The Chiefs ongoing efforts to improve their cornerback position continued on Friday, as they signed five-year veteran David Amerson, the club announced.
Amerson signed a one-year deal with a $2.25 million base salary and escalating incentives, a source told The Star. The deal could be worth up to $6 million, according to NFL Network.
Amerson, 26, is a five-year pro who spent the last three seasons with the Oakland Raiders. The 6-foot-1, 205-pounder only played in six games last season, recording 18 tackles and a pass deflection before landing on injured reserve with a foot injury, but he was better the previous two seasons, when he averaged 61 tackles, 21 pass deflections and three interceptions.
The Raiders released Amerson earlier this month before his $5.5 million salary for 2018 would be fully guaranteed. Amerson had also drawn interest from the San Francisco 49ers, according to The Sacramento Bee.
A former second-round pick of Washington in 2013, Amerson spent his first three seasons there before he was waived and claimed by Oakland. As a senior at North Carolina State in 2011, he won the Jack Tatum Award — which is given to the nation’s best defensive back — after tying the NCAA record for single-season interceptions with 13.
Amerson is the latest addition to a cornerback group that struggled to find its footing in 2017, aside from third-year star Marcus Peters. In January, the Chiefs reached an agreement with Washington to acquire one of the game’s best young slot corners, Kendall Fuller, by trading away quarterback Alex Smith.
The Chiefs are also slated to receive a third-round pick in the Smith deal, which can’t be consummated until March 14. With cornerback being a need position, the acquisition of Fuller and now Amerson could potentially protect them from reaching on a corner with a top 100 pick in the draft if one of their desired targets does not fall.
Amerson joins a cornerback group that, prior to Fuller’s arrival, officially includes Peters, Steven Nelson, Will Redmond, Keith Reaser and Ashton Lampkin. Kenneth Acker, Phillip Gaines and Terrence Mitchell are slated to be free agents when the new league year begins in mid-March.