Q and A: Waiting on Smith, Houston deals

Here is this week's edition of the Kansas City Chiefs mailbag. To ask a question for a future edition, send it to me via Twitter (@adamteicher) and tag it #ChiefsMail.

@adamteicher: Negotiations can be hard to predict but I don't see either one getting done before the start of training camp. At least in the case of Smith, I was warned long ago that those negotiations would be a marathon and not a sprint and that has indeed been the case. A new contract for Houston is more pressing for the Chiefs because of his holdout. It's probably safe to assume the Chiefs won't see Houston for some time unless he signs a contract. Smith is in camp and content to play the last season of his contract. The deadline for a new contract for him wouldn't be until free agency begins in March.

@adamteicher: The Chiefs kept 10 offensive linemen last year and I'm guessing nine or 10 this year. Unless there's an injury, I think they'll keep Eric Fisher, Donald Stephenson, Jeff Linkenbach, Jeff Allen, Rishaw Johnson, Zach Fulton, Rodney Hudson and Eric Kush. They'll keep Laurent Duvernay-Tardif if they don't believe they can get him on the practice squad. They may keep another developmental lineman as well.

@adamteicher: The bar was set low last year. A guy they pulled off waivers at the start of the season, cornerback Marcus Cooper, was their rookie of the year. Among the draft picks, only tackle Eric Fisher and running back Knile Davis played a significant amount. So a big year from Dee Ford would by itself maybe give the Chiefs as much production as they received from their entire rookie class last year. But that's what it might take because other than possibly running back/wide receiver De'Anthony Thomas and Fulton, I don't see the Chiefs getting much from any of their other draft picks this year. Cornerback Phillip Gaines, quarterback Aaron Murray and Duvernay-Tardif look like projects to me.

@adamteicher: Samuel is out there as a free agent and he did once play for Andy Reid with the Eagles. But he's 33 now and isn't the big body the Chiefs prefer at cornerback. That doesn't mean they won't sign him or someone else but they don't appear intent on adding another corner at this point. That can always change.

@adamteicher: They should look at Moore if he comes free. He's young and fast and could be ready to take the next step in his career, particularly if he plays with a more productive quarterback than Oakland has had during his career.

@adamteicher: They're spending plenty of money this year. They saved some against their salary cap when they recently released Brandon Flowers so they now have the flexibility to sign a receiver or corner or another player or extend Houston's contract. But it's ridiculous to spend it for spending's sake. The Chiefs can carry over to next year the unused portion of this year's cap. That's a better idea than to just sign a guy.