NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 28: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell speaks at the podium during the 2011 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on April 28, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

2012 NFL Draft: Chiefs Most Likely To Select Brandon Weeden Of Any Quarterbacks, According To ESPN

2012 NFL mock drafts are rolling out and early on the Chiefs are projected to take an offensive lineman.

  • Live
151 Total Updates since December 24, 2011
  • Important 108
  • Updates 150
  • Articles 1
  • All Updates 151

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Chiefs Trade With Vikings To Land Ryan Tannehill At No. 3

In the latest mock over at Mocking the Draft from Brad Wells, the Kansas City Chiefs are making a Redskins-sized move to grab the No. 3 spot in the 2012 NFL Draft. The goal: Ryan Tannehill of Texas A&M for the quarterback position. It’s best to let Wells explain.

Wells writes, “The value for RG3 was three first rounders and a second rounder. With this pick, the Chiefs surrender their first this year, their second this year (44th overall), and their first next year. Yes, it’s a lot, but the Chiefs aren’t scheduling a private workout with Tannehill just to have him over for BBQ and brews. They think he’s good. Really good. The Chiefs need a true franchise quarterback now that Peyton Manning is in their division, and Tannehill might fit the bill (because Matt Cassell doesn’t).”

It’s that last line that simply will not work — that Tannehill “might” fit. You don’t trade up into the top three picks of a draft to grab a guy who “might” fit the bill. It’s hard to find anyone who doesn’t believe in Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III. Both players fit the mold of a franchise QB and both seem to have incredible potential to be successful for the next decade-plus in the NFL. Breaking the bank for those guys is understandable.

However, the flip side here is simply potential for some scouts. The Chiefs would have to hold an unequivocal belief in Tannehill across the board from their scouts, coaches and general manager if they were going to pay that price of two firsts and a second this year. It’s hard to find anyone who thinks that Tannehill is worth that. Could he turn out to be that good? Sure. But it’s just as easy to believe he’d be another reach for a team that was apparently desperate at quarterback.

The reality is that the Chiefs just don’t sound that desperate. They seem content to go with Matt Cassel under center with Brady Quinn as the backup and a much better roster around him than ever before. Trading up for Tannehill is the wrong value, lacks certainty and doesn’t fit the team mold at this point. It would be a total shock if something like this went down. Except to Brad Wells who could definitely say that he called it first.

For more on the Chiefs, head to Arrowhead Pride and for more updates on the upcoming NFL draft, check out Mocking the Draft.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Vontaze Burfict Could Entice Chiefs At Linebacker

ESPN’s Bill Williamson took a closer look at the volatile stock of Arizona State linebacker Vontaze Burfict and believes the Kansas City Chiefs are the best fit among AFC West teams. Given the team’s longing to bring in better competition all around and their ability to take the best player on the board, Burfict is the high-risk, high-reward pick the Chiefs could employ here.

Williamson writes, “This is an interesting fit. The Chiefs could use an inside linebacker for their 3-4 system. Burfict would benefit from playing for Romeo Crennel. The Chiefs gambled and scored with outside linebacker Justin Houston in the third round last year. They could do the same thing here. I’d say they would be the favorites in the division to draft Burfict.”

Burfict had 69 tackles and 5 sacks last season, but his ceiling is much, much higher than those numbers display. Opposing Views wrote recently, “With a solid defensive minded head coach and veteran linebackers honing his raw talent and gifted athleticism, his ceiling is immeasurable.”

Then again, Pro Football Talk recently summed up the miserable last year for Burfict: “Burfict managed only 16 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press[at his Pro Day]. With poor measurables and game tape, and suspect on- and off-the-field character, Burfict may struggle to be drafted at all in April.”

For more on the Chiefs, head to Arrowhead Pride and for more updates on the upcoming NFL draft, check out Mocking the Draft.

Continue

2012 NFL Draft: Chiefs Most Likely To Select Brandon Weeden Of Any Quarterbacks, According To ESPN

ESPN’s Bill Williamson took a look at the various rookie quarterbacks available and making the most noise heading into the 2012 NFL Draft in a recent column to see where the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs might land on particular players. When it plays out, as much as Chiefs fans might want to see a high profile name land in KC, Williamson believes that a second round grab familiar to Big 12 fans might be the most likely.


Introducing the SB Nation YouTube Channel | Subscribe Now | Follow @SBNStudios


When WIlliamson gets to Oklahoma State’s Branden Weeden, this is where he makes his strongest statement. He writes, “I think this is where we start to look for legitimate pairings for either Denver or Kansas City. If Weeden gets to the second round, I can see Kansas City grabbing him. If he gets to Denver’s spot in the second round, I think he will be a favorite to be taken there. Weeden might not have a long NFL career, but it could be productive.”

That’s an interesting take, but the Chiefs have other holes to fill so early in the second round. If the team is also enamored with other mid-round quarterbacks (like Kirk Cousins even one round later), that second round choice would be a spot better served by a guard or defensive tackle (assuming they grab an OT in the first).

Weeden does make sense, however, if the Chiefs make it through free agency without the quarterback they predicted earlier this offseason. The upcoming FA period will say a lot about where the Chiefs will go.

Continue

Washington Redskins Reportedly Ready To Pay The Piper For Robert Griffin III In 2012 NFL Draft

The St. Louis Rams have already made it known that they are going to dangle the No. 2 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft out there for the highest bidder. Now at least one team is reportedly ready to roll up their sleeves and get it done for Robert Griffin III. The Washington Post’s Mike Jones is reporting that the Redskins are prepared to pay the high price to grab the draft’s most dynamic athlete.


Introducing the SB Nation YouTube Channel | Subscribe Now | Follow @SBNStudios


Jones is reporting that the Skins are prepping to deal several draft picks to the Rams in the hopes of landing Griffin. It’s unknown at this time how other teams rumored to be interested in Griffin — like the Browns, Seahawks and Chiefs — will respond. Jones writes:

The Washington Redskins are prepared to part with two first-round draft picks, plus other selections in the early and middle rounds, to secure the St. Louis Rams’ No. 2 pick in April’s draft and land Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, according to people with knowledge of the situation.

The Rams are said to be seeking compensation similar to what the San Diego Chargers received from the New York Giants in exchange for Eli Manning in 2004. That year, the Chargers drafted Manning first overall. The Giants sent their fourth overall pick, the following year’s first-round pick, and their 2004 third- and fifth-round picks to San Diego for the quarterback who has since led New York to two Super Bowl victories.

If the Rams get that kind of a haul for Griffin, it will be very difficult to turn down. Jeff Fisher has to be salivating over landing several new players for his team, and this is the best way to restock a roster in need. As for the Skins, there’s no price too high for a franchise-changing quarterback, so if they believe enough then they should go for it.

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Jonathan Martin Will Help Keep Chiefs Healthy In 2012

Jamaal Charles. Eric Berry. Brandon Siler. Tony Moeaki. Each of those players were out for almost the entire 2011 NFL season for the Kansas City Chiefs, and you could almost say it was over before it even started. Except even in a season where head coach Todd Haley was fired, drama ensued from the front office and such injuries occurred -- that even took out starting quarterback Matt Cassel for half a season -- the Chiefs were one game away from the playoffs.

That's why in the latest mock from SB Nation's Ryan Van Bibber, he has the Chiefs selecting an offensive lineman to help bolster the depth and quality along the all-important front line. In selecting Jonathan Martin from Stanford, the Chiefs would definitely find a much improved o-line.

Van Bibber writes, "The Chiefs need to shore up their offensive line to keep Matt Cassel upright. The Chiefs were decimated by injuries across the board in 2011, and keeping players healthy is first and foremost in their plans if they want to get back into the playoffs."

The Chiefs have been mentioned with other possibilities, but offensive tackle is the most likely While it's not sexy, most KC fans would be quite happy if this was the selection on draft day.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Lamar Miller, David Wilson Behind Trent Richardson In Running Back Rankings

As the NFL Combine results come in and are analyzed by numerous people wondering how to interpret them for on-field results, it seems as if some level of consensus is coming in about the running backs of the 2012 NFL Draft class. Trent Richardson is still the top choice of all despite not working out. But two more who the Chiefs have been linked to in the second round have emerged: Lamar Miller of Miami and David Wilson of Virginia Tech.

John Clayton, however, says it's closer than what you might think, which means the Chiefs could find better draft value in later rounds perhaps with Isaiah Pead or Chris Polk.

He writes, "David Wilson of Virginia Tech (4.49 40) and Lamar Miller of Miami, FL (4.4 40) may have locked up the Nos. 2 and 3 running back spots, but their distance isn't much ahead of Isaiah Pead of Cincinnati (4.47), Chris Polk of Washington (4.57, although the NFL Network had him at 4.46) and LaMichael James of Oregon (4.45). Doug Martin of Boise State didn't hurt himself with a 4.55, with the NFL Network having him with one time of 4.47.

"It's not a bad group, but it might not be enough to convince many teams to use first-round picks on them. Richardson is the one star of the group."

NFL Draft Countdown has the same rankings with Wilson and then Miller coming after Richardson.

If the Chiefs want to find a value in the middle rounds to complement Jamaal Charles in the running game, they would likely find some impressive help. Wilson can be a three-down back in case of injury. Miller would certainly add another playmaker to the mix in a line-up that's going to undergo reshuffling from recent backs like Jackie Battle and Thomas Jones.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Dontari Poe Models His Game After Ndamukong Suh, Haloti Ngata

If you read the options for the Kansas City Chiefs at defensive tackle right now, the results will not look good. Kelly Gregg is a free agent again in a few days after signing just a one-year deal with the team last offseason. Anthony Toribio is available. Jerrell Powe was the developmental late round selection from the 2011 NFL Draft. Thus the Chiefs are going to need to do something at the position.

