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The most significant Chiefs draft needs in 2021

It’s a special bye week edition of the Arrowhead Pride Draft Show.

Kansas City Chiefs v Denver Broncos Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

On a special bye week edition of the Arrowhead Pride Draft Show, we answered a variety of questions you asked about the 2021 NFL Draft. This was a good one:

What are the Chiefs most significant positions of need in 2021?

Some needs could be met in free agency, but it’s not likely that happens with potential cap space restrictions. That leads us to address them in the draft.

Here are some positions the Chiefs could prioritize early in April 2021:

Interior offensive line

The three interior positions are all up for grabs in 2021. Some may point to the return of Laurent Duvernay-Tardif as a means to solidify the group, but he will be 18 months removed from football the next time he sees the field — and he wasn’t particularly good in 2019. Austin Reiter is a free agent, as is Daniel Kilgore. Center could be a logical addition early on in the draft.

Defensive end

The depth of the defensive end group is non-existent in 2021. Alex Okafor, Taco Charlton and Tanoh Kpassagnon are all free agents. The Chiefs need to bolster that group — especially considering the lack of a pass rush to this point in the season. It wouldn’t hurt to add an early pick to provide legitimate juice off the edge so Steve Spagnuolo doesn’t have to try so hard to manufacture pressure. The front four needs to be more consistent — adding early talent will help that.

Wide receiver

Sammy Watkins and Demarcus Robinson are free agents next season — the Chiefs will need to continue to stockpile weapons for Patrick Mahomes. This is a strong wide receiver class, and there should be talent throughout day one and two that makes sense in Andy Reid’s offense. They need to identify a direct replacement for Watkins — an “X” receiver who can beat press coverage and catch balls in traffic in the middle of the field.

Offensive tackle

Mitch Schwartz has missed several games this season and isn’t getting any younger. Eric Fisher will be entering the final year of his contract in 2021. Do not be surprised if the Chiefs take a tackle early in the draft this season. Lucas Niang was a top-100 selection for the team last year and is a promising prospect that should help the position. They still probably need another in the long term.

Luckily for the Chiefs, the wide receiver, tackle and defensive end groups all look very strong in this year’s draft. Chiefs general manager Brett Veach should be able to find quality talent in day one and two of the draft that could contribute sooner rather than later. It’s aligning well for the Chiefs.

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