The Kansas City Chiefs are facing a notable absence at their mandatory minicamp as star defensive tackle Chris Jones has chosen to stay away from the team, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
The decision comes as Jones and the Chiefs have been engaged in contract extension negotiations to properly value the 28-year-old player.
Despite his remarkable performance during the previous season, which included 15.5 sacks and a third-place finish in the Defensive Player of the Year voting, Jones and the team have yet to reach an agreement.
Chiefs General Manager Brett Veach had previously expressed his intention to secure a new contract for Jones, acknowledging its priority. However, the negotiations apparently did not progress quickly enough to satisfy Jones, leading to his absence from the minicamp.
Entering the final year of his current four-year, $80 million contract, Jones is set to receive a base salary of $19.5 million for the upcoming season. Both the player and the team have expressed a desire for a new deal that provides Jones with additional compensation this year while simultaneously reducing his cap hit of $28.3 million.
The Chiefs hold the authority to impose fines of nearly $100,000 on Jones for missing all three days of the mandatory minicamp. Nevertheless, it is widely believed that the team and Jones will ultimately come to an agreement that makes the potential fines seem insignificant in comparison.
During the previous season, Jones started in all 17 games and set a new career high in sacks. His outstanding performance earned him a spot on the first-team All-Pro. Additionally, Jones played a pivotal role in helping the Chiefs secure victory in the Super Bowl.
The absence of Chris Jones at the Chiefs’ mandatory minicamp raises questions about the progress of contract extension negotiations between the player and the team.
While the Chiefs have established themselves as Super Bowl contenders in recent years, reaching an agreement with Jones will be crucial in maintaining the team’s defensive prowess moving forward.