After Poe’s 44 reps of the Combine’s 225 pound bench press, Poe set himself apart from everyone else. Michael David Smith writes that his heroes are exactly who NFL teams are hoping he will become.

“Poe says the defensive tackles he models himself on are Casey Hampton, Ndamukong Suh and Haloti Ngata, and he said he thinks he can fit into any defensive line, in a 3-4 or a 4-3 front.”

The Chiefs could definitely use an anchor like that up front that will further free up pass rushers like Tamba Hali and Justin Houston.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Chiefs Select Jonathan Martin In First Post-Combine Mock

Pete Prisco of CBS Sports has come out with another mock for the 2012 NFL Draft after the NFL Combine and before the free agency period starts. Yet nothing has changed for the Chiefs even after a full week of looking at college prospects and hearing rumors about various positions.

Jonathan Martin is the selection out of Stanford for the Chiefs, filling some holes along the offensive line in the process. Prisco writes, “They’ve had problems on the right side of their line, and Martin could step in there, even though he was a left tackle in college.”

Martin is a common name linked to the Chiefs in the first round and he would shore up the line no matter how the Chiefs wanted to use him. Even if they moved Branden Albert inside and looked for more tackle help elsewhere, that would also strengthen the line with Ryan Lilja likely moving to back-up the interior positions. For a team that had little to no depth last year, that’s a major move either way.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Robert Griffin III's Price Likely Too Steep For Kansas City Chiefs

A connection was made. The Kansas City Chiefs were listed among the teams who sat down and spoke with Robert Griffin III at the 2012 NFL Combine. Head coach Romeo Crennel even publicly commented on how the two had a connection. It all led some to wonder just how much the Chiefs were actually thinking about doing what it took to get the Baylor quarterback. The price, after all, will be steep.


Related: 2012 NFL Mock Draft: Post-Combine Results

Perhaps it will be too steep. John Clayton says it is going to cost a pretty penny for the team who wants the rights to Griffin. Even teams with two first-round picks are going to have to pay more than that.

I’d handicap it as a two-team bidding war for Griffin. The Rams, who draft second, have to broker a strong deal and should be able to pull it off. The price of the trade would exceed the traditional draft value trade chart that was started by former Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson in the 1990s. The No. 2 pick in the first round has a value of 2,600. The No. 4 pick, currently owned by the Cleveland Browns, is 1,800. The Redskins’ No. 6 pick has a value of 1,600.

In order to put a trade together under those terms, the Browns would have to offer a draft value of 800, which equates to the 21st pick in the first round. The Redskins would have to offer 1,000, which would be an additional first-rounder and a third-rounder. For Griffin, it would probably cost the Browns at least the additional first and a significant draft choice in 2013, maybe a third or higher. The Redskins then would have to offer the equivalent of three first-round picks. The Dolphins and Seahawks might as well forget about bidding because the price for RG3 would be too high.

The Chiefs have already said they are bringing in competition for Matt Cassel this offseason, but the rumors swirling make it seem as if they would move on entirely. After all, whether they sign Peyton Manning or make a major trade for Robert Griffin III, that price would certainly place the quarterback in the driver’s seat over Cassel.

That said, the Chiefs are still likely to bring in a veteran like Kyle Orton or Jason Campbell before they grab a high-ticket item off of the shelf. That’s been the tone so far out of Arrowhead despite the rumors, and it’s better to believe what you don’t hear from Scott Pioli than what you do.

Continue

NFL Combine 2012: Cordy Glenn Could Shift To Right Tackle

The Kansas City Chiefs are likely to look for an offensive tackle in the upcoming NFL Draft at some point, but is it possible they will find their right tackle the same way they found their left: by taking a guard. Back when the Chiefs first drafted Branden Albert in the 2008 NFL Draft, they took the guard with the thought of converting him to left tackle. As Cordy Glenn of Georgia weighed in at the NFL Combine, the word is that he might be better suited as a right tackle. That mean the Chiefs could use the same method to fill both sides of their line.

John Clayton writes, "While there could be five or six offensive linemen taken in the first round, this isn't a great group. Cordy Glenn of Georgia helped himself by running a 5.15 40, but he's 6-foot-5 and 345 pounds, heavy enough to be more of a right tackle prospect. Mike Adams of Ohio State is intriguing at 6-foot-7 and 323 pounds, but he only pumped a 225-pound weight 19 times, which is considered weak for a top tackle. He has been a tackle since sixth grade, but he needs more strength. Wisconsin's Peter Konz, the best center in the draft, only bench-pressed 225 pounds 15 times. Still, all could go in the first round."

The Chiefs have been linked to Adams, but he also has his detractors and Clayton again notes his size that could become problematic. If Glenn could develop well as a tackle, the Chiefs have a new talented candidate to consider and that could make things interesting. Jonathan Martin, Adams and Riley Reiff are among those mentioned, but Glenn definitely has the talent to enter the discussion.

Continue

NFL Combine Results 2012: Robert Griffin III Runs Unofficial 4.38 40-Yard Dash

Everyone knows that Robert Griffin III has a unique set of tools, from his athleticism to his strong arm to his uncanny ability to make plays. It’s a skill set that brought the Baylor Bears football program to the mainstream this last season and it’s one that will likely earn him “Highest Player To Be Drafted After Andrew Luck” in the 2012 NFL Draft. But he might even have the Indianapolis Colts thinking twice after his results at the NFL Combine.

The unofficial word is that Griffin ran a 4.38 40-yard time at the NFL Combine this morning as quarterbacks begin to work out on another long day at Lucas Oil Stadium. That’s a level on par with some of the fastest to play the position. Michael Vick type of playmakers are rare indeed, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see the cost for moving into the St. Louis Rams drafting spot going skyhigh at this point. The Chiefs, who were checking in on Griffin yesterday, might have just found the price too high for their tastes.

Whether Griffin’s skills translate as well as we all hope remains to be seen, but for a draft short on great quarterback options, at the very least you have to admit that the two main ones available really do captivate.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Chiefs Grab Jonathan Martin In Latest From Don Banks

Jonathan Martin, Mike Adams or Riley Reiff. One of those three names are generally the ones that come up when discussing the first pick of the Kansas City Chiefs in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft. Mock experts have the Chiefs addressing the right tackle position that has been a weakness for some time, and so whoever is left over among the better tackles in the draft usually heads to the Chiefs.

Sports Illustrated’s Don Banks takes this path of least resistance in his latest mock. While he discusses other options, he lands on Martin for the Chiefs.

Banks writes, “The Chiefs have to upgrade at right offensive tackle, and Martin is the most obvious direction to head with both Kalil and Reiff already gone. An inside linebacker like Boston College’s Luke Kuechly or a defensive tackle like Memphis’ Dontari Poe would fill other areas of need with players who will wind up with grades in the top 15-20 range.”

Poe is likely to move up draft boards if he can have a solid combine, while Kuechly is likely to fall as more impressive physical specimens flex their wares in the Combine. That’s generally the way these things move between now and then, but what will not change is the Chiefs need for a tackle.

Continue

Peyton Manning Rumors: Chiefs Scott Pioli Refuses To Comment On Colts Quarterback

The Kansas City Chiefs are well aware of the consequences that come with tampering in the NFL, as they held the Detroit Lions to the fire in their own tampering case allegedly with Jarrad Page that earned the team a swap of fifth round choices as well as a seventh. Even though the Chiefs have been rumored to be checking in on Colts quarterback Peyton Manning, Chiefs GM Scott Pioli knows enough to avoid commenting on that situation in any way.

“There are rules in place and I’d never talk about a player on another team or even a player that’s projected to become a free agent that’s on another team,” Pioli said from the NFL Combine. “There are rules that prevent me from talking about those things, so I won’t comment on that now.”

Manning is expected to be released at some point in the next two weeks as Jim Irsay and the Colts brass figure out how they want to handle things. The Chiefs are among several teams reportedly interested if Manning hits the free agent market. Others include the Dolphins, Redskins, Cardinals and Seahawks.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Robert Griffin III Getting Checked Out By Chiefs At NFL Combine

When the Kansas City Chiefs said they were going to bring in competition at some point this offseason to compete with Matt Cassel for the starting position heading into 2012, the immediate prediction was a veteran in the mold of a Kyle Orton or Jason Campbell. While that’s still likely to happen, it’s also quite interesting to hear the Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli admit that he’s checking in on Robert Griffin III while at the NFL Combine.

“You do your homework because you never know what’s going to happen with a player,” Pioli said. “We have the 11th pick, but you never know where you are going to be and you never know where he’s going to be. Right now there are 10 teams ahead of us throwing out all kinds of smoke signals as to what they’re going to do. You never know. You never know.”

Pioli is right in doing his homework and being prepared for all scenarios, but it’s difficult to get the GM to comment on much of anything. The fact that he revealed that he’s open to moving around in the draft if he likes a player enough or if the situation is right gives hope that the Chiefs might think a bit more radically than some believe when it comes to the NFL Draft.

There’s no way of knowing and other teams like the Browns are much more likely to trade up. But the opening is there for the Chiefs to potentially make a move of their onw.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Luke Kuechly Teams With Tamba Hali And Derrick Johnson For Chiefs Linebackers

With the final draft order set, Ryan Van Bibber from SB Nation has his latest mock out for the 2012 NFL Draft and he has the Kansas City Chiefs taking the best value on the board regardless of need as the team grabs Luke Kuechly from Boston College at No. 11. While offensive tackle is likely the better play here, the Chiefs could use another inside linebacker and Kuechly is a top talent.

Van Bibber writes, “A lot of mock drafts have the Chiefs going after an offensive tackle at No. 11, but Kuechly is by far this year’s best inside linebacker. The Chiefs were close to breaking the top 10 in total defense in 2011, and the addition of Kuechly next to Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson could get them over that hump.”

