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'I Left Some on the Table' — How Patrick Mahomes Paved the Way for the Chris Jones Contract

After the Kansas City Chiefs and defensive tackle Chris Jones agreed to a four year, $85 million contract on July 14, Jones spoke to the media for the first time Monday.

To many, defensive tackle Chris Jones' chances of getting a new long-term contract with the Kansas City Chiefs before the July 15 franchise tag deadline seemed slim after the Chiefs extended quarterback Patrick Mahomes in a historic $500 million deal

But, for Jones, the future was never in doubt.

On July 14, one day before the deadline, the Chiefs and Jones agreed to a four-year contract worth $85 million. Jones spoke with media in a video conference Monday about how Mahomes' massive contract affected his new deal. Jones said that Mahomes texted him after his contract and said he "left some on the table," meaning that Mahomes left some money to be spent on keeping Jones in KC.

“Me, personally, I kind of had a feeling that a deal was going to get done," Jones said. "When Pat’s deal got done, Pat texted me and said ‘Let’s get this thing done, I left some [money] on the table, let's get this thing done,’ and that's when I had the security that me and the Chiefs were going to work something out." 

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After the franchise tag was placed on Jones in February, reports were that Jones' camp and the team did not engage in contract talks for a while. NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported there was "still a lot to be done."

Jones at one point even tweeted he wouldn't play if a deal didn't get done, citing New York Jets running back LeVon Bell's contract situation with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

But after Mahomes deal was done, the mood seemed to shift. 

“Pat’s deal was important," Jones said. "I kind of understood whatever happens happens. For me, I always wanted to be with the Kansas City Chiefs. It’s not about being the highest-paid player it's about getting what you deserve. But, most important, it's about being patient with the organization."

With the contract, Jones joins Mahomes, defensive end Frank Clark and kicker Harrison Butker as the only players under contract for 2023.