KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Chiefs agreed to terms with wide receiver Dwayne Bowe on a five-year contract Monday and effectively kept their other top potential free agent, left tackle Branden Albert, off the market by declaring him a franchise player.
The Chiefs also agreed to contract terms with punter Dustin Colquitt, another potential free agent.
By designating Albert as a franchise player, the Chiefs have offered him a one-year contract worth $9.83 million.
"We felt it was in the best interest of the Kansas City Chiefs to place the tag on Branden," Chiefs general manager John Dorsey said in a statement announcing the move. "We will continue to negotiate with Branden and his agent to reach a deal that is mutually beneficial. We are looking forward to working with Branden in the near future."
Albert told The Kansas City Star that while his agent and the Chiefs had talked about a long-term contract, they were nowhere close to an agreement.
"I'm happy for Dustin and Bowe and I'm happy for the organization. That's all I've got to say about it. Bowe deserves it. Colquitt deserves it. The organization locked up three players that are going to help them win."
Bowe, who the Chiefs made a franchise player last season after both sides couldn't agree on a long-term contract, has been the Chiefs' leading receiver for the past four seasons following Tony Gonzalez's trade to Atlanta.
"When we first arrived, one of the first items on our agenda was signing Dwayne," Dorsey said in a statement confirming the new contract, of which terms were not disclosed. "He's been a key player on our offense and is one of the premier players at his position. We are pleased that Dwayne will be a member of this team for years to come."
Bowe posted a message on his Facebook and Twitter accounts that read: "On vacation till I got the call that changed my life. I wanna thank the Hunt Family & the Chiefs organization."
"I'm very blessed to be a member of the Kansas City Chiefs," Bowe added in a statement released by the Chiefs. "The Hunt family and the fan base have been very supportive over the years, and I am looking forward to working with John and Coach Reid in the near future. I'm excited to continue my career with the Chiefs and hopefully help this team reach our goals."
Colquitt had one of the best seasons of his NFL career last season, when he was chosen to the AFC's Pro Bowl team. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Colquitt's contract is for five years and $18.75 million, making him the highest-paid punter in the NFL.
The Chiefs did not disclose the terms of Colquitt's contract but did release a statement confirming the agreement.
"John and I knew right away that we'd like to keep Dustin in a Chiefs uniform," Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. "He's worked hard at his craft and has become one of the best punters in the NFL. He's got a strong leg and the ability to pin opponents deep in their own territory. We are happy we were able to come to an agreement."
Albert was able to start only one of the last six games of the season because of back spasms. The Chiefs were evidently confident enough in his ability to withstand the punishment of another season.
Retaining Albert for just one year wouldn't seem to preclude the Chiefs from taking a left tackle, either Luke Joeckel of Texas A&M or Eric Fisher of Central Michigan, with the first pick in the draft. Albert said he has had no discussions about the possibility of changing positions with Reid or offensive line coach Andy Heck but indicated the point was moot.
"I'll be playing left tackle," Albert said.
Monday was a busy day for the Chiefs, but their to-do list didn't end with signing wide receiver Dwayne Bowe and punter Dustin Colquitt long-term and placing the franchise tag on left tackle Branden Albert.
FREE AGENCY: The league's free-agent free-for-all commences one week from Tuesday. The Chiefs can ill afford to waste any time figuring out which players to retain, or add.
PRIME CUTS: Some daunting salaries remain on the books. Defensive end Tyson Jackson (due $17.47 million in 2013) and quarterback Matt Cassel ($9.825 million) could be on the outs in KC.
PRO DAYS: The Chiefs still hold the top overall draft pick come April 25. Their homework this month includes visits to a number of college prospects' pro days.
DRAFT BOARD: Sure, they've signed a QB (Alex Smith) and found ways to retain Bowe, Colquitt and Albert, but the last thing the Chiefs want to do now is tip their hand as to whom they'll select No. 1. Trade down, or take an O-lineman such as Luke Joeckel, or forego offense and nab a defensive player … the Chiefs need to give the impression that anything is possible next month at Radio City Music Hall.
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