Hali, Johnson, Kuechly and Justin Houston could form the core of the best group of linebackers in the NFL. Johnson and Hali are already Pro Bowl talents. Houston came on strong at the end of last season and could approach double digit sack totals this season Kuechly would definitely enjoy a chance to make plays outside of being double teamed.

Still the Chiefs have bigger fish to fry (read: OT) and making this selection would be a luxury pick. Perhaps next season, but for now the roster still needs work elsewhere.

Continue

NFL Rumors: Robert Griffin III To Browns, Peyton Manning To Chiefs, Saints And Drew Brees Discuss Deal

As the NFL offseason gets under way with this week’s NFL Combine in Indianapolis, the rumors mill is churning up as the talking heads arrive at their computers and begin to dish on the NFL news and notes. For the sake of not wanting any of you to be left out, here’s the latest buzz of note from the NFL.

*The Cleveland Browns’ Pat Shurmur basically admitted that the team was ready to move its two picks for the second overall choice from the St. Louis Rams if they like Robert Griffin III enough. They’re interviewing him at the draft and Shurmur said they’re ready to do what they need to get the players they like.

“We’re open to anything,” said Shurmur when asked specifically about a possible trade with the Rams. “I think that’s the important thing. We’re excited about the fact we can do nothing and pick nine really good players. That’s the starting point. Let’s set it up and fall in love with nine players and pick them, or we have the flexibility to do whatever we want.”

*Bob Fescoe, a local KC area radio host, said the Kansas City Chiefs were discussing Peyton Manning of the Indianapolis Colts with his agent Tom Condon. No moves have been made yet to even free Manning and this would definitely be a case of tampering if it were true. John Clayton of ESPN insists, however, that the Dolphins and Redskins are the favorites if Manning is released.

*In the “no joke” department, the Saints and Drew Brees are finally making progress on a new contract for the team’s star quarterback. Few believe that Brees could really leave the Big Easy but recent developments brought some bad blood into the mix. However, signs are now positive and moving forward.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Jonathan Martin Goes To Chiefs Over Trent Richardson, David DeCastro

The Kansas City Chiefs are going to have a few impact players to choose from in the 2012 NFL Draft, which is likely why mock experts have a difficult time nailing down who they have the Chiefs taking. They could use a right tackle, so most have them grabbing someone from the rotation of Stanford’s Jonathan Martin, Ohio State’s Mike Adams and Iowa’s Riley Reiff. But others can be considered, including the best RB in the draft in Trent Richardson or the best interior lineman in David DeCastro.

Walter Cherepinsky has the Chiefs taking Martin in his latest mock, but brings up the other two as possibilities. He writes, “Right tackle Barry Richardson is a sieve in pass protection. Jared Gaither was foolishly waived (typical dumb Todd Haley move), so Kansas City will be looking for an upgrade at the position. This is an easy pick because Jonathan Martin is the top player available who fills a big need. I had Trent Richardson here in my previous update, but he’s long gone.”

The Chiefs have now cemented the No. 11 pick in the draft, so they’ll be ahead of the Seahawks who also have needs at similar positions.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Scott Pioli Says Winning Coin Flip For No. 11 Spot Makes 'Huge Difference'

If you listen to Scott Pioli, the difference between the No. 11 selection and that of No. 12 is a vast chasm. As the Chiefs won the coin flip today to determine whether they would have the earlier choice over the Seattle Seahawks or not, Pioli described this morning’s flip to finalize the order for the 2012 NFL Draft as a major difference for the Chiefs.

“It kind of went straight up and it didn’t start flipping until it hit the ground,” Pioli described. "It’s a huge difference because in that one spot in the draft you don’t know who the other team is going to pick. It’s just an earlier opportunity for you to get what you want in the draft.”

“Not only is a better opportunity for you to get what you want, but if there is an opportunity to make a trade you are one spot higher and the value of that pick is going to be that much greater,” Pioli continued.

Pioli is right because at the turn of the top ten, there is usually one key player who begins to fall out of the top players for one reason or another. It’s a key corner that some teams can trade into (see last season’s Jaguars/Redskins trade at No. 10). If a team wants a Ryan Tannehill or Trent Richardson and those guys have fallen a bit, they might pay KC a premium to grab them.

Then again, the Chiefs might want to keep that pick and get an impact player like a Riley Reiff or Michael Brockers ahead of the Seahawks, who might be after the same position. Every spot counts in the first round and Pioli felt a bit of relief based on the coin flip this morning.

Continue

2012 NFL Draft Order Officially Set After Chiefs, Dolphins Win Coin Flips

The Miami Dolphins and Carolina Panthers were locked in a battle for the No. 8 and 9 picks in the upcoming NFL Draft. The same could be said for the Kansas City Chiefs and Seattle Seahawks for the No. 11 and 12 picks. Now everything has finally been settled with the official coin flip of the NFL early this morning (6am local time).

The Chiefs and Dolphins walk away the victors and now hold a higher slot over the others in their hopes to land impact players in the upcoming draft. You can find the official draft order below:

The official NFL Draft Order:
1. Indianapolis Colts
2. St. Louis Rams
3. Minnesota Vikings
4. Cleveland Browns
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
6. Washington Redskins
7. Jacksonville Jaguars
8. Miami Dolphins
9. Carolina Panthers
10. Buffalo Bills
11. Kansas City Chiefs
12. Seattle Seahawks
13. Arizona Cardinals
14. Dallas Cowboys
15. Philadelphia Eagles
16. New York Jets
17. Cincinnati Bengals (via Oakland Raiders)
18. San Diego Chargers
19. Chicago Bears
20. Tennessee Titans
21. Cincinnati Bengals
22. Cleveland Browns (via Atlanta Falcons)
23. Detroit Lions
24. Pittsburgh Steelers
25. Denver Broncos
26. Houston Texans
27. New England Patriots (via New Orleans Saints)
28. Green Bay Packers
29. Baltimore Ravens
30. San Francisco 49ers
31. New England Patriots
32. New York Giants

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Brandon Weeden Becomes Chiefs Quarterback Competition For Matt Cassel

The Kansas City Chiefs said early in the NFL offseason that the team was going to bring in some type of competition for Matt Cassel heading into the 2012 season. Most believed it would be another NFL veteran who could battle in camp after the way Kyle Orton handled the team in the huddle in his three-game tryout. If not Orton, then another veteran would do.

But what if the answer comes in the NFL Draft. The latest mock draft from Drafttek has the Chiefs selecting Brandon Weeden in the second round from Oklahoma State. His stock has been rising after a solid performance at the Senior Bowl. Concerns about his age aside, most NFL teams just need a solid starter no matter what how old they are.

New HC Romeo Crennel states there will be QB competition for incumbent Matt Cassel and GM Scott Pioli seconded the motion . . . but is that competition going to be Kyle Orton? There is a lot to like in Weeden. He finished the season third in the league in passing yardage, throwing for 4,277 yards with a nice 34/13 TD/INT ratio. He has a strong arm, displays accuracy on all NFL type routes, has enough mobility to be effective, and is a leader on the field.

Oh yes, then there is the fact that he is 28 years old. There is a lot to work with here. If Weeden cleans up his footwork and adapts to playing under center, he could be very effective. With this pick, the Chiefs would be looking for him to start no later than year two. His ceiling is high, but his window is short. With quarterbacks playing until their late 30’s, he could have a nice 8-10 year career.

The team also has Ricky Stanzi in the fold, but apparently they view him as a more developmental type of quarterback, although it will be an interesting subplot to watch what Brian Daboll thinks of the Iowa product. Either way, expect a third party to enter and it might come through the draft rather than free agency.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Mike Adams Lands Along Kansas City Chiefs Offensive Line

Another mock draft, another offensive lineman for the Kansas City Chiefs. The latest weekly mock draft report from Drafttek has the Chiefs selecting Ohio State’s Mike Adams at the No. 12 spot in the draft after the Seahawks grab Courtney Upshaw, a much more interesting grab, as the Chiefs try to fill the hole in the offensive line on the side.

Barry Richardson held down the spot last year, but he’s a free agent and he was already the weakest link on a line that could already use improving. The Drafttek report reads:

The sim has been bouncing among tackles Reiff, Martin and Mike Adams. Recently, it seems to be settling on Mike Adams. Offensive tackle is the most likely pick for the Chiefs in round one. The Chiefs need two new players on the offensive line. Barry Richardson is a poor starting tackle and Ryan Lilja is too light to handle large defensive tackles. At 6’ 8" 320 lbs, Adams has the frame to play either tackle position in the NFL. His footwork is very good, though he can get lost in space when zone blocking. He showed very well at the Senior Bowl and appears to have overcome his off the field issues at Ohio State. He has prototypical size and strength for a NFL caliber left tackle.

As a rookie, he would probably displace Barry Richardson at right tackle. With good development, he could challenge Branden Albert for the left tackle job, moving Albert to left guard. With this move, the Chiefs add another high quality offensive lineman to go with Branden Albert, Rodney Hudson and Jon Asamoah.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Trent Richardson's Stock Could Fall With Surgery News And Limited NFL Combine

Some mocks for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft have the Kansas City Chiefs selecting Trent Richardson as the top running back available. The thought process usually follows the thread that he’ll be the top value on the board with some people comparing the Alabama star to Adrian Peterson of the Vikings. Given the Chiefs need in the backfield for someone to pair with Jamaal Charles, coming off of an ACL injury, the pick could make sense.

Except most people actually have Richardson going in the top five or six choices in the draft because he’s so heralded. While a few have him falling to No. 11 or 12, the common response is a higher draft stock. But with the news dropping in the last 24 hours about a surgical procedure for Richardson that will limit his involvement at the NFL Combine, he might be on the board for the Chiefs after all.

Mike Florio writes, “Every year, an injury surprise pops up in connection with the Scouting Combine. This year, the first surprise comes from Alabama running back Trent Richardson. According to Jason La Canfora of NFL Network, Richardson suffered a knee injury in practice preceding the BCS national championship game last month. As a result, he had “minor” arthroscopic surgery on the knee, and Richardson will not participate in on-field drills in Indy.”

