FanPost

Chiefs 2018 draft interviews, visits and interests

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

From the FanPosts -Joel

The news is trickling out about who the Chiefs have interviewed during the draft process. I always find this part of the process more like detective work. Last year, I wrote a fanpost and the only pick that was obvious from the draft visits and interviews was Patrick Mahomes. However, that article also pointed out that in 2015, our 1st (Marcus Peters), 2nd (Mitch Morse) and 4th round (Ramik Wilson) picks all were known to have had contact with KC a time or two prior to the draft.

Already this year there seems to be more information about the Chiefs interests. And Terez Paylor pointed out recently that the formal combine interview process has given insight into future Chief early picks:

A year ago, the Chiefs formally interviewed quarterback Patrick Mahomes. The Chiefs eventually traded up 17 spots to select Mahomes with the 10th overall pick in the NFL Draft. In 2016, the Chiefs formally met with defensive end Chris Jones at the NFL Combine, and he ended up being their first pick that year. And in 2015, they formally met with cornerback Marcus Peters at the NFL Combine.

Chiefs to take deeper look at some players at NFL Combine


Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs/article203345339.html#storylink=cpy

Each team is given 60 formal interviews at the combine. We know about 26 of the formal interviews. However, we also know some informal interviews as well. In order to give a greater perspective, I'll include the prospect's combine info and NFL.com's projected draft projection and where applicable the SPARQ score.

Formal Combine Interview:

Since Offensive Linemen were one of the first groups, it only makes sense to begin there:

Joseph Noteboom - OT TCU 6'5 309lbs. 34 3/8 Arms, 9 5/8 Hands

Noteboom was 4th among OL in the 40 with a 4.96. He was second in the short shuttle with a 4.44. He tied for 8th in the bench with 27 reps. He tied for 11th in the 3 cone drill with a 7.65 which matched top Guard prospect Quenton Nelson.

He is projected to go in the 3rd round according to NFL.com

His pSPARQ score is 98.3, with a Z-score of -.04 and an NFL% of 32.8. Everest is the guru on SPARQ and he outlined the Dorsey-led Chiefs preferences at OL back in 2016. He also pointed out Dorsey's Chiefs only drafted one OL who had a SPARQ score under 100 (Zach Fulton - 85.5).

Will Hernandez - G UTEP 6'2 327lbs. 32 Arms, 9 7/8 Hands

Hernandez started his ascent up draft boards at the Senior Bowl and he continued building his momentum through the combine. The likelihood of him being available at KC's 2nd round pick is minimal, however Veach knows his board. Hernandez showed speed and power, running a 5.15 40 (8th among OL) and putting up 37 reps on the bench. Tops among linemen and 3rd overall at the combine. His 7.59 3 cone was good enough for 7th among offensive linemen.

He is projected to go in the 1st or 2nd round according to NFL.com

His pSPARQ score is 100.6, with a Z-score of -0.2 and an NFL% of 43.3. This tweet sums up Hernandez pretty well:

Jamil Demby - G Maine 6'4 319lbs. 33 3/4 Arms, 10 3/4 Hands

Demby is an interesting prospect and proof that Veach leaves no stone unturned. Apparently, he made an impression on the Chiefs as they scheduled a formal interview with him after speaking with him informally. His numbers were not impressive. He ran a 5.58 / 40, benched 17 reps, had a 7.86 3 cone and a 4.95 short shuttle.

He is currently projected to be a 4th round selection by NFL.com. However, Lance Zierlein makes this observation as to why Demby will get a second look by a few teams:

Demby isn't an elite athlete, but his intelligence and ability to punch, move his feet, and anchor in pass protection make him an intriguing prospect.

NFL.com Prospect Jamil Demby

Demby's SPARQ numbers are not good. His pSPARQ score is 77.5, with a Z-score of -2.1 and an NFL% of 1.9. If Veach takes Demby, then you have to figure he really liked the tape.

