The Chiefs saved about $3 million by parting with Mays, who started last season on injured reserve and wound up making just 16 tackles in eight games. Mays was expected to start alongside Derrick Johnson, but never seemed to solidify his role.
The Chiefs have made modest savings by releasing Mays along with wide receivers Donnie Avery and A.J. Jenkins and tight end Anthony Fasano. Now, the big question is whether they will carve out more significant salary cap space by trading, releasing or restructuring the massive contracts of wide receiver Dwayne Bowe and linebacker Tamba Hali in the coming days.