Then it might be the kind of setback that Dre Kirkpatrick had after an arrest for possession of marijuana and the charges were later dropped. Now Kirkpatrick is still celebrated and most believe the charges will not affect his stock. It’s a hiccup on a resume and anyone can find something on anyone else if they look hard enough. If Richardson displays the same skills at Alabama’s Pro Day, he will likely go where he was going to all along.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Jonathan Martin To Kansas City Chiefs In First Round

Don Banks has released his latest mock draft over at Sports Illustrated before the 2012 NFL Combine and it’s another prediction for the Kansas City Chiefs to take an offensive tackle in the 2012 NFL Draft’s first round. The Chiefs pick at No. 11 or 12 and Jonathan Martin of Stanford is the pick in Banks’ latest. He writes:

The Chiefs have to upgrade at right offensive tackle, and Martin is the most obvious direction to head with both Kalil and Reiff already gone. An inside linebacker like Boston College’s Luke Kuechly or a defensive tackle like Memphis’ Dontari Poe would fill other areas of need with players who will wind up with grades in the top 15-20 range.

Any of those options makes sense and at this point it’s like ringing a familiar bell with the amount of mock drafts that have the Chiefs going offensive tackle. It’s the ideal need and value mix for the Chiefs that it’s almost impossible to consider anything else. The drop off from the top tackles in the draft to the second tier is too much compared to other positions for Pioli to anything different.

Continue

NFL Combine 2012: Dontari Poe Set To Impress Teams With Need At Defensive Tackle

The defensive interior largely hinges on the ability of a defensive tackle to plug the middle and create mismatches that free up playmakers for the pass rush. But many defenses lack the playmaker in the middle like the Ravens enjoy with Haloti Ngata, for example. Dontari Poe has the build and strength to possibly become another option in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft for those teams that need one, and it’s likely that scouts and execs will take notice at the upcoming NFL Combine.

The Memphis star already has the attention of everyone in mock drafts as Poe is always somewhere on the board in the first round. The question is how high the DT will go. Wes Bunting says he’s likely going to impress everyone this week in Indianapolis.

“To be blunt, Poe is simply a freak of nature,” writes Bunting. “He’s a massive man who carries his weight extremely well. He also showcases natural fluidity, coordination and power, and should be able to “wow” in just about every phase of his workout. You don’t see linemen often with his size and overall athleticism, and ultimately I think this workout is what really starts to get his buzz going as we approach April.”

The Chiefs are likely going to take a close look at him simply because they have so few options at the position right now. Jerrell Powe is the only player of note and he’s a developmental sixth round choice from last season. The Chiefs likely need at least two new bodies there heading into 2012 and Poe would be an impressive one to add.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Chiefs Greatest Needs Listed As Guard And Center

Gary Horton of Scouts, Inc. has come out with his complete list of every AFC team's greatest needs as the NFL offseason gets set to unfold, and the Kansas City Chiefs come in with needs as you might expect along the offensive line. However, for Horton, he believes the Chiefs' greatest needs lie in the interior and not at right tackle as you might assume. While he has Barry Richardson's spot at RT listed at No. 2, Horton says the first issue for the Chiefs this year is the age and lack of performance in the middle.

Horton writes, "There is too much age and mediocre production on the interior of this offensive line. Center Casey Wiegmann and guard Ryan Lilja seemed to wear down late in the season, and there needs to be a talent upgrade here along with more youth in this run-oriented offense."

Rodney Hudson should be slated to take over at some position depending on what the Chiefs do, and if they can find a right tackle somewhere else, they could even take David DeCastro early in the draft and bolster the inside with the best player available. Then again, this is a very deep draft for interior offensive linemen, so the Chiefs could strike gold in the middle rounds and still get a starting quality player.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Dwayne Allen Would Fix Tight End Position For Kansas City Chifes

There's no way the Kansas City Chiefs are going to grab a first round tight end unless they are able to trade back from their spot at No. 11 or 12 overall (pending coin flip on Friday). However as important as that spot is for the Chiefs and their hopes for tight end Tony Moeaki, the team might want to look into such a move if it nets them a top notch option like Clemson's Dwayne Allen and some other draft choices.

Charlie Campbell says that Allen is the best overall tight end and that he would fit a number of teams, the Chiefs included. The team definitely missed Moeaki, who was out all last season, as their offense stalled without Jamaal Charles and Moeaki as options for Matt Cassel. Campbell writes:

There are a plethora of teams that could be fits for Allen. With the effectiveness of double tight end sets, teams that already have a good tight end could consider Allen. Bills' tight end Scott Chandler is entering free agency, and Buffalo could use a receiving tight end even if it re-signs Chandler. The Chiefs had hopes for Tony Moeaki, but he's had a hard time staying healthy. Allen could fix the position for Kansas City. The Chargers are going to have to find a long-term replacement for Antonio Gates, and Allen would be a great heir apparent with the way he could fit San Diego's offense.

Ultimately, Campbell says Allen reminds him of Jermaine Gresham and says he can be an all-around playmaker for the team that gets him. He's unlikely to fall as deep in the second round as the Chiefs would need him to, but they can maneuver just as they did this year after trading down from the No. 21 spot to later in the first at No. 27 to grab Jon Baldwin.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Coby Fleener Skipping NFL Combine With Ankle Injury

Coby Fleener is among the top contenders for best tight end in this year’s class for the 2012 NFL Draft, although Dwayne Allen of Clemson is likely the best candidate. That said, plenty of teams will be searching for another tight end receiving threat given the success of the New England Patriots with Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkoswki. But since the Stanford product will not be available due to injury for this week’s NFL Combine, he might end up slipping a bit.

Rob Rang writes, "It sounds like Fleener is targeting Stanford’s March 23 Pro Day instead. Rang reports that Fleener suffered the injury during the Fiesta Bowl in January. Fleener has reportedly recovered “sufficiently” to train ahead of the draft, but has not fully prepared for Combine workouts. He will still travel to Indianapolis to go through interviews and medical testing."

The Chiefs are among teams who could take a look at Fleener given the health concerns around Tony Moeaki and his return from injury. Even if he’s fine, Moeaki has never been a model of health and stability, so the Chiefs could use another option. Plus if both are healthy, Brian Daboll could make things interesting in offensive formations with both players.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Vikings, Dophins And Chiefs Take Offensive Tackles Near Top Of Round One

A team is only as good as its quarterback in today’s NFL, but those quarterbacks must be taken care of or else a team finds itself starting a back-up or even a third-stringer. The Minnesota Vikings, Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs all rolled with at least two quarterbacks last season in significant playing time, so it stands to reason that all three will be very concerned about protecting the position. Enter the offensive tackles for the 2012 NFL Draft.

Ryan Van Bibber’s latest mock over at SB Nation
has the Vikings, Dolphins and Chiefs taking the first three offensive tackles off the board before the first half of the first round is even finished. That shows just how valuable the position is. After the Vikes take Matt Kalil and the Dolphins grab Riley Reiff of Iowa, the Chiefs turn to Jonathan Martin:

Martin is another prospect who could earn way more attention after this week. Attention or not, he is a talented prospect that would upgrade the Chiefs offensive line. An improved front five would also help the team bluff its way through one more year of Matt Cassel at quarterback.

He’s likely going to end up on the right side as Branden Albert has the left side pretty much locked down. That could change if the Chiefs also land another veteran tackle of starting caliber in free agency. At that point, Albert could move inside. Either way, upgrading Barry Richardson’s former spot at right tackle will work wonders for the Chiefs offense in 2012.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Carolina Panthers' Focus On Tackle Could Hurt Chiefs' Chances To Grab Reiff Or Martin

There are too many offensive tackle prospects available with strong enough grades to keep the Kansas City Chiefs from finding at least someone who could man the right side from day one of the 2012 season in the upcoming NFL Draft. That said, there are definitely better prospects than others and it’s the teams ahead of the Chiefs that make things difficult to project.

The Carolina Panthers are rumored to be looking at offensive tackles instead of defensive help from their position in the top 10 of the draft. That means that players like Riley Reiff and Jonathan Martin will be considered before the Chiefs can get them.

Charlie Campbell writes, “Left tackle Jordan Gross turns 32 this year, and Carolina has to start thinking of his long-term replacement. Jeff Otah has had a two-year knee injury and his long-term future is in question. The Panthers are optimistic that they won’t be picking in the top half of the draft over the next few years, and they know that landing a franchise left tackle is very difficult to do in the later half of the first round. As a result, Carolina will consider Iowa tackle Riley Reiff and Stanford tackle Jonathan Martin.”

Those are the two primary players the Chiefs are likely looking at since Matt Kalil will be long gone. Even if both are gone by the No. 11 or 12 selection (coin flip pending), Mike Adams is still there, although his project status will likely make him the third option. While the Chiefs will eventually get their man, here’s hoping they have several choices in front of them.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Chiefs Could Groom Ryan Tannehill Behind Matt Cassel

The latest mock draft by Charlie Campbell looking forward to the 2012 NFL Draft and what the Kansas City Chiefs will do features an interesting look forward into the future rather than addressing some of the current needs on the roster.

With the selection of Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill in the first round, Campbell says the Chiefs can find their heir apparent to Matt Cassel — creating competition in the short term and vision for the long-term. Campbell writes:

Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel will turn 30 just after the 2012 NFL Draft. They could groom Tannehill for a year or two behind Cassel.

The 6-foot-4, 222-pound Tannehill is a good athlete who can make big plays with his feet and has a strong arm. This season, he completed 62 percent of his passes for 3,744 yards with 29 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. The senior also rushed for 355 yards with four touchdowns. Tannehill was inconsistent and is still developing at the position. He played well versus Baylor and Missouri, but struggled against Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas.

