Kansas City Star sports writer Terez Paylor tweeted at 11am that a fan favorite, Sean McGrath, had decided to retire. Coach Andy Reid said, “McGrath is going to retire, that’s we’ve been told by him. I wish him the best. He’s a good kid. It’s a personal decision he made.”
The 26 year old tight end had played a solid back up role in the Chiefs 11-5 season last year. McGrath made plays in 9 of the 16 games. He finished with a total of 26 receptions equalling 302 yards and 2 touchdowns. His first touchdown came when the Chiefs humiliated the New York Giants at home. That was the day I started calling him “The Beard”. That nickname seemed fitting for the 6’5″, 247 pound man bulldozing over people to make a play. It obviously wasn’t the most original nickname because even sport commentators began calling him “The Bearded One”.
McGrath was picked up last year off waivers to play back up to Anthony Fasano and Travis Kelce. He ended up with a chance to play in more games because Kelce was placed on injured reserve with a season ending knee injury and Fasano battled injuries throughout the season. The team weighed heavily on McGrath in the tight end position. It’s a sad day to see him go into retirement so soon.
However, there is no rest for the weary in football. The Chiefs signed former Emporia State tight end Adam Schiltz off waivers from Tennessee Titans. Schiltz stands at 6’4″ and weighs in at 245 pounds. He should be a comparable replacement for McGrath. Schiltz was originally signed by the Texans last year as a free agent but was released before the season began. He then landed on Tennessee’s practice squad where he sat until today. In his senior year as a Hornet he had 44 receptions for 560 yards and four touchdowns.
Signing Schiltz brings this Chiefs back up to five tight ends. Fasano, Kelce, Demetrius Harris, and Richard Gordon will be playing along side Schiltz in Kansas City. We will be able to see what kind of damage this group of tight ends will do in August 7 against Cincinnati.
With heavy hearts the fans say goodbye and good luck to McGrath. With excitement for the new season fans say welcome to the Kingdom, Schiltz.