Brett Veach explains why chefs can thrive without Tyreek Hill
Draft ratings from national pundit leaders were mostly good, but some thought Kansas City should have found a replacement for wide receiver Tyreek Hill.
But is it possible to find someone who can duplicate the special skills that Hill possesses? Hill, who was traded to the Miami Dolphins in March, was selected for the Pro Bowl in each of his six seasons with the Chiefs and was three times All-Pro.
Chiefs General Manager Brett Veach was on “The Rich Eisen Show” Friday and acknowledged that Hill’s departure will take something away from the Chiefs’ offense.
But Veach also noted that opposing teams had adjusted their defenses by using shell covers to limit Hill’s impact, and the Chiefs’ offense could be fine in the end.
“It would be a little crazy to think that, as you mentioned, when you take one of the most dynamic players of the last decade… out of attack, some of our styles of play will definitely be a little different” , Veach said. . “However, I’m not sure that’s a bad thing. I think when Pat came on the scene as a freshman starter in RPO and vertical play, teams took a while to catch up to that and we were able to just tear up the field, score a lot of points. And there were a lot of tweaks and cover looks and now some of them we’ve seen over and over again.
“But I think what’s cool about it is you know when you’ve got somebody like (quarterback) Pat Mahomes and you have the creativity of an Andy Reed and an Eric Bieniemy, I think that’s exciting. New challenges are always exciting. So are we going to look exactly alike? No, but we’ve said it many times, there are many ways to score points and move the ball around the field.
“So I think the approach this offseason is we’re going to have some basic fundamentals that we always have and we’ll be looking to execute on them. But I think it’s an exciting new challenge to get that new core receivers… and you can see a little more running but you can see a little more short game stuff but I think it’s exciting I think chess is always exciting I think that we have very good chess players with Andy and Pat and I think it’s going to be something that they’re going to embrace and yeah, will it look like that? No, but I think it can be very close to having as much success.
How the Chiefs’ offseason plan changed
Veach said after the Chiefs’ loss in the AFC Championship Game, the priorities were an extension for Hill, a new contract for left tackle Orlando Brown and defensive assist.
But then the wide receiver market went crazy. Jacksonville gave Christian Kirk a four-year contract that could be worth $84 millionand the Raiders moved past that after trading for Davante Adams.
Veach realized even by putting the franchise label on Brown wouldn’t allow the Chiefs to address the defense if Hill got a competitive contract. So Veach chatted with CEO/Chairman Clark Hunt and Reid, and realized that trading Hill to Miami for five draft picks in the 2022 and 2023 drafts might not be a bad thing.
In fact, Veach said it would allow the Chiefs to be active in free agency next year.
“It made sense that if you really wanted to add weapons and invest in multiple players and multiple positions, that might be the best case scenario for us,” Veach said of Trading Hill. “Because, like I mentioned, if you do Tyreek, it’s going to be tough to sign some of those veteran defensive linemen, and it’s also going to put you in a bind for years to come. And if you’re doing defensive linemen, you’ll probably have to tell Tyreek there’s nothing we can do this year. It would never have gone that way.
“So after stepping back and talking with Andy and with Clark, it made sense for us to entertain this trade and when we realized we could get multiple choices, a 1, 2, 4, 4 and 6, that this would be a way to hit the draft and the receiver Throw a ton of resources into the defensive side of football and then pump some money back into the short and long term cap as well So that next year we can be a player in free agency. So this path that we’ve decided to take has really opened up what we think are a lot of avenues to improve the roster over the next few years.
Impact of the Hill deal for KC
Veach said signing Hill to a long-term deal would have had a ripple effect that could have been felt by the Chiefs over the next few years.
Also, sending Hill to Miami was a good deal for the player financially and for family reasons.
“So we kind of thought right, if we do this here, we could be out of free will in the next two or three years,” Veach said. “Look, this game, it’s so hard to be good year after year and more than anything you need to have a roster that can handle the physicality of this game and injuries. … So when we thought long and hard about this opportunity and infusing not just the picks but also the cap space over the next few years, it made a lot of sense to us and I think it worked for both parties.
“I know it’s a bit of a cliché and it sounds good, but I really know it. I think Miami has a chance to do things with Tyreek and listen, he lives there and his family is there. down there and it was important for him to be there and it was a place he wanted to be so he deserved it and he certainly helped us reach heights that many thought were impossible over the years.
“I think he deserved that contract. And I was happy for him. And then, like I said, I was just happy that we were able to get some resources to help keep building this thing over the 5, 10 years. And I think we made the right choice, and it’s not going to be easy and we’re going to have a lot of young guys playing football for us this fall. There’s going to be a transition period. But after the draft was over and since they went through rookie minicamp, we were definitely impressed with them and their attitude, so we’re excited to get this thing going.
It was an interesting 20 minute conversation that covered a lot of topics, and you can watch it here.
This story was originally published May 16, 2022 11 a.m.