ESPN’s Mel Kiper is out with another 2017 NFL mock draft. Kiper gave the Kansas City Chiefs a receiver in his first mock draft posted back in January. He sticks with receiver this time but a different name. With the 27th pick, Kiper has the Chiefs taking 6’2, 202 pound East Carolina WR Zay Jones.
To which you might say ... who?
He’s only the NCAA’s leader for receptions in a career (399). It’s still early enough in the process that there are plenty of players we don’t know much about.
Jones, however, has a football background. His father played on the Cowboys three Super Bowl teams in the 1990s and his uncle is former Bengals QB Jeff Blake.
The scouting reports I’ve read rave about his football character and knowledge. Coming from a football family shows that along with his production. On the field, this NFL.com scouting report questions his speed. But when I think of an Andy Reid receiver, I think of speed - DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, Tyreek Hill.
Then there’s the question of whether the Chiefs could even use another receiver. Interestingly, Kiper’s write-up mentions Kelce and HIll as the Chiefs weapons and doesn’t even mention Maclin. The Chiefs offense wasn’t good enough last year but was that because of the receivers? I’m not sure that the onus is completely on them, at least not the top few guys (Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill, Jeremy Maclin). I would point to the lack of a running game and the quarterback before the receivers.
A receiver wouldn’t hurt an offense that needs to get better but there are bigger needs for the Chiefs entering 2017. If they did take a receiver, it would really make me wonder about Maclin’s future.
Still on the board in this mock draft Stanford RB Christian McCaffrey. I would consider him, too.