Mark Andrews - TE Oklahoma 6'5 256lbs. 33 1/2 Arms, 10 1/2 Hands

Veach spoke of surrounding Mahomes with talent. And when you consider Travis Kelce's concussion history over the last couple years, looking at TE makes a lot of sense. So why not look for a Kelce clone. They are nearly the same height / weight. Andrews ran a 4.67 / 40, Kelce ran a 4.63 at his combine. The real difference would seem to be that Andrew's burst, agility and catch radius is far inferior to Kelce's.

Andrews is currently projected to be a 3rd or 4th round pick according to NFL.com

His pSPARQ score is 109.7, with a Z-score of -0.6 and an NFL% of 28.8.

Ian Thomas - TE Indiana 6'4 259lbs. 34 1/8 Arms, 11 1/2 Hands

This dude has mitts. Where Andrews matches Kelce from a speed standpoint, Thomas is comparable to Kelce in burst, agility and catch radius. Thomas ran a 4.74 / 40 with a 36 vert, 123 broad jump and 7.15 3 cone, He is actually very similar to Jermichael Finley the great Green Bay Packer TE.

He is projected to go in the 2nd or 3rd round according to NFL.com

His pSPARQ score is 129.5, with a Z-score of 0.9 and an NFL% of 81.9

Jordan Akins - TE UCF 6'3 249lbs. 32 1/2 Arms, 9 1/2 Hands

Akins didn't participate in any of the drills at the combine. He is older having tried the Pro Baseball route, only to find himself back at Central Florida.

He is projected to the 6th or 7th round by NFL.com.

Davon Grayson - WR ECU 6'1 199lbs. 31 3/8 Arms, 9 3/8 Hands

Grayson has a history of injuries during college. He ran a 4.51 / 40. He benched 19 which was good for 6th among WRs. He also tied for 6th in the broad, jumping 124 inches.

He is projected to go in the 6th or 7th round according to NFL.com.

Duke Ejiofor - EDGE Wake Forest 6'4 264lbs. 34 7/8 Arms, 9 3/4 Hands

Ejiofor was injured and did not participate in the combine drills. His measurements are pretty similar to Justin Houston's with the exception of hand size (Houston's are huge).

Duke is projected to go in the 4th or 5th round.

Anthony Winbush - EDGE Ball State 6'1 249lbs. 32 1/8 Arms, 9 1/4 Hands

Winbush only participated in two drills - the bench and the broad jump. He put up 25 reps on the bench and jumped 110 inches.

He is projected as a 7th round or PFA by NFL.com.

Jeff Holland - EDGE Auburn 6'2 249lbs. 33 1/2 Arms, 10 1/2 Hands

Holland also only participated in two drills. He ran a 4.79 / 40 and broad jumped 116.0 inches. His performance was very disappointing and you have to think he will do everything at his pro day to attempt to salvage his draft stock.

NFL.com projects him to go in the 3rd or 4th round.

However, you have to think that this might be a little bit high since he seems to be a poor man's Dee Ford.

Davin Bellamy - EDGE Georgia 6'5 255lbs. 33 1/4 Arms, 9 1/2 Hands

Bellamy only did 15 reps on the bench and that was his combine. He is going to do everything at his pro day. Not sure if he has the juice to be anything other than a special teamer.

His is projected as a 7th rounder or a PFA according to NFL.com.

James Hearns - EDGE Louisville 6'3 239lbs. 32 1/2 Arms, 9 3/8 Hands

The running theme with the Chiefs is trying to find a diamond in the rough among these edge rushers. Hearns ran a 4.89 40 and benched 22. His game film might show more

He is projected to go in the 5th or 6th round according to NFL.com.

Chris Covington - OLB Indiana 6'2 245lbs. 32 1/2 Arms, 9 1/4 Hands

Covington ran a 4.78 and benched 23 reps.

He is projected to be a 7th round or PFA.

Dorian O'Daniel - OLB Clemson 6'1 223lbs. 31 1/8 Arms, 9 Hands

O'Daniel did a majority of the drills and he did them well. 4.61 / 40, 21 reps on the bench and a 32 vert. He was #1 among LBs for the 3 cone and the short shuttle.

His pSPARQ score is 125.4, with a Z-score of 0.4 and an NFL% of 64.0

While he will probably climb up draft boards after the combine, NFL.com projects him as a 6th rounder.

