Chiefs WR Juju Smith-Schuster expresses desire to stay in KC

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (9) stiff arms San Francisco 49ers...
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (9) stiff arms San Francisco 49ers cornerback Deommodore Lenoir during the first half of an NFL football game in Santa Clara, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 23, 2022. (AP Photo/Godofredo A. Vásquez)(Godofredo A. Vásquez | AP)
Published: Nov. 10, 2022 at 2:18 PM CST
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - It remains to be determined where Chiefs wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster will play next season. The first-year Chief signed an incentive-laden one-year deal with Kansas City this past off-season.

On Thursday, the 26-year-old wide receiver told reporters he remains interested in figuring out a way to remain with the organization beyond this season.

“I would love to stay here to be honest,” Smith-Schuster said as the Chiefs’ 30.4 points per game ranks first in the NFL. “This offense is unbelievable, the coaching staff is unbelievable. If it was up to me, of course. You know, why not? You get to play with one of the best quarterbacks in the game.”

Through eight games, Smith-Schuster’s chemistry with quarterback Patrick Mahomes has been evident. The former Pittsburgh Steelers wideout has caught 44 passes for 582 yards and scored twice. In Sunday night’s 20-17 win over the Tennessee Titans, he was a security blanket for Mahomes and secured a fourth-and-1 catch in overtime that extended the Chiefs’ game-winning drive.

READ MORE: Chiefs’ Mahomes feels good after high pass volume vs Titans

Smith-Schuster’s one-year deal signed in March was a $3.25 million contract with another $7.5 million available in incentives. Because Smith-Schuster spent much of the 2021 season injured, the incentives are considered NTLBE (not-likely-to-be-earned) incentives, and any that are successfully achieved will apply to the Chiefs’ 2023 salary cap.

During the win over the Titans, the USC product had 10 catches for 88 yards. By surpassing 40 catches for the season, he triggered a $500,000 incentive and by going past 500 yards he received another $500,000 incentive. According to Spotrac, Smith-Schuster could still earn these incentives:

  • 50 receptions: $1 million
  • 65 receptions: $1.5 million
  • 650 yards: $1 million
  • 900 yards: $1.5 million

Both the receptions and yards bonuses are non-cumulative.

  • 45 percent playing time: $500,000
  • 65 percent playing time: $1.5 million
  • Making the Pro Bowl: $1 million
  • AFC Championship win + 50 percent snaps: $500,000
  • Super Bowl win + 50 percent snaps: $500,000

Smith-Schuster, fourth-year wide receiver Mecole Hardman and Justin Watson are all unrestricted free agents following this season. Ahead of the bye week, Kansas City traded for former first-round pick Kadarius Toney, who remains under contract through 2026. In the off-season, they drafted Skyy Moore and signed Marquez Valdes-Scantling to a three-year deal.