Tannehill has only played one full season at quarterback (20 total starts at QB), so he will need time to develop at the pro level. As a wide out in 2008, Tannehill caught 55 passes for 844 yards and five touchdowns. He switched to quarterback in 2010 and played well in the last half of the season as the Aggies’ starter. Tannehill completed 65 percent of his passes for 1,638 yards with 13 touchdowns and six interceptions.

While it’s nice to think about the Chiefs having a better back-up quarterback situation than last season (when they started Tyler Palko four times), it’s difficult to imagine the Chiefs ignoring offensive tackle, defensive tackle, cornerback or linebacker for the sake of security at quarterback.

Scott Pioli seemed quite fine discussing bringing in a veteran like Kyle Orton or Jason Campbell to compete, so Tannehill is likely a stretch in need and value for the Chiefs.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Chiefs Could Select Between Mike Adams, Jonathan Martin As Tackle Options

In Drafttek’s latest six round mock (out every Wednesday leading up to the 2012 NFL Draft), they have Michael Floyd breaking into the top ten, which means another offensive tackle falls to the Kansas City Chiefs in the first round. That’s good news for a team that could use options there and it’s possible they will have their choice of Stanford’s Jonathan Martin or Ohio State’s Mike Adams.

Given the state of the Chiefs right side of the offensive line, that’s a good choice to have in front of them. Adams likely has the higher ceiling. Martin is the ideal guy to step in right away. However, Drafttek has the Chiefs going with Adams instead and has Martin going immediately following to the Arizona Cardinals. As for the Chiefs pick:

Will Brian Daboll stick with a zone blocking scheme or go to an MBS? Either way, Mike Adams could be the pick The sim has been bouncing among tackles Rieff, Martin and Mike Adams with good reason. Along with quarterback, offensive tackle is one of the biggest need areas on the Chiefs. At 6’ 8" 320 lbs, Adams has the frame to play either tackle position in the NFL. His footwork is very good, though he can get lost in space when zone blocking. He showed very well at the Senior Bowl and appears to have overcome his off the field issues at Ohio State to overtake Jonathan Martin as an OT prospect. He has prototypical size and strength for a NFL caliber left tackle. As a rookie, he would probably displace Barry Richardson at right tackle. With good development, he could challenge Branden Albert for the left tackle job, moving Albert to left guard. With this move, the Chiefs add another high quality offensive lineman to go with Branden Albert, Rodney Hudson and Jon Asamoah.

The Chiefs have to shore up this area more than any other in the first round of the draft simply because the FA selection of tackles will not help the team. The draft is the one outlet the Chiefs have to solve the right side of the line so this scenario is the ideal one for KC.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Kansas State's Bryce Brown Could Be 'Late Round Steal'

Every NFL team hopes that its late round choices made up of players most football fans will have never heard of will turn out to be the next great find in the 2012 NFL Draft. They'll take fliers on players with various issues -- injury histories, character concerns, lack of playing time, a poor work ethic -- all in the hope of turning that player around. Bryce Brown is one such player who might raise red flags for teams but whose talent could shine through at the next level.

The Kansas State running back recently received some attention from Steve Muench, even though he's played sparingly over the last couple of seasons. Character concerns and bouts of depression will make most teams cautious, but it's hard to ignore his natural on-field ability. Muench says he could make a great boom or bust prospect:

Brown has carried the ball just three times since 2009 and could very well go undrafted. The way he left Tennessee in the spring of 2010 also raises concerns about his character. However, don't be surprised to see a team take a chance on this boom-or-bust prospect late on Day 3.

Brown showed NFL-quality vision, burst and power during his true freshman season in 2009. If he can regain that form he could prove to be a steal, and Baltimore is one possible landing spot. It would be a stunner if Ravens RB Ray Rice is allowed to leave via free agency, but the Ravens still need to add depth. They have the leadership in the locker room to get the most out of Brown, and his hard-nosed running style fits Baltimore's physical style of play.

Brown ran only three times last season for 16 yards.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Select Mike Adams In National Football Post's Latest Mock

Wes Bunting of the National Football Post has his latest mock draft before next week’s NFL Combine out and several new names have made their way into the first round. However, the Kansas City Chiefs are sticking with familiar territory for the for the 2012 NFL Draft with their selection of Mike Adams of Ohio State. The right tackle is the ideal fit and several mocks have made this same selection in the past.

Bunting writes, “You have to think after the struggles the Chiefs had at right tackle last season, drafting a guy like Adams who has the size and athleticism to handle powerful NFL pass rushers is a must for them this off-season.”

As for Adams’ talent, Bunting rates him as the second best tackle in this year’s class and his incredible size at 6-8, 320 should give defensive linemen fits. Bunting summarizes his opinion by saying, “He’s a talented kid with a big frame, long arms and natural movement skills. He can bend and if he can put it all together and continue to improve his footwork he could certainly mature into a starting caliber left tackle in the NFL.”

The reason this works so well for the Chiefs is that Barry Richardson has been a subpar right tackle over the last two seasons, and many draftniks believed the Chiefs would have addressed the position a year ago. Given the dearth of solid options in free agency, the Chiefs are bound to wait until the draft to select a tackle and the first round presents the best options compared to deeper positions available in the draft. Adams would shore up the right side for the Chiefs and improve all facets of the offense.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Dontari Poe Could Fill Middle With Kansas City Chiefs

As mock drafts continue to emerge before the NFL Combine for the 2012 NFL Draft, some momentum is gathering for the Kansas City Chiefs to possibly move toward a defensive lineman with their first choice. Michael Brockers of LSU is an option. Devon Still of Penn State is another. But Dontari Poe of Memphis has the size and strength the Chiefs could use to plug the middle. So says a couple of the latest mock drafts to come out.

Scott Wright over at NFL Countdown likes Poe to the Chiefs at No. 11 (which still has to be determined by a coin flip) and writes:

The Chiefs have a pretty nice core of young talent in place but the rebuilding job is far from complete. One spot that must still be upgraded is nose tackle, where 35-year-old Kelly Gregg was merely a stop-gap solution. Dontari Poe of Memphis isn’t a household name just yet but that will start to change in the coming months. In fact, Poe should ultimately compete to be the first defensive tackle off the board.

A 6-5 and 350 pound monster in the middle, Poe is not just big but also freakishly athletic, quick and agile. Poe is capable of playing defensive end in an odd front as well and that versatility will only add to his value. Chiefs GM Scott Pioli drafted Vince Wilfork during his tenure with the Patriots and Poe could play a similar role and have the same type of impact in Kansas City.

Another major concern is right tackle and Riley Reiff of Iowa would be the most logical option of all if available, although they could also grab Jonathan Martin of Stanford and move Branden Albert to the right side. The inside linebacker spot alongside Derrick Johnson could stand to be upgraded as well and Vontaze Burfict of Arizona St. would be an absolutely perfect fit in their scheme, although character issues will likely make it difficult to pull the trigger this early.

Russell Lande over at the Sporting News has the same choice to the Chiefs in his most recent draft. Lande writes, “Though Kansas City’s defense played well in 2011, it got by with Kelly Gregg, 35, as nose tackle. Poe is explosive and huge (estimated to be more than 350 pounds), with the combination of strength and athleticism that is difficult to find.”

The Chiefs could certainly use help along either line, so it’s not a great stretch to see the Chiefs going with Poe or Still if they are enamored enough with one on draft day.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Trent Richardson Selected By Kansas City Chiefs In Multiple Drafts

The Kansas City Chiefs have a bit of an uncertainty ahead of them no matter how well the rehabilitation of Jamaal Charles is going. After suffering an ACL injury in week two against the Detroit Lions, Charles was placed on Injured Reserve and was lost for the 2011 season. Now Charles says that his knee is doing great, but that’s impossible to fully know until game conditions how he will perform. And that creates enough questions at the position for some mock drafters to have the Kansas City Chiefs take Trent Richardson in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Even if Charles comes back okay, Richardson would provide a perfect counterpoint that would make the Chiefs running attack the best in the NFL. Charles is dynamic enough as it is, but when paired with an aging Thomas Jones, the two were enough to lead the league in rushing. Jones is likely gone in 2012 and the same could be said for Jackie Battle. With Dexter McCluster also in tow and the possibility of resigning Le’Ron McClain, the other positions could be set if the Chiefs draft Richardson.

Charlie Campbell writes that Richardson is the best value here. He writes, “The Chiefs have more dire needs, but the best player available is Richardson. Thomas Jones is at the end of his career, and Jamaal Charles is coming off a serious injury. Running backs slide in the draft, but Richardson is a special talent and is tough to pass on.”

Walter Football compares him to Adrian Peterson and writes, “Jamaal Charles will be back next year, but the Chiefs have never been convinced that he can carry the load. That’s even a more unreasonable expectation in 2012 given that he’s coming off a torn ACL. Trent Richardson is by far the top player available. He would give Kansas City the top one-two punch at running back in the NFL.”

Some will view it as a luxury pick and rightfully so, but Richardson also keeps the Chiefs set at running back for years to come no matter what injuries occur. If anything, a team desperate for Richardson might be in position to also trade up to the spot, since he is the best value there.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Alabama's Dre Kirkpatrick Will Be 'Excellent Corner In The NFL'

The Kansas City Chiefs have a major choice ahead of them with restricted free agent Brandon Carr. If they can sign him to a long-term deal, then the team can move on to other candidates for their first round choice, which will come at either No. 11 or 12 without a trade (and depending on the upcoming coin flip during the NFL Combine). If, however, they lose their starting corner to another team -- like his hometown Detroit Lions -- then the team has some work to do.

Part of that work to solve the corner dilemma could come at the expense of that first round choice in the 2012 NFL Draft. Dre Kirkpatrick is among the top corners available in the draft and while others like Morris Claiborne could go as high as No. 3 to the Minnesota Vikings, Kirkpatrick will likely slide to some degree because of character concerns (which includes a recent arrest on possession of marijuana, although charges were later dropped). Still, his talent should overwhelm any character issues.

