Trying out a new semi-regular feature here using my last name, Stagner. I’ll compile some random thoughts and only-mildly-hot takes, and one crazy idea called from the upside down just so I can honor the “Stagner things” theme. (H/T @2_Ring_Circus for the logo)
- There’s not room on this roster for 10 draft picks. This is a perfect year for a trade up or trading into 2018. The Chiefs won’t have comp picks next year. They have four tradable comp picks this year. If they walked away with only six or seven players from this draft, but one of them is the QB of the future, I think we’d all consider that a good use of 10 picks.
- There aren’t any currently URGENT needs for the Chiefs. Looking at the projected 53-man roster, they need a QBoTF and could use an upgrade at RB, TE, OLB, ILB, CB. If they had to line up tomorrow without any draft picks, UDFAs or additional free agents added, they’d be fine (like, 11-5 fine). The draft for John Dorsey is all about building for future needs, depth and special teams. Bad teams draft guys that have to start day one because their rosters aren’t good. The Chiefs aren’t a bad team anymore. Rookies should have to dominate to start as rookies (I see you, Chris Jones).
- Numbers don’t matter, at least in terms of the depth chart. Media and fans tend to obsess about whether a guy is a true No. 1 WR or No. 2 or say things like the Chiefs have to get a No. 2 CB across from Marcus Peters. The Chiefs (and most teams) use a number of players in a rotation, and use skill sets and matchups instead of picking starters and sticking with them. At cornerback, Peters, Steven Nelson and Terrance Mitchell are likely the first three guys on the field. Peters will stick to his side, per defensive coordinator Bob Sutton’s preference, and the others will have lots of snaps on the other side and in the slot. At wide receiver, it doesn’t matter that there isn’t a true No. 2 across from Jeremy Maclin. They’ll use Tyreek Hill, Chris Conley, Albert Wilson, and hopefully Demarcus Robinson in various combinations and matchups. They can potentially upgrade both CB and WR in the draft, but they don’t need to chase a mythical No. 2. Just get good players that have skill sets that can help.
- Drafting a QB after round two is a waste of draft capital. Go early, or skip it entirely. The Chiefs aren’t in the market for a long term backup QB, nor are they so set at QB that they can buy a lottery ticket in the later rounds. Yes, there are exceptions: Dak Prescott, Russell Wilson and Tom Brady are just that. For every one of those guys, there are a dozen Aaron Murrays and Kevin Hogans. If KC wants a good backup, they can sign one cheap in free agency. If they want the QB of the future, they need to invest in one early in the draft. Trade up if they have to. It’s time.
- You never draft a RB early, but .... The most fun and impactful non-QB addition to the Chiefs offense that could come out of round one of the draft would be Christian McCaffrey, RB out of Stanford. The guy is a natural at both RB and slot WR. He’d be a dynamic threat at running back that the Chiefs sorely missed when Jamaal Charles was out. Tyreek Hill will be a full time WR, and the Chiefs would feature matchup problems all over the field. Note: I believe McCaffrey will be gone before pick 27, and I want a QB.
- I’m working on a review of Gavin Escobar. I think there’s a chance he’s a guy that could help the team more than we think. It’s not a high probability, but he’s a red zone threat and his blocking may not be as bad as advertised.
- Speaking of Escobar and running backs. GM John Dorsey has an interesting way of playing the draft’s strengths and weaknesses. In 2014, it was a historic wide receiver draft featuring Mike Evans, Odell Beckham, Jr, Sammy Watkins, Martavis Bryant, Brandin Cooks and John Brown, among others. The Chiefs, with a big need at the position address it with De’Anthony Thomas in the fourth and Weston Dressler from the CFL. They would go on to have zero WR TDs that year. This year, it’s considered a very strong draft for RBs and TEs. Dorsey added CJ Spiller and now Escobar. Could he again zig when others zag? If so, will it work out better this time around?
From the Upside Down
I wonder if Jamaal Charles could find work as a wide receiver? Teams don’t value running backs, especially those approaching or over age 30. Charles is a special talent when healthy, which has obviously been the problem. What if he worked out as a receiver? He’d take less punishment, but would have an opportunity to make plays. If that didn’t work, he’d be a hell of a kick returner. Yes, I’m probably just grasping at straws for a way to see JC on the field again.