LB Ford says he hopes to re-sign with Chiefs

With a potential free agent payday looming, Kansas City outside linebacker Dee Ford said Thursday he would prefer to stay “home” and re-sign with the Chiefs.”That’s THE option,” Ford told following practice Thursday at the Pro Bowl in Orlando. “That’s home to me. I love the community and I’m just used to that environment, so I’ll be blessed to be able to stay. We’ll cross that bridge once we get there.”Ford earned a base salary of $8.7 million in the fifth-year option of his rookie contract in 2018, when he set career highs with 13 sacks and 29 QB hits, shared the NFL lead with seven forced fumbles and received his first Pro Bowl invitation.The pass rusher, who turns 28 in March, stands to earn much more this offseason. If he can’t strike a new deal with Kansas City before free agency opens in March, Ford said he wouldn’t be upset if the Chiefs applied the franchise tag to him for 2019, which would carry a one-year salary in excess of $16 million.”That’s out of my control,” Ford said. “If it happens, it happens, and I don’t mind it.”Should he return next season, Ford would be playing for a new defensive coordinator for the first time since he entered the league as the Chiefs’ 2014 first-round pick out of Auburn.