Kansas City Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel is an aggressive defensive coordinator by design, and during his days with the New England Patriots, his defense was disciplined—while being in attack mode.
A solid secondary plays a huge factor in the way a front seven can play and how a coach can attack with blitz packages. It safe to say that Crennel has found his man when the Chiefs signed cornerback Stanford Routt Monday to a three-year, $19.6 million deal.
The Chiefs’ move answered some questions. Specifically, Crennel is close in completing his personnel on the defense side of the ball by the signing of Routt, who will play with star cornerback Brandon Flowers.
“Stanford has a proven record of success in the NFL,” said Crennel via press release. “He’s a talented player that has spent seven seasons in the AFC West, so he is familiar with us and our division opponents. We are excited to have Stanford join the team, and we are looking forward to getting started.”
Winning the division is more than half the battle, as each team in the NFL should build towards accomplishing that feat. Moreover, Crennel and all the coaches in the league recognize that.
In addition, adding a premier piece from a club within a division is priceless because the individual understands the magnitude between the rivalry and may be able to offer insight about the other team.
Routt has played his entire seven-year career so far with the Oakland Raiders. He was a second-round selection in the 2005 NFL draft. The Raiders released the 28-years old cornerback in January.
The former track star from the University of Houston registered 201 tackles (171 solo), 10 interceptions, 52 passes defensed, two sacks and a forced fumble (according to press box numbers) as a member of the silver and black in 110 career games (53 starts).
However, Routt experienced impactful seasons when he played alongside former teammate Nnamdi Asomugha, who signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2011.
Last season, as the No. 1 corner for the Raiders, Routt struggled. He had 17 penalties and gave up eight touchdowns, which was tied a league high for a cornerback.
By playing opposite another outstanding cornerback in Brandon Flowers, who signed a five-year, $52-million deal last season, Routt will be much comfortable as the No. 2 to form a more formidable secondary with a healthy Eric Berry at the safety position.
The Routt signing answers a couple of questions. Younger cornerback Brandon Carr will not sign with the Chiefs because it would not make sense for an organization to have three top-notch corners on the roster, knowing another player requires their attention.
Wide receiver Dwayne Bowe will likely be tagged with the franchise stamp, until he and the Chiefs agree on a deal.
Such players as linebacker Tamba Hali and defensive ends Tyson Jackson – hopefully – and Derrick Johnson could do major damage up front because of the solidity of the secondary, which Routt brings.
This is good for what Crennel and the Chiefs’ organization envisions with a young offensive unit.
The Chiefs will have a great, competitive training camp and should be moving towards having an outstanding, competitive 2012 campaign.
“We are excited that we were able to come to terms with Stanford,” said Chiefs’ general manager Scott Pioli. “He is a talented player, and as we have said in the past, we are always looking to add competition at every position year-round. Stanford’s experience and level of play will make him a solid addition to our defense.”