The Kansas City Chiefs need help at cornerback and Trae Waynes could likely be had for the right price.
The Kansas City Chiefs were as close as possible to reaching the Super Bowl last season without actually making it. They lost a heartbreaker at home to the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game, with their defense letting them down at the end of the game.
Patrick Mahomes is back to lead their dynamic offense, but there are still major questions on the defensive side of the ball. Kansas City did a nice job of remaking their defense this offseason, switching to a 4-3 under new defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo and adding impact players like Frank Clark and Tyrann Mathieu.
When it comes down to it, the Chiefs defense should be greatly improved in 2019, but there is certainly still some room for improvement. In particular, the cornerback position stands out as a work in progress.
Kendall Fuller and Bashaud Breeland stand out as a solid starting cornerback duo for the Kansas City Chiefs. However, their depth at the position is lacking, with guys like Charvarius Ward and Tremon Smith expected to play major roles again.
In a perfect world, the Chiefs would be able to knock Ward and Smith down the depth chart a bit and add another starting caliber cornerback to the mix. Fuller’s versatility to play inside and outside gives them a lot of options to improve here. Looking throughout the league, the Minnesota Vikings look like a logical trade partner for the Chiefs, with Trae Waynes standing out as a realistic target.
More from NFL Mocks
- New England Patriots: Mac Jones drawing praise after day one
- Jacksonville Jaguars: WR position will be wild training camp battle
- Houston Texans: Tyrod Taylor leading the first-team offense at camp
- New York Jets: Zach Wilson contract situation is disappointing
- Tennessee Titans: Anthony Firkser a breakout candidate in 2021
The Vikings are loaded with strong depth at the cornerback position. Waynes is joined on the depth chart by Xavier Rhodes, Mackensie Alexander, Mike Hughes and Holton Hill, all of who can play the position at a high level. Simply put, the Vikings can afford to move one of these players and not lose significant depth. With Waynes entering the last year of his rookie contract, it would make sense to move him in the right deal.
Waynes has been a full-time contributor for the Vikings throughout his four-year NFL career. He is a freak athlete on the outside who shows tremendous natural speed and great length at the position. He is a stick man-to-man defender who can shut down the deep passing game on his side of the field and uses his length well to attack the ball in the air.
Simply put, he is a good NFL cornerback who would immediately be an important part of the Kansas City Chiefs secondary. If they were able to land Waynes, he would immediately start opposite of Fuller. In nickel packages, Fuller could kick inside with Waynes and Breeland taking care of the outside receivers. The Chiefs’ cornerback situation could immediately become a strength for the team.
As far as logistics of the trade go, Kansas City appears to have plenty of cap space remaining to absorb the just over $9 million owed to Waynes in 2019. They could use the upcoming season to determine whether Waynes is worth a contract extension or not.
Giving up quality draft capital to acquire him and then potentially watching him leave would be tough, but the Kansas City Chiefs are in win-now mode. These are the kinds of moves that could put them over the top and are undoubtedly worth exploring. As long as the Vikings were willing to part with Waynes at a fair price, this would be a logical move for Kansas City.