Here we are at the end of the second day of the draft and I think it's safe to say none of us saw this coming. I mean it has generally been assumed that the Chiefs would take a Wide Receiver and a Safety. After all those seemed to be our biggest issues, and you can throw the offensive line in there as well. So what does Dorsey do? He takes a 4-3 DE from Auburn, who most draftniks had rated in the second round and then he takes a no-name corner back from Rice. RICE!!! who knew they played football?
The crazy thing is if you will mentally playback in your mind the end of last season, you will remember that the defense (which was the best in the league through the first nine games) almost completely fell apart. The injuries to Hali and Houston played a roll in diminishing our pass rush and when this happened our vaunted secondary had it's warts brought to light. With as fast as the front seven seemed to be, the secondary was rather pedestrian. Cooper who had played so amazingly early found himself abused by Payton Manning and his confidence seemed shattered. Flowers, was also burned by Manning although his pro bowl status causes most of us to give him a pass. Granted he played well in the playoff game, his injury showed how truly soft our secondary depth was.
Now consider this, before you go all Marquise Lee this and Donte Moncrief that. If Alex Smith and his band of merry men could put up such great numbers in the second half of the season and Andy Reid is an offensive guru, wouldn't it make sense that they would look to upgrade the pass rush and secondary first in this draft? I mean they did address these positions in Free Agency as well. Walker should be a pass rushing upgrade over Tyson Jackson and our new slot corner Chris Owens should be an upgrade over Dunta Robinson. The offense was not the problem at the end of the year, the defense was. A lot of us get overconfident in the defense because of all the Pro Bowl players but the lack of depth and the drop off in play making ability obviously was noted by the coaching staff and front office.
One thing from Dorsey and Reid talking about Dee Ford that I think might be overlooked is how they absolutely gushed about his play in big games. Dorsey and Reid both talked about his play making ability in the national championship game. Dee Ford's selection was about more than finding the future replacement for Tamba Hali, they want a play maker.And they hope and believe the Ford is that guy. Time will tell, but that's a big reason Dee Ford is a Chief whether you like it or not.
Now, another thing we can learn from this draft is what they believe about positional depth and their draft board. One of the most shallow "positions" or skill groups in this draft was pass rushers. Think about this, the Eagles reached for Marcus Smith in the first round because they misread the tea leaves.
When the Eagles traded back from 22 to 26 last night they targeted Dee Ford a pass rusher from Auburn, but Andy Reid & KC took Ford at 23— Jeff Skversky (@JeffSkversky) May 9, 2014
It seems the Chargers traded up to #50 to get the last of the truly high potential pass rushing specialist with their pick of Jeremiah Attaochu. So if all and I mean all of the truly gifted pass rushers are gone then it was imperative for the Chiefs to act early if that was their big concern. The other three positions of interest (DB, WR and Oline) are relatively deep and this brings us to who is left that might interest KC.
So let's look at Oline first (with Rating from NFL.com):
|Duvernay-Tardif, Laurent||OT||6'5"||321||McGill (Canada)||5.4|
|Bodine, Russell||C||6'3"||310||North Carolina||5.3|
|Larsen, Tyler||C||6'4"||313||Utah St.||5.2|
|Edwards, Kadeem||OG||6'4"||313||Tennessee St.||5.2|
Richardson, Yankey, Duvernay-Tardif, Dozier, Fleming, Johnson and Edwards are all probably of interest to Dorsey and Reid. I would keep an eye on Duvernay-Tardif he's apparently very smart and versatile.
Next, let's look at what's left at WR:
|Ellington, Bruce||WR||5'9"||197||South Carolina||5.3|
|Janis, Jeff||WR||6'3"||219||Saginaw Valley St.||5.3|
|Jones, T.J.||WR||6'0"||188||Notre Dame||5.3|
|Fowler, Bennie||WR||6'1"||217||Michigan St.||5.2|
|Burse, Isaiah||WR||5'10"||188||Fresno St.||5.1|
|Hazel, Matt||WR||6'1"||198||Coastal Carolina||5.1|
The small quick guys would be: Ellington, Patton, Saunders, Gallon, Herron and Reese. If Dorsey and Reid want bigger: Norwood, Abbrederis, Bryant, Janis, Coleman, Street, Washington, Grant and Hazel. Abbrederis is a great route runner and Smith would love him. Hazel, Janis and Grant may all be sleepers. Janis may remind Dorsey of Jordy Nelson. Bryant and Washington have got all the talent in the world and could be real gems but it will take some work from Culley to bring out the most in those two.
Finally, let's look at DB (S and CB):
|Dowling, Jonathan||SS||6'3"||190||Western Kentucky||5.3|
|Alexander, Mo||SS||6'1"||220||Utah St.||5.2|
|Berhe, Nat||SS||5'10"||193||San Diego St.||5.2|
|Lewis, Isaiah||SS||5'10"||211||Michigan St.||5.1|
|Boston, Tre||SS||6'0"||204||North Carolina||5.1|
|Darby, Alden||FS||5'10"||192||Arizona State||5.1|
|Reynolds, Rashaad||CB||5'10"||189||Oregon St.||5.4|
|Exum, Antone||CB||6'0"||213||Virginia Tech||5.4|
|Johnson, Dontae||CB||6'2"||200||N.C. State||5.3|
|Benwikere, Bene||CB||5'11"||195||San Jose St.||5.2|
|Dixon, Brandon||CB||5'11"||203||Northwest Missouri St.||5.2|
|Jackson, Bennett||CB||6'0"||195||Notre Dame||5.2|
|Hampton, Victor||CB||5'9"||197||South Carolina||5.2|
|Thomas, Jemea||CB||5'9"||192||Georgia Tech||5.1|
|Washington, Todd||CB||5'11"||196||Southeastern Louisiana||5.1|
|Westbrooks, Lavelle||CB||5'11"||186||Georgia Southern||5.1|
There are a lot of good late rounders still available and some the Chiefs even looked at. With the Safeties: Vereen, Dowling, Huff, Ballentine, Bailey, Ladler and Reynolds would all be worth a look. McGill, Exum and Johnson could all be crossovers from CB to S. Desir and Aikens would be good developmental prospects.
So there is a lot left for Dorsey and crew to look at tomorrow. I would guess we try to find a WR in the fourth, come back with the line in the fifth and then use the sixth for whatever else. However, a play maker like Telvin Smith OLB (nickle LB) might be too hard to pass on if he's there in the fourth. You may not like the picks but there is a method to the madness. Here's hoping Dorsey finds the next great thing in the later rounds.