What should Chiefs do with Kadarius Toney after disastrous performance vs. Lions?

Kadarius Toney’s abysmal performance against the Detroit Lions was the most critical factor in the Kansas City Chiefs’ Week 1 loss on Thursday night. He ended the game with one catch for one yard on five targets.

Usually, a stat line like that would be an indication of poor play from a receiver’s quarterback, but in this case, Toney let Patrick Mahomes and his entire team down by dropping all four of his uncaught targets.

It was hard to watch.

The drops wouldn’t have been such a big deal if they hadn’t come in such crucial situations. One happened early in the third quarter when Mahomes hit Toney with a perfect pass that went cleanly through his hands before being snagged by Lions safety Brian Branch for a pick-six.

On Kansas City’s final drive, Mahomes targeted the beleaguered receiver yet again and got the ball right in Toney’s breadbasket where it slipped right through his arms.

It was otherworldly. Toney is a professional football player, a wide receiver no less, and seemed wholly incapable of making even the most routine catches.

The loss is now, thankfully, behind the Chiefs and the team will begin preparing in earnest for the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 2 after they lick their wounds over the weekend.

But the question has to be asked; What should Kansas City do with Kadarius Toney?

Option 1: Leave him in, trust Toney to work through it

Michael Chow/The Republic via USA TODAY Sports
Michael Chow/The Republic via USA TODAY Sports

Toney missed the better part of training camp and all of the preseason due to injury, so some rust was to be expected. But a performance like the one he turned in on Thursday is absolutely inexcusable for a player many thought would be a key cog in the Chiefs’ offensive machine.

Does one (horrifically, dreadfully, heinously, appallingly, etc.) bad game make Toney a lost cause? Absolutely not.

But Kansas City hosts several young receivers who may need to get more looks in the coming weeks if Toney doesn’t improve drastically next week.

Option 2: Bench Toney

(Photo by Jason Hanna/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jason Hanna/Getty Images)

After absolutely blowing it in Week 1, it would make sense for the Chiefs to bench Toney in their next game, especially since it will be a must-win affair against the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are a conference opponent.

Kansas City simply cannot afford to have Toney be a liability on the field next week, and there is no lack of talent behind him on the depth chart. Does he need to be “punished” for his bad game against Detroit? Probably not.

But that doesn’t mean that the Chiefs shouldn’t weigh their options and give guys like Justyn Ross, Rashee Rice, and Justin Watson a chance to prove that they can produce in Toney’s role.

Option 3: Trade Toney to any team that will offer a draft pick

Jessica Alcheh-USA TODAY Sports
Jessica Alcheh-USA TODAY Sports

Toney was traded to Kansas City last season, and nothing says they can’t try to flip him again for whatever they can get in return from another team. This is the least likely scenario because, after his showing against the Lions and his antics on social media in the offseason, Toney’s trade value is unlikely to gain the Chiefs anything more than a roster spot, cap space, and a late-round conditional draft pick.

Option 4: Cut Toney

(Photo by Jason Hanna/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jason Hanna/Getty Images)

If there is more that went into Toney’s abysmal Thursday night performance than fans know about, the Chiefs may be wise to just outright part ways with him. It isn’t possible to know what is going on behind the scenes that caused him to play so horrendously poorly against the Lions, but if something is up, Kansas City could decide that the juice isn’t worth the squeeze with their third-year receiver.

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Story originally appeared on Chiefs Wire