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Branden Albert targeted by K.C. Chiefs for new deal

  • By Kevin Patra
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When the Kansas City Chiefs cut right tackle Eric Winston on Wednesday, almost everyone assumed it signaled a plan to draft a left tackle with the No. 1 overall selection in April's NFL Draft -- even Branden Albert.

Albert, the incumbent left tackle, tweeted Wednesday he had zero interest in playing anywhere else on the line (he has since deactivated his Twitter account). It turns out he might have jumped the gun with his assumption.

Harrison: Team needs in free agency
With free agency set to kick off at 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, March 12, Elliot Harrison identifies priorities for all 32 NFL teams. More ...'s Ian Rapoport reported Thursday that the Chiefs are continuing to work out a long-term deal with the franchise-tagged Albert on the assumption he will be their left tackle of the future. The Chiefs still are interested in drafting a tackle to fill the right side of the line.

Andy Reid values right and left tackle similarly, so the line of thinking follows that the Chiefs could draft either Luke Joeckel or Eric Fisher -- the two highest-rated offensive tackles, according to NFl Network draft expert Mike Mayock -- and slide either of them in at right tackle. With the rookie wage scale, the Chiefs could be replacing Winston with a younger, less-expensive player.

Scouts will get another look at Joeckel at Texas A&M's pro day today, and the Chiefs might be deciphering whether he can play both sides of the offensive line.

Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.


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