Wes Bunting writes, "Overall, Kirkpatrick has all the physical tools to be an excellent corner in the NFL. Corners with his height and wingspan are rare and he should get drafted very high assuming he runs well at the combine. The main concern is that shortly after the season ended, he was arrested for marijuana possession ... Still it’s a red flag and cause for concern and his off-field activities need to be checked out."

The Chiefs might have greater needs to address with that choice (especially offensive tackle), but a high value corner like Kirkpatrick might shift things if they like what they see at the Combine and ensuing Pro Days. At the very least, the Chiefs have options to keep cornerback a position of strength.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Dontari Poe Goes No. 11 To The Kansas City Chiefs

Another day, another mock. So goes the NFL off-season where mock drafts looking forward to the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft are a dime a dozen, and yet we report on every one. No matter how many come out, it’s never old to try to guess what the Kansas City Chiefs, among others, might do to improve their team.

The Sporting News is the latest to release a 2012 mock
and Russ Lande has the Chiefs addressing a position of need with a player often found at the end of round one or even later. Dontari Poe of Memphis has an impressive size and might go high, but as players like Stephen Paea fell last year in the draft, that could happen as well.

Lande writes, “Though Kansas City’s defense played well in 2011, it got by with Kelly Gregg, 35, as nose tackle. Poe is explosive and huge (estimated to be more than 350 pounds), with the combination of strength and athleticism that is difficult to find.”

The Chiefs could certainly use Poe in the middle as it’s uncertain whether 35 year old Kelly Gregg will be back in the middle. Other than that, the Chiefs only have Jerrelle Powe, last year’s sixth rounder, and Anthony Toribio in the defensive interior. They could definitely use the upgrade.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Mike Adams, Justin Blackmon Among Players Labeled Overrated

As the 2012 NFL Draft comes into view, some semblance of a draft order will finally be set in terms of mock positioning and many of those players, according to Josh Norris, will be very overrated. Among those names he’s willing to name this year include wide receiver Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma State and Arizona State quarterback Brock Osewiler.

But one name he also mentions has been linked to the Kansas City Chiefs many times: Mike Adams. The big Ohio State lineman has been the Chiefs selection in the first round of many NFL Mock Drafts in recent weeks, and the team could definitely use help at offensive tackle. But Norris says buyer beware on that particular choice.

Norris writes, "Despite a massive frame and attractive athleticism, Adams had a maddeningly inconsistent Senior Bowl week that highlighted the same ups and downs he showed at Ohio State. Adams’ posture is high off the snap, and he allows far too many defenders’ quick inside moves to go untouched during his initial drop step.

“Even when Adams plants and anchors his lower body effectively, his upper half lacks power to redirect or finish blocks. His repeated offenses are worrisome, as is Adams’ medical history (shoulder surgery in ’08, knee surgery in ’09). I think his lack of quickness and reaction timing will limit him to right tackle, but Adams will probably be over-drafted to protect the blind side.”

Right tackle would be fine for the Chiefs since they already have the underrated and experience Branden Albert on the left side. Adams would still certainly shore up the right side if he’s selected. However, Norris might be right that there might be better candidates to warrant such a high selection.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Jonathan Martin Lands WIth Chiefs At No. 11 Overall

The Kansas City Chiefs are going offensive tackle in Dion Caputi’s latest mock of the 2012 NFL Draft and the name is a familiar one to draftniks. Jonathan Martin is the offensive tackle at Stanford rated near the top of the tackle rankings, and he’s often linked to the Chiefs along with Riley Reiff and Mike Adams of Iowa and Ohio State respectively. Clearly most people believe the Chiefs need help on the bookends of the offensive line.

Caputi writes, “Could be a prime spot for the Chiefs to trade down, but if they stand pat Jonathan Martin offers the best value. With the selection, Kansas City holds added flexibility up front and can move around Branden Albert, who’s currently plugged in at left tackle, if they’d like to.”

If Martin is chosen, it will likely be for the right side so that the team can leave Albert in place. To move Albert is to still have issues elsewhere and the guard position is deep in this draft, meaning the Chiefs can add depth in later rounds and even a possible substitute for Ryan Lilja if the cards are dealt well enough. It’s a good guess and one we could likely see in late April.

Continue

2012 NFL Draft: Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III Highlights Deep Quarterback Class

The 2012 NFL Draft will likely be known for two top quarterbacks at the very top in Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III. The first will be selected by the Indianapolis Colts, and the second will go to whichever team likely trades up to get him. But even after that, Wes Bunting says this quarterback class is among the deepest positions and it’s rich enough that a starter can be found in later rounds as well.

That’s good news for a team like the Kansas City Chiefs who have already come out in support of Matt Cassel as one of starting options while also saying they will bring in competition for him. That’s assuming that Ricky Stanzi is not that competition, which means it will come from outside. That could mean a veteran quarterback like Kyle Orton or Jason Campbell or it might mean drafting a player.

If the Chiefs opt for the latter, Bunting says there’s plenty to choose from in 2012. He writes, “Not only does the quarterback class feature a pair of potential blue-chip guys at the top end of the draft in Stanford’s Andrew Luck and Baylor’s Robert Griffin III. But there’s also a number of late first/second round wild cards who have the skill set to mature into potential starters as well, giving teams a number of opportunities to find their potential future franchise signal caller in the top-100 picks.”

His list of quarterbacks include Ryan Tannehill, Nick Foles, Brandon Weeden, Brock Osewiler and Kirk Cousins. Some of those names will slip into the first round like Ryan Tannehill and maybe even Weeden after a strong Senior Bowl showing. However, other names like Cousins have been mentioned for third round consideration. Simply put, it’s hard to tell where a guy like Osewiler will land in the draft at this point.

But the Chiefs have a fairly early choice in each round which means they might be able to grab a future starter at a later point than what you might believe. The surest bets will remain at the top, but Cincinnati found out last season about the benefits of waiting on Andy Dalton and striking elsewhere early in the draft. While others traded up for Gabbert and sank in the standings, Cincy went to the playoffs with a rookie under center.

With some impactful offensive weapons in place, the Chiefs might be able to do the same.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Should Consider Coby Fleener In Second Round

The Kansas City Chiefs definitely have their holes, so it’s reasonable to just expect the team to plug those holes as best as they can with the strongest possible value at each point they select a player in the 2012 NFL Draft. Offensive tackle should be first. Perhaps an inside linebacker in round two. A defensive tackle rounds out the list in round three and from there a running back, quarterback and so on. While it might not be a popular choice, however, a tight end like Coby Fleener from Stanford would actually provide an incredible value and fill a need in the second round.

Dwayne Allen is going to be the first tight end taken off of the board, so there’s no denying that Allen will likely be gone by the time the Chiefs select in the second round. The Clemson product has an incredibly well-rounded game and the top tight end is usually taken somewhere later in the first round (although last season, Kyle Rudolph was taken as the first tight end at No. 43, right around the position the Chiefs will choose in round two).

But Fleener should definitely be available at the Chiefs’ position and he would provide incredible value for a number of reasons:

1. Tony Moeaki has durability concerns. The Chiefs knew this much when they drafted him in the third round out of Iowa two seasons ago. Moeaki is a well-rounded talent who deserves to start and could truly put up incredible numbers for the Chiefs. He can block, has great hands and runs routes well. But he’s also coming off of a season-ending knee injury. Simply put, the drop from Moeaki to the next guy on the depth chart is major and the loss in the passing game is evident.

2. Matt Cassel needs a tight end. Dwayne Bowe is going to get his lion’s share of catches from Cassel, but it’s also clear that Cassel is better if he has an intermediate target he can look to since he’s not the big arm that will take a team over the top. Jon Baldwin was drafted to provide that, but Cassel’s not known for his big play ability. Instead, he’s an efficient quarterback who will rely on the tight end if he is there.

Unfortunately, the other options have included off-the-street Anthony Becht, Leonard Pope, who is best suited as a blocker, and Jake O’Connell, who continues to linger like the seventh round choice he started as. In other words, the pressure then moves to the wideouts and Cassel’s weaknesses become exposed without a go-to tight end.

Enter Fleener. The Stanford product caught 10 touchdowns last season from Andrew Luck and has great hands. At 6-6, 244 lbs, he’s a big target and yet he averages almost 20 yards per reception, showing how well he can stretch the field.

Wes Bunting at the National Football Post writes, “An impressive pass catcher who can win both down the field and underneath vs. man coverage. Has the frame and flexibility to develop into a solid blocker as well and looks like a future starting caliber NFL TE.”

If Moeaki goes out, a guy like Fleener can provide much-needed depth at a position that’s vital to the offense. Brian Daboll could provide some incredible match-up issues as well if the Chiefs lined up both Fleener and Moeaki in the same way that the Patriots have Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski.

As much as the dual tight end could be a luxury for many teams, it’s even more important for a team like the Chiefs if they choose to stick with Cassel under center. The durability concerns with Moeaki and the overall lack of depth make Fleener a choice that could pay off in multiple ways for the Chiefs and give Daboll even more playmakers to work with in the offense.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Bernard Pierce Provides Chiefs With Mid-Round Running Back

Bernard Pierce of Temple is hoping to raise his draft stock at the upcoming NFL Combine. The talented running back is capable of doing so, but Drafttek has his current level in the middle of the 2012 NFL Draft, which means a team like the Kansas City Chiefs will earn the payoff of such a talent falling so far. Paired with Jamaal Charles, it could be a dynamic duo for the Chiefs.

Pierce flies under the radar for many, but fans will love him once he signs with whichever team grabs him. He ran for over 1,400 yards this last season for Temple and rushed for 27 touchdowns in the process with a 5.4 yards/carry average.

