One of my favorite go-to guys for NFL Draft news and analysis is Wes Bunting from the National Football Post. He's been a writer for various sites, including Scout.com, and his growing stature is for good reason - as he's usually spot-on. We recently asked Wes for his analysis of some of the Chiefs draft interests.
Here in Part One, we talk a bit more about the Chiefs choices in the beginning of the first round. Tomorrow in Part Two, we talk a bit more about second round prospects and individual players, including Vladimir Ducasse, Golden Tate, Jordan Shipley and much more.
AP: The number five position in the draft is where the Chiefs sit in the first round. The guys who would really help most - McCoy, Suh, Berry - might be gone. If that's the case, is there someone really worth taking in that slot? Obviously there are the safe choices of an offensive lineman, but I'm curious if there's someone else we should be considering?
Wes Bunting: Well, after Suh, McCoy and Berry, Russell Okung's a pretty safe pick. Sure, he might not be the sexiest of guys, but honestly Branden Albert was one of the highest rated guards I'd seen and yet he hasn't yet had the type of career because he's be a run-of-the-mill tackle. You'd be surprised how quickly that offensive line would improve if you got a legit offensive tackle in there and kick Branden Albert inside. Some good things could happen.
Dez Bryant could still be around, and he's a dynamic playmaker. Rolando McClain, a linebacker, is as good of a prospect as there is, Matt. Do you want to take a middle linebacker that high? Maybe, maybe not. But he's the type of guy who can anchor a defense and a really talented player. Those are three guys I'd keep an eye on.
More after the jump:AP: If Aaron Curry graded out ultimately as the fourth overall pick in last year's draft, how does McClain compare? Is he worth taking that high as well?
Wes: Oh, absolutely. I'd put McClain significantly higher than Curry to be honest.
Wes: Yeah, he's just that good.
AP: What about Anthony Davis vs. Okung?
Wes: I think there's three guys at that spot. You have Okung, Anthony Davis and Bryan Bulaga. I think the safest is Okung. I think the guy that could end up being the best with the highest ceiling is Anthony Davis. I think he also has the biggest bust potential. And then if you're looking for a guy to get out in space, Bulaga is a nice pick, too. Right now I have Davis a little bit ahead of Okung, just because I like his upside and I think he plays with a little more power, but that's just the way I see it. I think Okung is gonna be a really good left tackle in the NFL, but from an upside standpoint, Davis is a bit better.
AP: You mention Dez Bryant and that's not someone we've even considered in the Top Five and I've never really seem him mentioned around those parts in any mock draft or commentary. How does he grade out compared to last year's top 10 guys taken like Michael Crabtree?
Wes: Oh, yeah, he's definitely better. He's better than Crabtree and, of course, Darrius Heyward-Bey is a joke and a half. He's a powerful route runner. He's not going to stopwatching at 4.55. He's probably a little lower at 4.5. But you can't bump him. He's got suddenness. He's a sharp route runner. He does a great job in tight areas creating initial separation for himself and then he absolute meathooks for hands. He plucks the football out of nowhere and then Sterling Sharpe's it up the field. He's so tough to bring down.
He's not quite as dynamic and I don't want compare anyone to Andre Johnson because he has such vertical speed, but Bryant can go down the field to make a play and attack the football at the highest point. He's such a clean route runner for his size and accelerates out of his breaks well. He's just a big time guy and I like him more than Crabtree to be honest. He's just really good. And if he checks out from a character standpoint, he can come in and be a number one pretty early. He's by far the head of the class.
AP: Since we're looking at some possible safety help, how high regard should we have for Taylor Mays at this point?
Wes: Honesty, it's not even a comparison to Eric Berry. I'm not feeling Taylor Mays at all. He's not even the best safety at the Senior Bowl. I think Nate Allen's a little better than he is and guys like Chad Jones and Morgan Burnett that have come out as juniors and I'm not a big Earl Thomas guy, but you have all these juniors coming out and I think Taylor Mays is a guy who could see his draft stock fall into the second round, to be honest. He really wasn't impressive at all this week.
AP: Is that more of a name pick from his time at USC, then?
Wes: He's 6'3", 230. He's gonna run 4.39 or 4.40 in the 40, so he's a big size/speed guy where some NFL team will think they can clean up his footwork and can make him a more instinctive safety. I think Berry's the head of the class. Then I like Nate Allen, as I said, Morgan Burnett, Chad Jones. But I'd stay far away from Mays in the first round.