Here’s why the Kadarius Toney trade makes a ton of sense for the Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs have made a move ahead of the NFL’s trade deadline, acquiring New York Giants WR Kadarius Toney in exchange for two 2023 draft picks.

There will be a lot of skepticism surrounding this trade in the Chiefs Kingdom. Some of it will be because of Toney’s history in his two years in the NFL. He’s struggled to see the field with the Giants, especially this season as he’s dealt with multiple hamstring injuries, though there is some sense that he simply didn’t mesh with the new regime in New York. Some of the concerns will be because fans don’t believe that the receiver position is one of need.

This move, however, is the classic reclamation project that Brett Veach and Andy Reid seem to enjoy. They’re buying low on a player with first-round talent that hasn’t yet reached his potential. That’s just one of the reasons this trade is appealing, though.

In the long term, the Chiefs have acquired a 23-year-old receiver with 3.5 years of contract control. He has the rest of this year, 2023 and 2024, earning $5.2 million fully guaranteed over that span. Then there’s the fifth-year option that Kansas City can choose to use if things go well. They currently have three players set to hit free agency in 2022: JuJu Smith-Schuster, Mecole Hardman and Justin Watson. With the receiver market soaring in the 2022 NFL offseason, Kansas City now has another cost-controlled option on the roster that they can develop for the future.

In the short term, Toney can potentially be a solution to two problems. First is the team’s ability to beat man coverage. Prior to Week 7, the Chiefs’ receivers were struggling to create separation against man coverage on a consistent basis. Toney boasts 4.39 speed and is a weapon that the team can use to help diffuse the man coverage looks they’ve been getting. The second thing is his ability to contribute to special teams. In college, Toney was both a kick returner and punt returner. Kansas City needs to find a solution at punt returner with Skyy Moore working in that role and struggling to field punts. Toney had 13 career punt returns at Florida for 147 yards and one touchdown.

While the rewards of this trade mostly won’t be felt until later on down the line, this move could prove to be a promising one for Kansas City.

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Story originally appeared on Chiefs Wire