Wes Bunting says that Pierce is suited for a No. 2 role with a team, which the Chiefs would provide that scenario. He writes, "Possesses good size, natural feel inside and some good cut back ability. Isn’t real powerful though and runs a bit upright. Doesn’t look like a great fit for an angle scheme at the next level like they ran at Temple. Is more of a zone guy in the NFL because of his vision and cut back ability. Could fight for a starting job over time, but might be better suited to play the number two role. "

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Mike Adams Listed As Chiefs First Round Pick Again

For a while it was Jonathan Martin making the rounds. Then it became Riley Reiff. Lately it has been Mike Adams. Either way, it's clear that most mock drafters for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft believe the Kansas City Chiefs need to take care of the offensive tackle position in the draft's first round. Given the sorry state of quality tackles via free agency, that's a good guess for a team that needs to replace Barry Richardson on the right side.

With the choice of Mike Adams in Drafttek's latest six round mock, the Chiefs would definitely take care of that bookend opposite Branden Albert:

QB is still a high priority for the Chiefs. However, there isn't a quarterback worth taking at this spot. The sim has been bouncing among tackles Rieff, Martin and Mike Adams with good reason. Along with quarterback, offensive tackle is one of the biggest need areas on the Chiefs. At 6' 8" 320 lbs, Adams has the frame to play either tackle position in the NFL. His footwork is very good, though he can get lost in space when zone blocking. Adams showed very well at the Senior Bowl and appears to have overcome his off the field issues at Ohio State to overtake Jonathan Martin as an OT prospect.

He has prototypical size and strength for a NFL caliber left tackle. As a rookie, he would probably displace Barry Richardson at right tackle. With good development, he could challenge Branden Albert for the left tackle job, moving Albert to left guard. With this move, the Chiefs add another high quality offensive lineman to go with Branden Albert, Rodney Hudson and Jon Asamoah.

I

t's' quite exciting to think of a Chiefs offensive front anchored by such size and youth.

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Brandon Weeden Becomes Perfect Match For Kansas City Chiefs In Round Two

Drafttek’s latest six round mock has the Kansas City Chiefs addressing offense with their first two choices and if the 2012 NFL Draft were to fall this way, Chiefs fans would likely be just fine with the results. Brandon Weeden is the Chiefs’ choice in the second round at No. 43 overall, and the Big 12 quarterback might be older than most NFL prospects but he will also provide another solid option at quarterback for the Chiefs to consider:

New HC Romeo Crennel states there will be QB competition for incumbent Matt Cassell and GM Scott Pioli seconded the motion . . . but is that competition going to be Kyle Orton? There is a lot to like in Weeden. He finished the season third in the league in passing yardage, throwing for 4,277 yards with a nice 34/13 TD/INT ratio. He has a strong arm, displays accuracy on all NFL type routes, has enough mobility to be effective, and is a leader on the field. Oh yes, then there is the fact that he is 28 years old.

There is a lot to work with here. If Weeden cleans up his footwork and adapts to playing under center, he could be very effective. With this pick, the Chiefs would be looking for him to start no later than year two. His ceiling is high, but his window is short. With quarterbacks playing until their late 30’s, he could have a nice 8-10 year career.

Placed alongside Ricky Stanzi and Matt Cassel, Weeden becomes an intriguing choice and one that bolsters confidence at the most important position on the Chiefs. If one of the quarterbacks can click with a number of good skill position players, the Chiefs could be dynamic on offense.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Justin Blackmon Falls While Michael Floyd Rises In Latest Drafttek Rankings

The greatest wide receiver in college football the last two seasons could help a number of teams in great need of a skill position player like himself, but Justin Blackmon finds himself falling past each one of those teams in Drafttek’s latest six-round mock. Instead, Blackmon falls to the Washington Redskins at No. 6 in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft in this mock:

The WR position in the NFL is growing. No, not in importance, as 2011 was the rise of the TE, but in physical size. In 2007 and 2008, 50% of 1,000 yard receivers were 6’0" or under. In 2009, that number was 43%. In 2010, it dropped again to 39%. In 2011, only 26% of 1,000 yard receivers were 6’0" or under. This trend makes sense, as the average height of a CB has dropped from 6’0" in the 90s to just over 5’10" in 2011. Justin Blackmon is one of the most consistent receivers I have seen coming out of college football. He has dominated almost every game for two straight seasons. He runs great routes, and his big body and wing span make him a fantastic target for any team. For a team like the Redskins, who only have one contributing receiver over 6’0", Blackmon could make a rookie-of-the-year-type impact. This would allow the Redskins to keep Moss in the slot in a Welker-type role and use Gaffney and Hankerson as a very solid #2 combination.

That’s an interesting spot for Blackmon considering that the St. Louis Rams, Minnesota Vikings and the Cleveland Browns who choose from No. 2 to 4 respectively all need an impact receiver. A.J. Green’s impact could be felt last year chosen at No. 4, so it would be surprising to see Blackmon make it past the same in this year’s draft.

However, Michael Floyd is rising up draft boards, providing another surprise at wideout. Drafttek has the Seattle Seahawks taking Floyd at No. 10 overall:

Usually-forthright Buddy Nix said last month that he wants 1 or 2 WR’s in free agency or the draft, mentioning 6’5", 235-lb Calvin Johnson as the prototype. That’s good news; Nix won’t be trading picks for 6’1" Justin Blackmon, or trading back into the first for 5’10" Kendall Wright. Michael Floyd isn’t Megatron, but he’s big and athletic enough to out-jump and out-muscle defenders in the red zone. I’d be disappointed if the Bills didn’t consider Alshon Jeffery before opting for Floyd, but the taller, heavier Jeffery had fewer TD’s and a lower reception average over the last 2 years, and in 2011 had a lower yards-per-game average with half of Floyd’s 100 receptions. Floyd was the more consistent receiver over the last 3 years in receptions per game with 6.3, 6.1, and 7.7 to Jeffery’s 3.5, 6.3, and 3.8. I sure hope Nix gets a pass rush in free agency and RD2 if this is his RD1 pick

That Floyd pick is good news for the Chiefs, where every pick that they do not need (such as another first round receiver) knocks another possible player to them at No. 11 or 12 (to be determined by a coin flip). If Floyd goes this high, that means another offensive tackle or defensive tackle slips further down the board to them.

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III Make Other Teams Reach For Quarterbacks

If the Kansas City Chiefs are going to acquire a quarterback in the 2012 NFL Draft to compete with Matt Cassel for the starting position (and possibly Ricky Stanzi depending on his development), the Chiefs are likely going to have to reach for that player. Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III are coming out as the top quarterbacks in every draft, obviously, but now Charlie Campbell has them coming out as the top two picks overall — meaning there’s no chance of anyone like the Chiefs trading up to get someone like that. The bottom line is that the Chiefs might have to reach for a guy like Ryan Tannehill to get someone in camp.

Of course, Campbell doesn’t have him going to the Chiefs. Instead, he has Trent Richardson. He writes, “Jamaal Charles will be back next year, but the Chiefs have never been convinced that he can carry the load. That’s even a more unreasonable expectation in 2012 given that he’s coming off a torn ACL. Trent Richardson is by far the top player available. He would give Kansas City the top one-two punch at running back in the NFL.”

Perhaps the second round could bring in a candidate — someone like Brandon Weeden or Kirk Cousins. But given the clamor over quarterbacks in last year’s draft at the top — from the Jags trade for Blaine Gabbert to the earlier than predicted selections of Jake Locker and Christian Ponder by the Titans and Vikings respectively — it’s clear that quarterbacks will go higher than anticipated now. Tannehill and even Weeden are good bets to rise before the draft and that means the Chiefs might have to stretch a bit to get their guy.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Luke Kuechly Could Create NFL's Best Linebacking Corps For Kansas City Chiefs

With his latest mock for the 2012 NFL Draft, Ryan McChrystal chooses a name for the Kansas City Chiefs that comes up often these days before the NFL Combine. Luke Kuechly is his choice over at Draft Ace, the scouting service he’s been running for most of the last decade. Kuechly might not be the right need to address, but he does have value, he argues, so that becomes the pick as Pioli will still stick to his board.

McChrystal writes, “A strong case could be made for an offensive lineman here (DeCastro, Martin or Adams) but Kuechly represents the best value at a position of need. The Chiefs can still find an adequate offensive lineman in free agency or in the 2nd round, but Kuechly is special and would be an enormous upgrade over Jovan Belcher at inside linebacker.”

If the Chiefs had such a dynamic foursome at linebacker, the results could be incredible. The Chiefs’ defense already kept them in many games last season and even helped them win against the likes of the Packers. Strengthening that unit could go far into making it one of the top defensive units in the NFL.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Riley Reiff Goes To Chiefs At No. 11 Overall

Charlie Campbell has his latest mock draft up for the 2012 NFL Draft coming up in April and the Kansas City Chiefs finally get their franchise tackle if the draft falls the way he sees it. After holding steady with Barry Richardson at right tackle the last two seasons, the Chiefs are rumored to finally upgrade the position this off-season and draft his replacement and Riley Reiff of Iowa would certainly do the trick. In fact, Reiff might force Branden Albert to find a new spot. Campbell writes:

The Chiefs would have a tough decision to make between Reiff and Trent Richardson, but they already have some quality running backs on the roster. There should be some good running backs available to Kansas City in the second round, but there won't be a left tackle close to Reiff's caliber.

Reiff was a solid left tackle for the Hawkeyes. At 6-foot-6, 300 pounds, he has the frame to add some more power. Reiff is a technician who was well-coached at Iowa. The junior looks like he has the ability to switch to right tackle, and possibly guard, if needed, but would have to put on some weight for either of those positions. Reiff's natural position is left tackle, and he should turn into a quality left tackle in the NFL.