Joel Iyiegbuniwe - LB WKU 6'1 229lbs. 32 5/8 Arms, 10 1/4 Hands

Another guy who helped himself at the combine. 4.6 / 40 and a 35 vert.

His pSPARQ score is 121.0, with a Z-score of 0.0 and an NFL% of 51.9

He is a 7th round / PFA projection by NFL.com

Nathan Shepherd - DT Fort Hays St. 6'5 315lbs. 32 3/8, 10 1/8 Hands

This guy has Chris Jones measurables. Similar height / weight. Jones' arms are longer and his hands are slightly bigger but Shepherd is right there, Check out their comparisons:

40 - Jones 5.03, Shepherd 5.09

Vert - Jones 24.5, Shepherd 31.0

Broad - Jones 106, Shepherd 112

3 cone - Jones 7.44, Shepherd 7.5

Short Shuttle - Jones 4.62, Shepherd 4.53

SPARQ:

Jones pSPARQ score is 115.5, with a Z-score of 0.3 and an NFL% of 62.3

Shepherd pSPARQ score is 116.4, with a Z-score of 0.4 and an NFL% of 64.7

Prior to the combine NFL.com had him as a 4th or 5th round pick. Likely a second rounder now.

Tim Settle - DT Virginia Tech 6'3 329lbs. 33 Arms, 9 1/8 Hands

Talk about a train wreck of a combine. Where Shepherd was smooth, Settle was sloppy.

If you want to find any hope for Settle, his numbers were similar to Brandon Williams combine experience with the exception of Settle not benching and Williams putting up 38 reps. So we will have to see what the pro day brings.

Settle's pSPARQ score is 83.0, with a Z-score of -2.0 and an NFL% of 2.2.

He was projected by NFL.com to go in the 1st or 2nd round prior to the combine.

Derrick Nnadi - DT FSU 6'1 317lbs. 33 1/2 Arms, 9 7/8 Hands

Derrick was another of the defensive linemen who had a rather poor combine. His 40 was a 5.38 and an 8.15 3 cone. If you are looking for a positive there is this:

His pSPARQ score is 87.3, with a Z-score of -1.7 and an NFL% of 4.4.

He has a 4th round projection from NFL.com

Jalyn Holmes - DE Ohio State 6'5 283lbs. 34 Arms, 10 Hands

Holmes had a good combine. He ran 6th among DL for the 40 with a 4.82. This is a pretty good insight:

He is projected to go in the 3rd round by NFL.com

Armani Watts - S Texas A&M 5'10 202lbs. 31 Arms, 8 6/8 Hands

The Dallas Cowboys did a nice review of Watts, who is the epitome of a boom or bust prospect.

NFL.com projects Watts higher as a 2nd or 3rd round pick.

Trey Walker - S Louisiana-Lafayette 6'0 206lbs. 33 4/8 Arms, 8 6/8 Hands

Walker participated in all of the combine drills. He ran a 4.51 / 40, 14 reps on the bench, 33 vert, 7.0 3 cone and 4.28 short shuttle.

His pSPARQ score is 111.7, with a z-score of -0.7 and an NFL% of 25.7.

NFL.com has him projected in the 5th or 6th round.

Jaire Alexander - CB Louisville 5'10 196lbs. 31 1/8 Arms, 9 1/2 Hands

Alexander blew the combine away and likely any shot the Chiefs had at drafting him.

His pSPARQ is second among corners with a score is 131.3, with a Z-score of 1.4 and an NFL% of 91.3.

Although if we could get him...

His NFL .com projection is 2nd or 3rd round.

Donte Jackson - CB LSU 5'11 178lbs. 29 1/2 Arms, 8 3/4 Hands

Speed kills and Jackson has it in spades. However, is he a workout warrior?

Not sure a Tampa-2 corner is what KC needs.

NFL.com projects Jackson as a 1st or 2nd round pick.

Tarvarus McFadden - CB FSU 6'02 204lbs. 32 1/2 Arms, 10 3/8 Hands

He ran slow for a CB at the combine posting a 4.67 / 40 and he didn't look good running it either. He did rank 4th among CBs with a 38.5 vert. His numbers compare somewhat to former Seattle Seahawk corner Brandon Browner, however, Browner was about 2 inches taller and 20 pounds heavier at his combine. Here is the quandary with McFadden, has shown ball skills in his college career but...

