensive back, Breeland also recovered two fumbles last season, and turned one of them into a 100-yard defensive touchdown against the Detroit Lions. 

The move to restructure the deal on wideout Sammy Watkins helped clear the way for this move. Prior to that being done, Watkins was set to hit the Chiefs salary cap for $21 million in 2020, and while the team could’ve cleared $14 million by releasing him, they instead agreed to a restructured contract that created $5 million in cap space — having only $177 in cap space before altering Watkins’ deal. Breeland’s contract now eats up 90 percent of the gains from the Watkins move, which makes it rather clear who the Chiefs were eyeing when they sat down with Watkins to move money around.

The former fourth-round pick played several seasons with the Washington Redskins and one with the Green Bay Packers before finding a home in Kansas City, which is where he’ll now be until at least 2021.

Source link