Revisiting the Kansas City Chiefs 2003 Draft

Round 1, #27 overall, RB Larry Johnson -- You can't really complain here. The Chiefs traded down with the Pittsburgh Steelers, who wanted safety Troy Polamalu so bad that they gave the Chiefs their 3rd and 6th round picks to move up. With the exception of last season, Larry Johnson has been a monster for the Chiefs. When Priest Holmes went down with a spinal injury in November 2005, Larry saved the Chiefs' butts by rushing for 1,750 yards and twenty touchdowns in the remaining nine games of the season. My point is, if the Chiefs don't draft Larry Johnson, there would have been nobody on the depth chart after Priest Holmes' injury that the Chiefs could have ridden like they've done with LJ. The ability to lose on Pro Bowl player and just insert another does not happen often. Excellent pick. Grade: A

Notables taken recently after this pick: CB Nnamdi Asomugha

Round 2, #47 overall, LB Kawika Mitchell -- I didn't have any particular issues with Kawika Mitchell's play in Kansas City. I thought he was a pretty good middle linebacker. He left Kansas City with barely a peep made about it. He had four solid years with Kansas City and started 16 games the last three. A good pick by the Chiefs. Grade: B

Notables taken recently after this pick: WR Anquan Boldin, DE Osi Umenyiora

Round 3, #92 overall, DB Julian Battle -- Talk about a first day pick with minimal impact. Battle barely played for the Chiefs before they cut him in training camp in 2006. Since then, he's been on the Redskins' practice squad and has ultimately ended up playing in the CFL. He was a player who had "questionable work ethic" coming out of college. A total bust whose pick is ever more bitter because Pro Bowler Asante Samuel was drafted the next round.

Notables taken recently after this pick: RB Justin Fargas

Round 4, #113 overall, T Brett Williams -- A high school teammate of Bobby Sippio (so says Wikipedia), Williams is a draft pick that I completely forgot about. He was gone about as quickly as he arrived in Kansas City, only sticking around until 2004. The Chiefs offensive line was absolutely dominant in 2003 -- probably the height of its dominance -- and Williams couldn't break into the rotation. Bad picks like this are the reason that we're in the hole we're in with the current offensive line. Grade: F

Notables taken recently after this pick: CB Asante Samuel

Round 5, #153 overall, T Jordan Black -- Another 2003 pick who left Kansas City with little fanfare after his original contract was up. Jordan Black never was a favorite in Kansas City. Black started 29 games for the Chiefs in his four years in KC and was a constant fixture on the line for the last two. Black wasn't very good but the Chiefs were able to squeeze quite a bit of value out of him for a 5th round pick. Black is currently playing backup on the Texans' offensive line and he did not start a game last year. It would appear his stock has dropped dramatically. Grade: C-

Notables taken recently after this pick: None

Round 6, #189 overall, DE Jimmy Wilkerson -- Wilkerson has only started five games in his five years with the Chiefs, which isn't an indictment of his ability when you're playing behind Jared Allen and a first round draft pick in Tamba Hali. The fact that Wilkerson is a 6th rounder who's still even on the team is a testament to at least his value as a back up. The Chiefs signed him to a one-year offer last year and he's an UFA this year. I would say this pick was worth it, considering the mileage we've gotten out of Wilkerson. It's tough to gauge his potential when he's played so little. Grade: B-

Notables taken recently after this pick: LB Cato June

Round 7, #230 overall, DT Montique Sharpe -- Sharpe spent the entire 2004 season on the Chiefs practice squad as well as playing in NFL Europe in 2004. He never played much beyond a few games in his rookie season. Good defensive tackles are hard enough to figure out in the first round so I can't imagine trying to gauge DT talent this late. Hey, at least the guy actually saw some action. Grade: D+

Notables taken recently after this pick: S Siddeeq Shabazz (Kidding. I just really like his name. Even more -- the guy now plays for the Edmonton Eskimos. Hell of a name. I like the alliteration. Okay back to the draft.)

Round 7, #252, DB Willie Pile -- The guy actually played in sixteen games for two straight seasons -- in 2004 with the Chiefs and in 2005 with the Cowboys. Pile now plays safety in the CFL. Grade: C+

Notables taken recently after this pick: None

Overall draft grade: C+

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