NFL.com had him projected to go in the 2nd or 3rd round prior to the combine.

Rashaan Gaulden - CB Tennessee 6'1 193lbs. 30 3/4 Arms, 9 3/4 Hands

This guys's measurables are pretty bad. He ran a 4.61 / 40, 8 reps on the bench, a 30 vert, 119 broad and a 7.16 3 cone.

His pSPARQ is second worst among corners with a score is 97.4, with a z-score of -1.9 and an NFL% of 2.7. It seems with Gaulden you either love him or hate him.

Love:

Hate:

NFL.com doesn't even have a draft grade on him currently.

Carlton Davis - CB Auburn 6'1 206lbs. 32 3/4 Arms, 8 7/8 Hands

Davis put up decent numbers for his size. Ran a 4.53 /40 at the combine and then followed it with a 4.47 at his pro day. He benched 16 reps, had a vert of 34, and a broad of 124.

NFL.com project Davis to go in the 1st or 2nd round and compares him to Richard Sherman.

Nick Nelson - CB Wisconsin 5'11 200lbs, 30 3/4 Arms, 9 1/4 Hands

Nelson had a decent combine. His numbers match up favorably to what Joe Haden put up at his combine.

Haden listed at about 5'11 193lbs has two inch longer arms but the rest of the numbers match up.

Haden - 4.52 / 40, 18 reps, 125 Broad

Nelson - 4.52 / 40, 17 reps, 123 Broad

Then you look at his coverage vs one of the top WR in the draft and maybe you see a little Haden.

NFL.com rates him a 3rd or 4th round prospect.

Informal Combine Interviews:

Including the informals (not a sit-down formal 15 minute type) gives us an idea of who they are looking at and should help once we start finding out about the visits to Arrowhead over the next month. The projections are from NFL.com.

Braden Smith OG Auburn - Projected 3rd or 4th round

Jamarco Jones OT Ohio State - No projection

Brian Allen C MSU - 6th or 7th round projection

Mason Cole C Michigan - 3rd or 4th round projection

Colby Gossett OG App St. - 4th or 5th round projection

Tyler Conklin TE Cent Mich - 5th or 6th round projection

Chris Herndon TE Miami - 4th or 5th round projection

Dallas Goedert TE SDST - 2nd round projection

Durham Smythe TE Notre Dame - 4th or 5th round projection

Logan Woodside QB Toldeo - Priority FA

Riley Ferguson QB Memphis - 5th or 6th round projection

Robert Foster WR Alabama - 6th or 7th round projection

Jordan Lasley WR UCLA - 2nd or 3rd round projection

Jaleel Scott WR NMST - 4th or 5th round projection

Equanimeous St. Brown Notre Dame WR - 3rd or 4th round projection

Auden Tate FSU WR - 4th or 5th round projection

James Washington OK St WR - 2nd round projection

Dylan Cantrell TxTech WR - Priority FA

Keke Coutee TxTech WR - 3rd or 4th round projection

Michael Dickson Texas P - 3rd or 4th round projection

Josh Sweat FSU Edge - 2nd or 3rd round projection

Obo Okoronkwo OU Edge - 4th or 5th round projection

Azeem Victor UW ILB - 7th round or PFA projection

Kenny Young UCLA ILB - 5th or 6th round projection

John Atkins UGA DT - 6th or 7th round projection

Joshua Frazier Alabama DT - Priority FA

DeShon Elliott Texas S - 5th or 6th round projection

Justin Reid Stanford S - 1st or 2nd round projection

Kyzir White WVU S - 2nd or 3rd round projection

Greg Stroman VaTech CB - 4th or 5th round projection

Chandon Sullivan GaSt CB - 7th round or PFA projection

Darius Phillips Western Mich CB - 4th or 5th round projection

Kameron Kelly San Diego St S - 4th round projection

Others:

Guys like Dorrance Armstrong indicated that they met with the Chiefs but didn't identify which manner. Here's some that have been identified as meeting:

Martinas Rankin Miss St. OT - 2nd or 3rd round projection and he actually seems to fit better as a Guard or Center at the next level.

