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|Pasquarelli: Too low to go?|
Either the Kansas City Chiefs are shrewd negotiators or the New York Jets were simply willing to allow coach Herman Edwards out of the final two years of his contract for just about any level of compensation.
Or maybe both.
The fourth-round selection in the 2006 draft that the Chiefs will send to the Jets in the deal that allows Edwards to move to Kansas City as successor to Dick Vermeil represents the lowest compensation ever bargained for a coach under the current guidelines. Around the NFL on Friday, officials from other teams were stunned at the compensation deal. No one expected the Jets to be able to squeeze a first-round choice out of Chiefs president and general manager Carl Peterson, but they felt New York would get more than it did.
Here's a look at the five head coaches in recent years who required compensation to change teams:
• In arguably the all-time whopper of compensation packages, the Tampa Bay Bucs in 2002 sent the Oakland Raiders two first-, two second-, and two third-round choices, along with $8 million for coach Jon Gruden.
• The New York Jets surrendered picks in the first round rounds, although spread out over three different drafts (1997-99), to pry Bill Parcells away from New England in 1997.
• It essentially cost the Patriots a first-round choice (there was some switching of lower-round draft picks as well) to get Bill Belichick out of his deal with the Jets in 2000.
• Kansas City surrendered second- and third-round choices to St. Louis in 2001 for the right to hire Vermeil.
• Although he had been out of football for two years, after resigning from the Chiefs, it still cost Washington a pair of third-round picks as compensation to Kansas City to hire Marty Schottenheimer in 2001.
One might argue that Edwards does not possess the career coaching resume of any of the five men who elicited compensation. But in five seasons with the Jets, he did compile a 41-46 record, one certainly skewed by a 4-12 mark in 2005. Edwards led the Jets to the playoffs three times, however, and a division title in 2002.
Clearly, though, by Thursday, team officials had decided Edwards could not return to the Jets for 2006 and worked to complete a deal with the Chiefs, even if that deal appears to be below market value. Notable, too, is that Edwards is the fourth straight coach to leave the Jets without being fired.
Parcells retired after the 1999 season and his successor, Belichick, resigned after just two days on the job. Al Groh left the team after just one season, in 2000, to become the coach at the University of Virginia, and now Edwards is gone.
-- Len Pasquarelli
Len Pasquarelli is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.