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Chiefs score big with compensatory picks
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PHOENIX (AP) — NFC champion Seattle, Denver and Kansas City each were awarded four compensatory picks in this year’s draft.
The NFL handed out 32 such picks to 14 teams on Monday. They begin at the conclusion of the third round when Super Bowl winner New England gets the 97th overall choice.
New England lost LeGarrette Blount, Dane Fletcher, Brandon Spikes and Aqib Talib in 2014 free agency, while adding Brandon Browner and Brandon LaFell. Blount returned to the Patriots after being cut by Pittsburgh in November and was a key running back the rest of the season.
The Patriots get two picks overall.
A team losing more or better compensatory free agents than it acquires in the previous year is eligible to receive compensatory picks. The draft will be held April 30-May 2 in Chicago.
Kansas City and Cincinnati also received third-rounders, Nos. 98 and 99, respectively.
The Chiefs lost Branden Albert, Jon Asamoah, Quintin Demps, Tyson Jackson, Akeem Jordan, Kendrick Lewis, Dexter McCluster and Geoff Schwartz. They added Joe Mays and Vance Walker.
Cincinnati, like New England, got one of its departed free agents back. The Bengals lost DE Michael Johnson to Tampa Bay, and also saw OT Anthony Collins leave. Johnson was released this month by Tampa Bay and re-signed by the Bengals. They get two picks overall.
Other teams receiving choices were Baltimore and Houston (three each); Carolina, Green Bay and San Francisco (two); Arizona, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh and St. Louis (one).
Compensatory free agents are determined by a formula based on salary, playing time and postseason honors. The formula was developed by the NFL’s management council.
Since compensatory picks first were awarded in 1994, the Ravens have gotten the most with 44. The Packers are next with 35, followed by Dallas with 33.
Cleveland has received the fewest with six.