Tyrell Crosby Oregon OT - 2nd or 3rd round projection

Jordan Thomas Miss St. TE - 6th or 7th round projection

David Wells San Diego St. TE - 7th round or PFA projection

Chase Litton Marshall QB - 7th round or PFA projection

Tanner Lee Nebraska QB - 6th or 7th round projection

Martez Valdez-Scalding South Florida WR - 7th round projection

Kentavius Street NCST DE - 7th round or PFA projection

Siran Neal Jacksonville St. S - 4th or 5th round projection

Troy Apke PSU S - 7th round or PFA projection

Brandon Facyson Va Tech CB - 3rd or 4th round projection

Interview Breakdown By Round Grade

Granted combine / pro-day workouts can adjust a draft grade somewhat and some prospects will gain momentum in the process, however, this should give us a general idea of the positions they are looking at according to our draft positioning.

QB (4) - 5th round or later

Obviously, Mahomes is the QBOTF. They may look for a developmental QB to be the 3rd string QB. This would also indicate that they will probably look to FA to find a veteran QB as the back-up.

RB (0) - Not even looking

There have been no known interviews with RBs. Unless Veach is putting off one of the biggest smokescreens of all time, he's happy with Hunt, Ware and West.

WR (10)- 4th round or later, unless a 2nd rounder slides

There were 10 known players that the Chiefs spoke with at the combine. James Washington was the highest profile, however, you have to wonder if he falls to the 3rd with his slower 40. This would seem to indicate that KC will attack the WR position in FA and wait to see if someone drops to them in the draft.

TE (9) - 2nd round or later

The Chiefs had formal interviews with two of the upper echelon TEs (Andrews and Thomas) and an informal one with Travis Kelce clone Dallas Goedert. It seems pretty clear that KC will come out of this draft with another TE. I won't be surprised if we use a 3rd or 4th on another TE. Keep an eye on Ian Thomas, he's a raw talent but could develop into a very good two-way TE.

OT (4) - Late round

The Chiefs pretty much only spoke with developmental prospects at the combine. If a guy like Noteboom falls to them at the top of the 4th round they might take him but for the most part, they did minimal research on OT.

OG / C (6) - 4th round

You can almost bank on KC taking a guard in the 4th round. If Will Hernandez falls to them in the 2nd, Veach might take him to shore up the interior line for both Mahomes and Hunt. However, 4 of the 6 interior prospects have 4th round grades.

EDGE (9) - 4th round or later

KC spoke with about 9 "EDGE" players. Only three of the nine edge players were graded third round or lower. This seems to reiterate that there is a lack of depth at the position in the draft. Chiefs may wait to take a developmental edge player a little later.

DL (7) - 3rd round

Nathan Shepherd, Nnadi, Settle and Holmes are all in the 3rd round range. There were only about 6 Defensive Interior prospects that we know KC met with. This would indicate that FA will be primary avenue but that they will likely try to take a DL in the 3rd.

LB (5)- 6th round

All of the Linebackers they interviewed held grades of late round. Now, Dorian O'Daniel may climb because of an excellent combine, so maybe they take him in the 4th if they really like him.

CB (10) - 2nd round / 3rd round

It would seem that KC's primary objective for the draft will be a cornerback. They met with 10 corners. They might even take a couple, going with a larger corner (Davis, McFadden, Stroman, and Gaulden) or a speedster (Alexander, Jackson)

Safety (8) - 2nd round / 3rd round

KC spoke with 8 safeties at the combine. 3 of the 8 have grades that include the 2nd round.

Special Teams (1) - 5th round

KC spoke with Michael Dickson from Texas and while some think he is a 3rd round talent, I find it hard to believe that any team would spend a 3rd round pick on a punter.

Overall:

It seems that Veach might surprise with a TE early. However, you can expect secondary and the defensive line before the 4th round. I'll be interested to see how FA and pre-draft visits change or confirm the perspective on the Chiefs' draft board.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.