Imagine you're in charge of the Kansas City Chiefs. The college season ends and you start to gather all of the information from your scouts and coaches while you create your own 'big board' of available players. Then imagine there isn't a quarterback rated high enough to justify taking at the pick you're choosing.
At that point you have a few options and we're going to break those down as if that is what happens for the Chiefs this upcoming off-season.
1. Draft the top quarterback anyways
This seems to be where most fans are at right now. It doesn't matter where he's supposed to be drafted, just take the guy and move on with him. It didn't matter that Tyson Jackson wasn't supposed to be drafted until the middle of the first round, he played a high-value spot and was the best ranked player available at that position. The Chiefs took him at No. 3 and moved on.
I think the same should be true for the quarterback position. It's the highest value spot on a NFL team and you need to take the top guy available.
I've been on the Geno Smith train for a while and I still think he's the first quarterback drafted in April. We have debated this for weeks and will continue to debate the top four or five QB's for the next four months.
2. Take the best player available, period
The teams that collect the most talented players tend to do pretty well I'd think. Obviously coaching matters and other things come into play, and it might not always seem like the best fit in the immediate future, but the draft strategy of taking the best player available simply means collecting top talent. It's hard to go wrong if you're always taking the best player you've scouted, that is unless, you were wrong in the scouting to begin with,
Many will say it's a combination of need + best player available. This makes sense but sometimes the board and available players don't match what you need at that time. The unique thing about the Chiefs situation is there's a lot that's up in the air about the Chiefs future. Who is going to call the shots in the next draft? Is it going to be Scott Pioli? Is Romeo Crennel going to be the head coach, or stay on as defensive coordinator if not? (not likely).
If Crennel isn't coming back will the Chiefs run the same 3/4 2-gapping scheme? A new Coach/General Manager could bring in a whole new look for what the Chiefs are trying to do offensively and defensively. That would then possibly open a pool of players that weren't considered before.
3. Gamble on 2nd round QB or free agent
This has been part of the debate for the last few weeks among Chiefs fans. The question that can only be answered by the people making the decisions is how far apart the gap is between the highest ranked QB, and the 4th or 5th ranked QB. If that gap isn't that wide then what?
You also have to consider the top free agent QBs that could be available in Alex Smith or Michael Vick. But if we're going to consider those as actual options then let's just consider bringing back Quinn and/or Cassel before pouring a stiff one.
I personally think there will be two new faces at quarterback for the Chiefs next season. Whether it's two draft picks or a draft pick + a free agent, there will be two. I think it depends on who's coaching the quarterbacks and their history with bringing along young players. If you're confident in the coach then draft two rookies and let them compete. If you feel the need to have a veteran presence around a young, developing first-round QB then sign a veteran to help bring that guy along.
I can't see the Chiefs not taking a QB within the first two rounds of the upcoming draft. But if the Chiefs didn't take a QB with their first pick then who would you want to be the pick? I think they could find a way to scheme Jarvis Jones onto the field as another LB. You can never have too many pass-rushers.