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Marcus Peters disagrees with Chiefs’ Alex Smith trade: He ‘don’t get enough respect’
A month ago, cornerback Marcus Peters and quarterback Alex Smith were teammates on the Kansas City Chiefs. Now, after two blockbuster trades in the past month, neither Peters nor Smith reside in Kansas City. Smith is the Redskins’ new quarterback while Peters is the Rams’ new top cornerback.
On Monday, Peters appeared on NFL Network’s “NFL Total Access.” There, he was asked about the Chiefs’ trade of Smith. This shouldn’t come as a huge surprise given Peters was just traded by the Chiefs (he’s not exactly a neutral third party), but he doesn’t agree with their decision to trade away Smith.
“No,” he said, via NFL.com. “Man, Alex, Alex don’t get enough respect. And they need to start putting some respect on that man’s name. Because I’ve seen that man get thrown under the bus too many times and he took it as a man. And he never complained about it. He don’t turn over the ball. And he know how to win.”
Peters has a point, though. Smith has often been mocked by many (including me) because of his conservative playing style, which can lead to a frustrating viewing experience. Heck, Football Outsiders even named an advanced statistic after him (Air Less EXpected), which “measures the average difference between how far a quarterback threw a pass (air yards) and how many yards he needed for a first down.”
But to Peters’ point, Smith has won pretty consistently since he arrived in Kansas City. From 2013-17, Smith posted a 50-26 record as a starter, completed 65.1 percent of his passes, threw 102 touchdowns and 33 interceptions, and accumulated a 94.8 passer rating. Tons of teams would kill for numbers like that out of their own quarterback. Impressively, Smith posted the league’s highest passer rating (131.4) on throws that traveled 20 yards downfield in 2017, according to Pro Football Focus.
Unfortunately, Smith hasn’t been able to lead the Chiefs to much postseason success, going 1-4 as the starter in the playoffs. In his final playoff start with the team, the Chiefs blew a 18-point halftime lead to the Titans. Just before the Super Bowl, Kansas City — which drafted Patrick Mahomes in the first round of the 2017 Draft — sent Smith to Washington. Now, he will be tasked with leading the Redskins to playoff success, which eluded Kirk Cousins during his time in Washington.
“That was our fault for messing up the playoffs,” Peters said. “That was our fault.”
As for Peters, he’s one of the best cornerbacks in football, having notched a league-high 19 interceptions since entering the league in 2015. Even still, with off-the-field concerns clearly factoring in, the Chiefs shopped him around after the season and eventually sent him to the Rams for a pretty underwhelming haul. Peters shouldn’t be too upset, as he’s going from one playoff team to another. Neither should Smith, who knew ever since the selection of Mahomes that he didn’t factor into the Chiefs’ long-term plans. He avoided a destination like Cleveland and got a new contract from Washington. And the Chiefs are probably happy to move on from Peters and get a solid return for Smith (a third-round pick and cornerback Kendall Fuller) when they have the future of their franchise already on their roster.
Technically, Peters and Smith are still members of the Chiefs because the trades can’t be finalized until mid March, but they’re both as good as gone. Meanwhile, the Chiefs are set to enter the 2018 season with a new quarterback and without their top playmaker on defense. Most importantly, the Chiefs helped get us through the dead portion of the NFL calendar in February by making two huge trades. We all owe them for that.
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Dorsey weighs difference between Alex Smith and AJ McCarron
This isn’t Alex Smith II for John Dorsey, but AJ McCarron passes at least one of the new GM’s tests of what the Browns are looking for in their quarterback stable.
Browns fans groaned in harmony over the AJ McCarron trade, for reasons an octave apart.
Some wailed over the incompetence of submitting paperwork too late, a flub that turned it into no trade at all.
Some hated the fact anyone wanted McCarron in the first place. The franchise has waited nearly 20 years for a quarterback, and this is what they come up with?
With free agency opening next week and a powerful new general manager in place, there really is only one question behind the new noise surrounding McCarron.
Does John Dorsey think McCarron can play?
Dorsey’s other big question has been answered. Can the incoming QB mesh with the head coach?
