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Handing out draft grades for the Chiefs’ class of 2023

What does our staff think of Kansas City’s latest draft class?

NFL: NFL Draft Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

As the 2023 NFL Draft comes to a close, our draft staff provides their grades for the Kansas City Chiefs.

Price Carter (@ArrowheadPrice): B-

Overall, I didn't love or hate any single pick that the Chiefs made. General manager Brett Veach did a nice job of navigating the draft board. He showed patience in the first round and with a trade-down on day three. They were also aggressive enough to get the players they wanted without giving up future draft capital. Like most drafts, it's going to come down to how the top three players produce. Felix Anudike-Uzomah is an excellent addition to the Chiefs' pass rush, which has improved after being second in the league in sacks in 2022. Wide receiver Rashee Rice and offensive lineman Wayna Morris both need to be impactful starters, especially considering the players that were selected after them that I had higher on my board.

Overall, I like the Day 3 swings the Chiefs made. BJ Thompson is fun and a totally different player than KC has had at EDGE. Keondre Coburn feels safe and has an immediate impact on the 2023 roster. I would have liked to see Veach add another pass catcher or weapon on Day 3, such as Keaton Mitchell, Hunter Lupke or Andre Iosivs. But Nic Jones screams Steve Spagnuolo corner and will be a special teams impact. The Chiefs raised the potential ceiling of all three phases of their roster.

Nate Christensen (@natech32): B+

Regarding overall value, it's hard not to give the Chiefs a high grade. They were able to finalize their defensive end rotation with Felix Anudike-Uzomah, add a new prototype at wide receiver in Rashee Rice and still bring in tackle competition with Wanya Morris. On Day 3, I like the swing of defensive end BJ Thompson as a potential replacement for Joshua Kaindoh, and nose tackle Keondre Coburn fills a massive need in the middle of the defense. Still, I leave this draft not feeling great about the wide receiver and defensive tackle rooms going into the season. I'd argue the Chiefs need more out of those positions to put themselves in the best position to win the AFC. However, there was no way the Chiefs could address all their needs with the limited picks they had, and I did feel they did do a nice job addressing some of their needs in the draft.

Ron Kopp Jr. (@Ron_Kopp): B+

The best thing about the Chiefs' 2023 draft class is how they chose to attack their positional needs. They hit on every position I believe needed to be addressed, even signing an undrafted running back Deneric Pierce, who could have easily been a draft pick. They went with the most important positions on Day 1 and 2, waiting on the lesser-valued positions on Day 3 with either a swing on athleticism or very good scheme fits at nose tackle and cornerback. I believe this class' impact will be felt more in the long term, but I was fully on board with general manager Brett Veach's general plan of attack.

Rocky Magaña (@rockymagana): B+

The Chiefs came into this draft with some very specific holes they needed to fill. If they walked away from the draft without nabbing at least one edge rusher, a stout nose tackle, a larger wide receiver to line up opposite of Travis Kelce in the same manner JuJu Smith-Schuster did last year and a tackle prospect who could push Lucas Niang for playing time at right tackle, then it would have been a failure.

But they didn't. Regardless of how you feel about the players they selected to fill those spots, the Chiefs hit on every one of their needs in the draft, plus, they also grabbed an interesting developmental guy in BJ Thompson. Felix Anudike-Uzomah is a relentless pass rusher whose best days are ahead of him. As a Kansas City native, I expect him to play his tail off for his childhood team and give them every drop of every ounce of effort he has in his body.

If you don't like this draft, I would advise withholding final judgment until we see how these guys look around Week 12 of the season, when the Chiefs are getting ready for their latest playoff push. I think we'll feel pretty good about this class by then.

Matt Stagner (@stagdsp): A-

Perhaps I'm feeling generous today, but I think there's a lot to love about this draft class. They hit on the big positions of need — in exactly the order I thought they should — with at least three of the players I hoped they would. The fit, story and upside of Felix Anudike-Uzomah make him the perfect first-round pick. He could have a Tamba Hali-like career in Kansas City. There are tons of similarities there, from the build, to the number, to the defenders putting him in a chokehold to try and stop him. We all wanted a wide receiver in Round 2, even if the Chiefs made sure we didn't predict that it would be Rashee Rice.

The biggest surprise was Chamarri Conner in round four, but he could be the next L'Jarius Sneed. I love the upside and unique skill set of BJ Thompson, finally adding some speed around the edge for this defense. The best pick of the weekend could be Keondre Coburn — taken about two rounds after we thought he'd go — with the ability to start Day 1. We could nitpick some of the choices, including the fact they didn't address running back, but even that was resolved immediately after the draft with the promising addition of Deneric Prince. Be patient with this class; it sure looks like they got a nice mix of immediate contributors and huge upside for the future.

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