One of the positions we've talked about very little leading up to the 2011 NFL draft is running back. That's because the Kansas City Chiefs have one of the best young running backs in the game in RB Jamaal Charles and his complement, RB Thomas Jones, is under contract for another year.
So why would the Chiefs look at any running backs?
At some point, Jones is going to be gone and the Chiefs are going to need someone to pair with Charles, who signed a five-year deal last season. So a need for a running back is there -- we're just not sure when that need will arise.
The Chiefs have the best running attack in the league so I can see an argument for them using a day one or two pick on a running back. Even though they're the best running back tandem right now doesn't mean they'll stay that way very long. Running backs have short lives in the NFL.
On the flip side, the argument against drafting a running back on day one or two also makes sense. History has taught us that you can fix the offensive line and plug a low-rated running back in there and he could still be productive.
I tend to think the Chiefs will draft a running back sometime in the fourth round or after. I think they want to get somebody into the system while Jones is still there. Chiefs head coach Todd Haley has talked often about what a great locker room leader Jones is -- and Charles has also said he's been a big influence -- so I imagine they'd want somebody to learn under Jones, even if for a year.
Check out our latest Chiefs draft interests table. There are a number of running backs on there ranging from first/second round guys like RB Ryan Williams to other late-round players.
Are the Chiefs at some point going to draft a running back in 2011?