Flash back to 2013, when Dorsey was the new GM of a Chiefs team coming off a 2-14 year (with Brady Quinn as its most frequent QB). Dorsey says his first thought was, “We need to get a quarterback.”
Alex Smith was available. In Dorsey’s mind, the former No. 1 overall draft pick got past the question, “Can he play?” Next question: Would Smith rhyme with Andy Reid?
“Having the mindset of the head coach is important,” Dorsey said. “Alex’s mannerisms and mindset were the same as Andy’s. That was really interesting.”
In 2014, the Bengals drafted McCarron with the blessing of Hue Jackson, who had just been promoted to offensive coordinator. Jackson and McCarron were in their second year together when Andy Dalton got hurt. McCarron went 2-2 as the replacement. The second loss would have been a playoff win over Pittsburgh if not for bonehead actions by teammates.
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Flash forward to last Oct. 31. Jackson was so eager to get McCarron he deemed him worth a high second-round draft pick. The trade almost got finished.
It wasn’t Dorsey’s idea. The Browns didn’t hire him until a month later. Now, whether to chase McCarron is Dorsey’s call. And this is NOT Alex Smith II.
While it is true the 2013 Chiefs needed a quarterback and owned the No. 1 overall draft pick, the draft crop was scraggly. EJ Manuel became the first QB selected, at No. 16 overall, followed by Geno Smith at No. 39.
Dorsey and Reid needed Smith. He was 28 years old and had been a No. 1 overall pick. After looking like a bust through a few years, he was doing intriguing things. The 49ers had moved on to Colin Kaepernick, glad to get what they could for Smith in a trade.
At the time of the deal, Smith’s record as a 49ers starter was 38-36-1. That’s a bit different than McCarron’s 2-2 through four seasons in Cincinnati.
Also different is this year’s QB draft crop, perceived to be at least decent and perhaps quite good.
As in Kansas City, Dorsey has been staked to the No. 1 pick, but he also gets No. 4 overall. He might like to have McCarron as an option, but McCarron certainly lacks the leverage Smith wielded five years ago.
Smith was a No. 1 pick who finally semi-blossomed. McCarron was the ninth quarterback drafted in 2014.
Jackson has seen enough to make an educated projection, and McCarron’s profile has changed since he was drafted, Still, it is worth noting that Dorsey’s 2014 Chiefs drafted a QB at No. 163 overall, and it was Aaron Murray, not McCarron, who went to Cincinnati at No. 164.
McCarron is about the age Smith was when he joined Dorsey in KC, but he would arrive with almost no pro game experience. His entire workload in 2017 was 14 passes against the Bears and Vikings. He didn’t attempt a pass in 2016. His last serious action was the crazy playoff loss to Pittsburgh (23-of-41, 212 yards, a TD, an interception).
One most go back for any meaty profile.
During the 2014 predraft, NFL.com analyst Nolan Nawrocki called him “an efficient game manager who showed at times he can carry an offense, but was more dependent on a terrific supporting in cast at Alabama. His best grades are for intangibles and decision-making. He could earn an NFL starting job.”
Analyst Mike Mayock suspected McCarron dropped in the draft partly because he skipped the 2014 Senior Bowl.
“He lost an opportunity,” Mayock said at the time. ”(Jimmy) Garoppolo stepped in and impressed people.
“AJ is better than the ‘average Alabama quarterback,’ though. I think he’ll be a second- or third-round pick.”
At time time, Alabama coach Nick Saban dismissed the Senior Bowl factor.
“He’s going to be a very successful NFL quarterback,” Saban said. “Everybody talks about five really good quarterbacks in this draft. They may not all get drafted in the first round.”
During one point of his Alabama career, McCarron was on a 36-2 hot streak.
Yet, on draft day, the first five QBs to go were Blake Bortles, Johnny Manziel, Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr and Garoppolo. The next three were Logan Thomas, Tom Savage and Murray. Then, McCarron.
McCarron’s profile raises fair doubts about whether he can be an improvement on the many quarterbacks who have done nothing to turn the Browns around.
Jackson seems to sense something. If Dorsey gets on board, there is a good chance McCarron will be the man in Cleveland, until the draft pick is deemed ready, at least.