Montana is granted Chief wish 49ers work out deal for quarterback

April 21, 1993|By Rick Plumlee | Rick Plumlee,Knight-Ridder News Service

KANSAS CITY, MO — KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The circus is over, Joe Montana's act is coming to Kansas City.

The Chiefs and San Francisco finally reached a compromise last night and completed the trade for the 49ers quarterback.

"I felt if we kept talking and kept the line of communications open," said Chiefs president/general manager Carl Peterson, "we'd find the answer."

Peterson didn't want to give the details of that answer until after the 49ers make their announcement today, but a club source said the Chiefs gave up their first-round pick in Sunday's NFL draft in exchange for Montana, safety David Whitmore and the 49ers' third-round choice in 1994.

The point of compromise was on the second draft choice. San Francisco wanted to give up a fourth-round pick, the Chiefs wanted a second. Peterson and 49ers president Carmen Policy settled on the third-rounder next year.

"We came to a meeting of the minds," Peterson said. "No question there was some give and take from both sides."

Montana and Peterson met last Friday and agreed on a new three-year contract. But over the weekend, the 49ers tried to persuade Montana to remain in San Francisco by naming him the "designated" starter over Steve Young, last season's league MVP.

But Montana responded Monday by saying he still wanted to go to Kansas City.

"I understand and appreciate the emotion of this trade for them," said Peterson. "Joe was the greatest quarterback the 49ers have ever had and possibly the greatest ever in the NFL. This was not an easy trade for them to make."

Jerry Rice, Montana's favorite 49ers target, told the Santa Rosa Press Democrat that the trade was "kind of hard to swallow right now.

It's going to set in later. I think people here feel like Joe really owed them a lot. It should be vice versa; people should take their hat off to him."

Kansas City can't help but be excited. Even if Montana will be 37 in June and has played just two quarters in the past two seasons after undergoing elbow surgery.

"We all know Joe hasn't played much the last two years," Peterson said of the four-time Super Bowl winner. "We've given him quite an extensive physical and worked him out.

"We've addressed the elbow surgery. Our doctors have spent a lot of time with him. We feel good about Joe's physical condition at this point."

Coach Marty Schottenheimer likes the looks of Kansas City's offense better with Montana.

"We obviously have a lot of catching up to do," he said. "Our offensive coaches are going to be busy, but we think he'll obviously give this organization a chance to improve."

Montana will be trying to pick up an offense that finished 25th in the NFL last year.

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