The Green Bay Packers could be closing in on pass rushing specialist Dee Ford, with rumors indicating that they are trying to work out a deal with the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Chiefs had already placed the franchise tag on Ford, but The Sporting News reported that they are open to trading him if the price is right. The Packers are reportedly trying to land a deal for the talented, but now ill-fitting linebacker, though it’s not clear how serious the discussions are going.
As the report noted, Ford could be an odd man out in the new defensive scheme for the Chiefs. After the team fired defensive coordinator Bob Sutton and hired Steve Spagnuolo as a replacement, they are likely switching to a 4-3, Spagnuolo’s specialty. Ford is a better fit as an outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense, however, which has left him as potential trade bait for the team.
The Packers, who run a 4-3, would seem to be a logical fit for Ford, the report noted — but only if the price was right for the Chiefs.
“The team is willing to hold on to Ford and play him at that position if they can’t find a deal for him they like so they clearly believe he can do it. Just on the surface, the fit in Green Bay’s defense would appear to be ideal,” the report noted.
The price tag for Ford could soon be ticking higher, as Niners Wire reported that the San Francisco 49ers are also interested. Ford would be a much-needed boost to a San Francisco defense that registered only 37 sacks last season, tied for 22nd in the league. Ford himself had 14 sacks last year to go along with 13 tackles for a loss, seven forced fumbles, 29 quarterback hits, and 55 total tackles — which Niners Wire noted were all career highs for the 27-year-old. Ford also had the top pass-rush grade from PFF and had the most total quarterback pressures among edge rushers last season.
— NFLTradeRumors.co (@nfltrade_rumors) March 5, 2019
It was not clear what the Green Bay Packers could be offering to the Kansas City Chiefs, or just how serious the two sides were in trade talks for Dee Ford. Niners Wire also noted that it wasn’t clear just how serious the 49ers were in looking at Ford, or if they were simply putting in their due diligence. Trading for a franchise-tagged player comes with its own set of difficulties that could complicate things even further, the report added.