(Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)
Eric Berry was released after 9 seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs on March 13th, 2019. This move saves around $9.5 million for the Chiefs and around $3 million in dead cap money. It also adds another elite safety to a Historically great safety free agency class. Eric will have no trouble getting a deal done in the coming weeks.
Image Credits: Cbssports.com
What does this mean for the Chiefs?
The Chiefs drafted Berry in 2010 with the 5th overall pick and he immediately made an impact with a pro bowl rookie season(when they actually meant something). 4 years later after a Thursday night football game in Oakland, Berry felt a pain in his chest. The results came back as lymphoma. This was extremely crushing for not only the team and fans, but for everyone around the NFL. No one cares about football anymore, everyone just wanted to make sure Berry was okay. All during his recovery he still worked out and eventually made his way back to the Chiefs by training camp. He came back even better with another all-pro season and AP Comeback Player of the Year Award. After yet another all-pro season in 2016, the Chiefs gave him a 6 year deal to make sure they had the best safety in the league on their team until the end of his career. Then came opening night against the Patriots. The Chiefs won, but this game is more known now as the start of the end for Eric Berry’s time in KC. He tore his Achilles late in the game and was out for the rest of the season.
You beat an ACL tear.
You beat a ruptured Achilles.
You beat cancer.
You're an incredible example of perseverance, strength, and dedication.
— Mαtt Duench (@mduench) March 13, 2019
Fast forward to the preseason, and we all start hearing about Berry having problems with his heel again. This would later come out as a heel deformity. Berry wouldn’t make his return to the Chiefs until a week 15 matchup against the Chargers. Chiefs fans thought he was the answer for the 31st ranked defense, but the very next week he tweaked his heel again against the Seahawks and was out till the championship game. He looked relatively back to normal in those 3 games, but the Chiefs decided to move on from the veteran safety. Many disagree with this move, including myself, but the Chiefs will have to move on to find a younger safety probably in this year’s draft. Eric Berry will always be a hero in Kansas City, it’s just too bad the Kansas City Chiefs couldn’t give him another chance.
Image Credits: Kshb.com
What does this mean for other NFL teams?
It depends if you believe he will come back at 100%. Personally, I do, because if you can come back from cancer you can come back from anything the way I see it. If he does, it will be an all-pro safety available for any team to pick him up. Berry is only 29, so team would probably look to give him around a 3-year deal.