The Kansas City Chiefs released right tackle Eric Winston after only one season Wednesday evening. When the news became public, Winston and recently franchise tagged left tackle Branden Albert then took to Twitter with a very different outlooks.
“Just wanted to confirm that I have been released,” Winston wrote. “Even though it was an incredibly tough year on and off the field last year, I wouldn’t trade the relationships I made in KC and the overall experience I had for anything. It was an honor to be a Chief and I wish them nothing but the best in the future. … On to the next adventure!”
Albert, meanwhile, vented about the possibility of having to switch positions. When asked by one of his followers if he saw himself strictly as a left tackle, he replied, “You damn right.” He then decided to delete his Twitter account.
As expected, Winston, who was out of work for less than a week before landing with Kansas City last year will be a hot commodity when the 2013 NFL Free Agency period begins on March 12 and likely won’t last long on the open market.
Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Daily News reports that Andy Reid’s old team—the Philadelphia Eagles—were one of the first two teams to reach out to the 6-7, 302-pound lineman after Winston announced his departure from the Chiefs.
The other team expressing immediate interest is the Houston Texans—the team that drafted Winston in the third round (No. 66 overall) out of Miami (FL) in the 2006 NFL Draft. Winston was released by the team in a very surprising move this time last year.
He spent his first six seasons in Houston, where he became recognized over time as one of the top offensive tackles in the entire NFL, which prompted the Chiefs to hand him a four-year, $22 million contract last offseason.
Though his short stint in Kansas City wasn’t a success, Winston, 29, remains one of the top players at his position in the NFL and hasn’t missed a single start since his rookie season. The veteran right tackle will provide rock-solid stability and durability to the offensive line of which ever team picks him up—whether that’s the Texans, Eagles or another team that could benefit from his services.
Michael Gartman is a College Football and NFL Senior Writer, the AFC South and NFC West Lead Writer and the Founder, CEO of GridironGrit.com. He’s also about to start reporting on topics across all sides of the political spectrum and analyze important issues in the liberty movement for a political website. Follow him @_MichaelGartman on Twitter. Be sure to ‘like’ Gridiron Grit on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @GridironGrit to keep up with the latest coverage on college football, the NFL and more!