Posted March 14, 2013

Sean Smith signs with Kansas City Chiefs

Kansas City Chiefs, NFL Free Agency
Sean Smith flashes brilliance, but suffers from inconsistency. (AP)

Sean Smith flashes brilliance, but suffers from inconsistency. (AP)

A trade for Alex Smith and the re-signing of Dwayne Bowe naturally pointed a spotlight on the Kansas City Chiefs’ offense. Turns out, their defense might be pretty decent, too.

The Chiefs signed coveted free-agent cornerback Sean Smith to a three-year deal on Thursday, per his agent David Canter, adding him to their secondary just days after picking up Dunta Robinson. Those two veterans and incumbent starter Brandon Flowers to form one of the NFL’s better cornerback units, at least on paper.

There’s the rub, however, especially when it comes to Smith. The 25-year-old Smith, an imposing 6-foot-3 corner who excels in press coverage, appeared to be one of the better free agents available this offseason — Peter King ranked him No. 28 overall.

And Smith deserves that standing … when he plays up to his capabilities. How infrequently that happens, however, has been a frustrating reality thus far in Smith’s career.

Last season, for example, he turned in two interceptions while covering Larry Fitzgerald during an early-season game but finished the year ranked just 52nd among cornerbacks in coverage, according to Pro Football Focus.

The best news for Smith may be that Flowers ought to take some of the heat off him. Flowers ranked 9th in those PFF metrics in 2012 and has proven himself capable o the No. 1 CB spot.

The abilities of both Smith and Flowers to play one-on-one could free up the Chiefs’ safeties — Eric Berry and possibly Robinson, who either will defend the slot of slide to a free safety role next season.

Grade: B-plus. Smith reportedly will receive an average of $6 million over his three-season contract. That’s a respectable price tag on both sides, slightly above what Chris Houston and Derek Cox received Wednesday. While that all would help set the cornerback market, it also would put Smith in decent company.

Can he finally live up to his potential on a regular basis?

5 comments
Whatever
Whatever

Sean Smith is also a big guy who could slide over to handle TEs rather than have Eric Berry trying to cover them.

HarshRealities
HarshRealities

Everyone with needs and salary cap moves have made a lot of moves to bolster their team with the exception of the pitiful owners of the Tampa bay Bucs. Yeah, they made one splash with S Goldson but that is it. They need at least 1 and probably 2 CB's and have sat on their thumbs while all the good FA CB's have been signed by other teams. The Glazers' are a disgrace to the NFL and the NFL needs to force them to sell the team. The Glazers' only car about making money and the Bucs have been the most profitable team in the NFL by having the lowest payroll every year running for the last 6 years.

chenderson0328
chenderson0328

Love what the Chiefs are doing! Gone are the days of frugal spending under Pioli. Really looking forward to next season's team! 

Whatever
Whatever

 @KirbyMitchell Amen Bro! I was upset when they let him go in the first place. Never understood that move.