The 2011 NFL Draft is already filled with a drama and excitement all its own. Yet the Kansas City Chiefs found themselves caught in the middle during the official non-trade between the Baltimore Ravens and the Chicago Bears near the end of the first round, adding even more tension to the event. That's something Haley recently broke down in an NFL Network interview with Rich Eisen.
The Chiefs had already traded down once to get to the No. 27 overall selection with the Cleveland Browns, who moved up to No. 21 to grab nose tackle Phil Taylor at the Chiefs original draft slot. The Ravens, picking at No. 26, had a trade they believed was already agreed to and submitted to the NFL to make it official with the Bears that would allow them to move down to No. 30. The only problem was that the Bears didn't officially submit due to a mix-up, detailed by Dan Pompei here.
Reflecting back on the event, Haley said the team was worried they'd lose their own guy in the process -- the same thing every team was thinking.
"That's what makes the draft so fun," he said. "There was some drama, some high drama. All we were worried about is that either one of those teams wasn't taking the guy that we wanted and being prepared in case that scenario occurred. So we kept asking our guys in New York, ' Did we get this pick in? Is anything else going to happen?' He says, 'No, this is your pick.' So we're holding Jonathan on the phone and kept handing it around, and he got to talk to everyone in the room by the time he was on our team."
In the end, everyone got their man. The Ravens scored the cornerback they were hoping to walk away with in Jimmy Smith. The Chiefs got their impact receiver to pair opposite Dwayne Bowe. The Bears got their massive tackle with Gabe Carimi. But it was the drama along the way that made it even more exciting.