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Grading the Chiefs’ pick of SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice at 55

What do we think of Kansas City’s second pick of the 2023 NFL Draft?

NFL Combine Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

The Kansas City Chiefs have made a selection in Round 2!

With the 55th overall pick in the second round, the Chiefs took SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice. We have insta-grades from three members of the Arrowhead Pride Draft Team.

Ron: I was a fan of the Chiefs taking wide receiver with their second pick of the 2023 NFL Draft — and I was a big fan of them moving up to secure the player they wanted to get.

But I was big on Tennessee wide receiver Cedric Tillman — who profiles as a similar receiver to Rice, but who may be a better prospect in the short term. Rice, however, has the superior athletic profile; he put up incredible numbers at the NFL Combine. So in the long term, he may have a higher ceiling; the Chiefs seem to be betting on that.

Either way, Kansas City needed a receiver capable of playing on the perimeter and winning through press coverage — while also being enough of an athlete to make a big play before (or after) the ball gets in his hands. Rice can be that guy. This completes the Chiefs’ receiving corps for 2023.

Grade: B

Caleb: I did not see this coming at all. I had Rice as my 11th wide receiver. There were players ahead of him still available. I don’t know that the Chiefs needed to trade up eight spots to grab him.

Rice, however, does have a ton of athletic upside. He has the ability to make contested catches downfield and get yards-after-catch. Despite this, he must continue to work and grow through the inconsistencies in his game — which will start with consistently catching the football and limiting turnovers.

Grade: C+

Nate: Rashee Rice was at the top of my Round 3 wide receivers. Even though he plays undersized, he brings more contested-catch ability to the Chiefs than they’ve had in years. He will need to expand his route tree in order to maximize his abilities, but he has the potential to be a three-level winner. If you want a game to watch, watch him in the Maryland game.

Grade: B

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