It's official: the Kansas City Chiefs received TWO compensatory picks in the 2013 NFL Draft. These are extra draft choices for the players they lost in free agency last year. These picks can't be traded.
32 picks were awarded to 16 teams this year. The Baltimore Ravens and Atlanta Falcons lead the way with four each followed by the San Francisco 49ers and Tennessee Titans with three each. Since 1994 the Ravens lead all NFL teams with 37 compensatory picks. Second? Those Green Bay Packers. Hmm, John Dorsey...
Compensatory picks are based on a secret formula of how many free agents you lost versus how many you gained in the previous year. So this year, for example, is determined by looking at the 2012 free agency class. If you lost more free agents than you gained, you're eligible for compensatory picks. For the Chiefs, that means losing Brandon Carr, Kyle Orton, Barry Richardson and Le'Ron McClain (three of those to multi-year deals, mind you) and gaining Peyton Hillis and Brady Quinn.
True unrestricted free agents, guys like Brandon Carr whose contract had expired and he hit the market, are the free agents that are counted. Free agents who were cut by their previous teams, like Eric Winston last year (and this year), aren't included in the formula. So, yes, there is some more strategy involved in signing players than you may realize.
Additionally, factors such as the contract the player received from their new team and how much they played in the previous season, are included. So a player like Carr, who received a big deal and played all 16 games for the Cowboys, is going to be a bigger factor in the formula than someone like Peyton Hillis, who signed a one-year deal and didn't play all season.
A total of 32 compensatory picks are handed out. Those who quality for picks are given theirs and then extra compensatory picks are tacked onto the end of the seventh round in draft order.
The good part about the Chiefs 2012 free agent class, which kinda looks like a bust now, is that the big moves were for players who weren't true unrestricted free agents (those who had been cut by their previous team). Eric Winston, Stanford Routt and Kevin Boss to name a few. Those players didn't count in the formula so that's nice for compensatory picks. (Would've been a lot nicer if they worked out.)
Got all that? OK, it's kind of useless knowledge because we're all just guessing here. The compensatory pick formula isn't public knowledge so it's not as easy as plugging numbers into a formula. We think we have a basic idea of how it works ... but that's it.
Here's a list of all the Chiefs draft picks (I'll update it with the pick numbers)
Round 1, pick 1 (1)
Round 3, pick 1 (63)
Round 3 (96)
Round 4, pick 2
Round 5, pick 1
Round 6, pick 2
Round 6 (204)
Round 7, pick 1