Most of our conversations surrounding the Kansas City Chiefs and cornerbacks have revolved around Michigan State CB Trae Waynes (if he falls) and Wake Forest CB Kevin Johnson. ESPN's Adam Teicher selected Johnson in both the LA Times beat writer mock draft and ESPN's beat writer mock draft. I have championed Johnson and Waynes as well.
That said ... it seems not enough people are mentioning Washington CB Marcus Peters. This is Jon Gruden's favorite cornerback in the draft. Mel Kiper seems to agree that the talent is there.
"This kid is a heck of a football player," Kiper said on an ESPN draft show this week. "As a press corner, the way he gets in the face of these receivers, he doesn't back down from any challenge. He's a supremely confident football player. He's physical, he'll tackle and he's enthusiastic."
"Everyone says the same thing," Rapoport said about the Chiefs. "Aren't [Andy] Reid and [John] Dorsey going to draft a fat guy? That's what everyone says. They need a receiver and DGB did visit and he's local so I could see that. Here's a name to watch there: Marcus Peters. That could be a guy, they brought him into their building, looked him into the eye and wanted to make sure he fit into their culture. If they liked what they saw, this could make sense."
Peters is just under six foot and weighs 197 pounds which makes him heavier than both Waynes and Johnson. He's also a better tackler than both of those players and, as Gruden pointed out in a draft show with Kiper, teams will run at you all day if you have a corner who can't tackle. The Chiefs ask their corners to be physical and from that standpoint, Peters appears to be more physical than Waynes or Johnson.
So what's the deal here? Why aren't we talking about him more? Answer: The 'ol "character concerns" comes up with Peters.
He was kicked off of his college team at the University of Washington. Coaches don't kick off their best players, especially when they're a top 10 talent. Clearly his disagreement with coaches about whatever it was was fairly serious. This Seattle Times article mentions repeated arguments and run-ins with the coaching staff. His NFL.com profile hits on the same thing, putting it more bluntly, "Doesn't take coaching."
"He would've been a top 10 pick," Kiper said. "Now you're probably getting Marcus Peters between 20 and 32."
Presumably Peters' visit to Kansas City included meeting Andy Reid and / or other coaches because they'll be the ones who would have to work with him.
"If I have a strong locker room with a lot of football character, like the Ravens did [with Jimmy Smith a few years ago], and you feel like you can bring in a character and surround him with football character guys, I think you can really help a young man like this become a football star."
Andy Reid hasn't shied away from players with character questions before. Do the Chiefs have the type of locker room that can handle that?