Tom Curran, sportswriter for Comcast Sports Net, believes a third-round pick will be enough. He's writing concerning the Patriots possible interest, but it's worth exploring on the Chiefs behalf as well. That's because Carolina Panthers receiver Steve Smith is the target, and it fits the tendencies of Scott Pioli during his days with New England.
Pioli certainly adheres to the value of a draft pick and set a precedent with Bill Belichick for storing them like a draft pick bomb shelter was in place in New England. But he's also not averse to trading when he believes the value is there and his team has enough depth and youth in place. It's difficult to say whether Pioli feels that way about the current Chiefs roster, but if so, is a third pick warranted to grab the Panthers icon?
In years past, names like Randy Moss and Corey Dillon were snatched up with draft assets, adding a seasoned player with an extra spark in the tank to the team. The vision of a veteran longing to win before the twilight of his career can change a locker room, and after years of losing in Carolina, Smith could both address the Chiefs need at the receiver position while also providing valuable experience and passion on the field and in the locker room.
Smith will be 32 during the 2011 season (however much of it will be played), so detractors of Smith can point to age and lowered production. Last year's totals were rather pedestrian, after all, registering 46 catches for 554 yards and 2 touchdowns. But remember the Panthers won two total games for a reason. Matt Moore, Brian St. Pierre and Jimmy Clausen all posted miserable passing numbers as the Panthers quarterback options, so Smith hardly had any control of his productivity.
Perhaps a younger receiver can be had with that same third-round choice, a la Jordan Shipley from last year's draft, but we all know how volative rookie receivers can be. If it's possible that a third round draft pick is enough, it could be a chance worth taking.