FanPost

Your Friend, The Jonathan Baldwin Pick

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From the FanPosts. Enjoyed this read from user pioli-for-prez.. -Joel

Wait! Don't jump! Seriously, get down from the railing, step back inside and think about this, and I'm sure you'll agree that the selection of Pitt WR Jonathan Baldwin is not only insufficient reason to off yourself, but is in fact another great (and, as always, unpredictable) move by the Chiefs front office. My indisputable logic for making this assertion follows after the jump...(the figurative jump, please don't actually jump, that's my whole point)

1. We addressed our unquestioned greatest area of need

Say what you want about RT, OLB, or NT, we had NO ONE lined up at WR2 last year...unless of course you count glorified practice squadders or Kevin Curtis (you shouldn't count either). DMC may be a valuable slot option at some point, but his impact last year was negligible. With Baldwin in tow, our greatest weakness now becomes a legitimate strength.

I think this pick also implies that Scott Pioli/Todd Haley have a lot more faith in some players at alleged "areas of need" that are already on roster. I think Pioli and Romeo Crennel have enough confidence in Andy Studebaker to start him at OLB next year, and don't forget about Cameron Sheffield (which is easy to do as he was injured most/all of last year). Barry Richardson might be seen as a more viable RT option than we or the national media mock-drafters give him credit for. And while I really don't think Ron Edwards has much of a future at NT with the Chiefs, it may be that we are targeting a day 2-3 prospect or possibly a free agent (Shaun Rogers anyone?). Do I think these positions could use an upgrade? Yes, and Pioli may be looking to address them in round 2-3. But I think its important to note that if we wanted Akeem Ayers, Anthony Castonzo, or Phil Taylor they were there for the taking, but we clearly made WR, and Baldwin in particular, a priority.

2. This pick helps the entire offense

Pioli/Haley know perfectly well that you don't win consistenly in today's NFL by running the ball like it's 1949. I think the Baldwin pick represents a shift away from the run-heavy philosophy that the Chiefs have hitherto practiced in the Pioli/Haley era. "But wait" you say..."the Steelers are perennial title contenders, and they're run-heavy." True, but Pittsburgh wins because of its strong D, and even they couldn't have won with the droop-eyed, armless children we had playing WR last year (D-Bowe excepted....most of the time anyway). Besides Pittsburgh is more balanced than most people think, and I think that balance is what Pioli & Co are shooting for with this pick. A real WR2 takes pressure off DBowe, opens up the middle for DMC, gives Cassel more (legitimate) receiving options, and takes defenders out of the box to help open up the running game. Try doing all that with a vanilla RT (racial inferences not intended). 

I'm not saying that now we're gonna become the 2007 Patriots, but at least the pick allows us to build a strong passing attack to complement our beastly ground game.

3. Baldwin was the target all along

I have no more insight into Pioli's draft logic than anyone else, but read between the lines: Baldwin works with Larry Fitz in the offseason, who undoubtedly discusses the prospect with Haley. The Chiefs visit with Baldwin and come away impressed. Look at how the Chiefs maneuvered around the first round and it becomes obvious that they were targeting Baldwin with the pick. How else would you explain the aforementioned passing on widely-mocked players like Ayers and Taylor? I think the move down merely provided a nice little bonus, which segues nicely into my next point...

4. We get an additional 3rd round pick, and a darn good one at that

In Pioli's hands, an early 3rd rounder can easily mean another instant-impact starter. Just think, by trading down 6 spots, the Chiefs may have gained a Tony Moeaki-caliber player. Or maybe an Alex Magee-caliber player, but after last year's draft I think a little optimism is not unwarranted. AND, we were still able to get the player we wanted all along. This is the kind of savvy dealing I was hoping for when we hired Pioli.

5. Baldwin is a truly exciting pick

Seriously, would you be up at 2am friday morning scouring YouTube for highlight after highlight of Gabe Carimi? If you haven't watched some Baldwin clips yet, stop reading this and go do so. Its pretty awe-inspiring stuff. Then it hits you that this guy is gonna have an arrowhead on his helmet this fall, and it gives you chills (at least it did me). Does he have some character concerns? Maybe, but clearly not enough to scare Pioli/Haley away from his immense physical talent and potential. And not enough to disqualify him from being part of the "right 53", or else he wouldn't have been picked. 

I've been very excited to be a Chiefs fan since Pioli was hired (actually, since Peterson was fired), but maybe never more than now, and that includes clinching the division last year. The Baldwin pick means that we won't settle for a one-and-done division championship, that we aren't content with being a one-trick pony on offense, and that we are finally mature enough as a team to stop building for tomorrow and start drafting for today. So join me in welcoming Jon Baldwin to KC with open arms, he really is here to help.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.

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