The Kansas City Chiefs are beginning to tinker with their cap space, as the team announced Tuesday that it had released linebacker Anthony Hitchens. The move frees up about $8.4 million in cap space, per Over The Cap's Jason Fitzgerald.
Hitchens spent the past four seasons with the Chiefs and recorded 80 combined tackles, two passes defensed and an interception in 15 games played this past season. The Iowa product was selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft, but found his way to Kansas City in free agency ahead of the 2018 season. In his first year with the Chiefs, Hitchens recorded a career-high 135 combined tackles.
"When I first became General Manager, one of the first moves I wanted to make was to bring in Anthony Hitchens from Dallas," Chiefs general manager Brett Veach said. "We knew how intelligent, hard working and consistent he was as a player, and we knew he'd become a selfless leader. He was that and more. He has all the intangibles and was an integral piece in our franchise winning a Super Bowl title. We appreciate everything he's done for the organization and wish him the best as he continues his career."
Hitchens was under contract for one more season, and had a cap hit of $12.66 million in 2022, per Spotrac. His release brings a dead cap hit of $4.2 million. The additions of linebackers Willie Gay Jr. and Nick Bolton made this salary cut an expected one. Per Over The Cap, the Chiefs now have about $11.19 million in available cap space, which ranks No. 18 in the NFL. This likely won't be the only cut the Chiefs decide to make in the near future, as they have several notable free agents to attempt to re-sign such as star safety Tyrann Mathieu, cornerback Charvarius Ward and left tackle Orlando Brown Jr.