Reiff had a very good game against Pittsburgh defensive end Brandon Lindsey. The rest of Reiff's schedule was very manageable. He had no issues with Michigan's defenders and played well against Nebraska. Reiff didn't allow a sack to Oklahoma's Frank Alexander in the Bowl game, but did surrender a sack to R.J. Washington on a bull rush.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Dre Kirkpatrick Has Misdemeanor Marijuana Charges Dropped

Liz Mullen of the Sports Business Journal is reporting that Dre Kirkpatrick’s misdemeanor marijuana charge has been dropped and now the Alabama star cornerback is free of any legal issues he was facing leading up to the NFL Draft. While that doesn’t clear him of any character concerns from teams leery of such things (as every team should be), it does however provide some relief to know there are no legal wranglings to worry about.

As for his talents, Kirkpatrick is among the top corners in the draft and every team could always use another one. For the Chiefs, they are going to contend with a corner most likely if Brandon Carr leaves via free agency, which is certainly a possibility despite the team recently saying that keeping Carr and Dwayne Bowe were the first priorities of the off-season. If the Chiefs lose Carr, then Kirkpatrick is a real possibility at No. 11 or 12 in the first round.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Mike Adams Rises To Kansas City Chiefs In First Round

Ohio State’s Mike Adams is likely going to enjoy a surge when it comes to his stock for the 2012 NFL Draft. His enormous frame at 6-8, 320 lbs. is very projectable at the NFL level and he’s got the talent to go with it. He’s still a rough project at times, but Adams simply has things you cannot teach. Given that the Chiefs offensive line has been an issue on the right side at tackle the last two seasons, it’s not surprising that the latest mock draft from SB Nation has the Chiefs going with Adams at No. 11.

Ryan Van Bibber writes, “At some point this team is going to have to find a quarterback. Maybe next year. For now, they need to replace Barry Richardson at right tackle. Adams has the most upside of any tackle beyond Kalil or Reiff, and he’s naturally suited to slide right in on the right side for the Chiefs.”

Wes Bunting of the National Football Post also loves his game and says, “He’s a talented kid with a big frame, long arms and natural movement skills. He can bend and if he can put it all together and continue to improve his footwork he could certainly mature into a starting caliber left tackle in the NFL.”

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Dontari Poe Rated Best Among 3-4 Defensive Tackles

When trying to predict the personnel a team will take in the 2012 NFL Draft, the scheme that team runs means everything. A 3-4 team like the Kansas City Chiefs will look at players differently than a 4-3, so a player like Michael Brockers or Devon Still might slide past the Chiefs even though they are rated higher. If the Chiefs, for example, are interested in a B.J. Raji type to sit at the point of attack, Dontari Poe should be their guy.

Charlie Campbell says that Poe is the best overall 3-4 DT in the draft in his latest defensive tackle ratings. While Poe comes a bit later on the list after Still and Brockers among others, he could be a good fit in the second round for a team like the Chiefs.

Poe totaled 33 tackles with eight tackles for a loss, one sack and one forced fumble this year. He did not play well against Mississippi State in the first game of the season and closed out the 2011 without a tackle for a loss in the last four games. Poe’s best game came against SMU when he registered a sack-fumble and three tackles.

Poe is a space eater who takes on multiple blocks. Even when his pad level is off, he is hard to move at the line of scrimmage. Poe should drop some weight to increase his agility so that he can make some plays that don’t go directly at him.

The Chiefs currently have Anthony Toribio and Jerrelle Powe as players to count on at the position and both have very little playing experience, if any. It’s clear the team will make upgrades there at some point — the only question is how soon they might address it in the draft.

Continue

NFL Draft Order 2012: Super Bowl Finalizes Order With Patriots, Giants At No. 31, 32

For those fans wondering when the final draft order will be determined, you’re in luck — at least at the bottom. While some pesky coin flips will not be determined until later this month at the NFL Combine, more of the order comes into focus with the end of official gameplay in the 2011 NFL Season. Thus the 2012 NFL Draft order is now set at the bottom with the playoff positioning finally over. With the loss to the Giants, the Patriots will have their choice at No. 31 with the Giants settling in at the bottom.

Here’s the current draft order:
1. Indianapolis Colts
2. St. Louis Rams
3. Minnesota Vikings
4. Cleveland Browns
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
6. Washington Redskins
7. Jacksonville Jaguars
8t. Carolina Panthers (determined by coin flip)
8t. Miami Dolphins
10. Buffalo Bills
11t. Kansas City Chiefs (determined by coin flip)
11t. Seattle Seahawks
13. Arizona Cardinals
14. Dallas Cowboys
15. Philadelphia Eagles
16. New York Jets
17. Cincinnati Bengals (from Oakland Raiders)
18. San Diego Chargers
19. Chicago Bears
20. Tennessee Titans
21. Cincinnati Bengals
22. Cleveland Browns (from Atlanta Falcons)
23. Detroit Lions
24. Pittsburgh Steelers
25. Denver Broncos
26. Houston Texans
27. New England Patriots (from New Orleans Saints)
28. Green Bay Packers
29. Baltimore Ravens
30. San Francisco 49ers
31. New England Patriots
32. New York Giants

Continue

Todd McShay's NFL Mock Draft As Offensive Tackles Going Higher Than Ever

It appears the offensive tackle is the hottest property at this stage leading up to the 2012 NFL Draft. That’s bad news for the Kansas City Chiefs is that they will choose at either the No. 11 or 12 spot in the first round, meaning the best players will be gone. Todd McShay of ESPN says that Riley Reiff, for example, is headed to the Minnesota Vikings at No. 3 in his latest mock. That’s a long way from falling to the Chiefs as he’s done in many mocks.

McShay writes, “The Vikings desperately need offensive weapons to help young QB Christian Ponder, but they also need to better protect their investment in Ponder. Reiff needs to get stronger, but he is an underrated athlete with the potential to become a very good starting left tackle in the NFL.”

Multiple teams need help against overwhelming young pass rushers like Jason Pierre Paul and Aldon Smith among others. The Chiefs will definitely need that in a division that features the Broncos’ significant pass rush of Elvis Dumervil and Von Miller. But they might have to reach for a player they do not want.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Todd McShay Has Chiefs Selecting Luke Kuechly At No. 12

Most Chiefs fans will want the team to plug its hole at right tackle via the NFL Draft’s first round if they can do so, but Luke Kuechly is a name linked quite often to the Chiefs in various mocks for the 2012 NFL Draft. Todd McShay is following suit in his second mock of the NFL off-season and says he’s a good fit for the Chiefs secondary needs.

McShay writes, “Bigger holes exist along the offensive line and at nose tackle, but Kuechly is clearly the best player on the board at this point. He would give new coach Romeo Crennel the kind of leadership and production Tedy Bruschi provided for the New England defenses Crennel coached in the early 2000s. Kuechly shows rare instincts and is a healthier version of current Cowboys standout Sean Lee.”

That last bit is what counts most. Sean Lee was very impressive as an instant impact player with high intelligence on the field for the Cowboys in his first two seasons. Last year he had 105 tackles with 4 interceptions. Such coverage skills would be great for the Chiefs in the middle.

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Luke Kuechly Once Again Placed With Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs have a merry-go-round of familiar characters that keep reappearing each time around if you follow the various mocks available for the 2012 NFL Draft. Luke Kuechly is one of the same names bandied about for the Chiefs' choice at either No. 11 or 12, pending coin flip. That's because the one glaring hole on the Chiefs defense, aside from defensive tackle, is inside linebacker. And Luke Kuechly's draft status fits that very slot. That's who Drafttek has the Chiefs taking in their latest mock.

Drafttek's profile writes, "Offensive tackle remains a high need for the Chiefs in this spot, but Jonathan Martin has been sliding into the lower reaches of Round 1. Where will the Chiefs go if they don't like the tackles left on the board? Luke Kuechly is the best player at a position of need. Jovan Belcher has held down the starting strong inside linebacker spot for the last two years; however, he has not developed as much as expected. He is strong against the run, but very weak in pass coverage, ranking 33rd out of 36 inside linebackers in that area. The Chiefs would prefer to field inside linebackers that are versatile, eschewing the usual strong and weak roles . . . Kuechly would fit the bill nicely. He is a tackling machine, relying more on brains and instinct than elite physical skills. He could be the last piece of what should be a top notch linebacker corps featuring All-Pro's Tamba Hali, Derrick Johnson and Justin Houston."

That last line is definitely true. Justin Houston really started to break out in the second half of last season, surprising a lot of fans and making a believer out of most. Tamba Hali benefitted from Houston's growth on the opposite side and had another tremendous season. Derrick Johnson had his best season to date and made the Pro Bowl. Clearly this will be an elite level unit if they can score a first round choice to add to the group.

Continue

2012 NFL Draft Order: Super Bowl Teams Only Ones Left To Figure Out

The first round is largely set for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft to be held in late April at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. A couple of coin flips to determine slots between teams and the final results of the Super Bowl are the only things standing in the way from completely knowing the first round order. However, this is what we know so far:

NFL Draft Order – First Round
1. Colts 2-14 .539
2. Rams 2-14 .590
3. Vikings 3-13 .559
4. Browns 4-12 .531
5. Buccaneers 4-12 .551
6. Redskins 5-11 .477
7. Jaguars 5-11 .500
*8/9. Panthers 6-10 .504
*8/9. Dolphins 6-10 .504
10. Bills 6-10 .520
*11/12. Chiefs 7-9 .512
*11/12. Seahawks 7-9 .512
13. Cardinals 8-8 .469
14. Cowboys 8-8 .473
15. Eagles 8-8 .488
16. Jets 8-8 .500
17. Raiders-x 8-8 .504
18. Chargers 8-8 .516
19. Bears 8-8 .527
20. Titans 9-7 .563
21. Bengals 9-7 .492
22. Falcons-y 10-6 .480
23. Lions 10-6 .535
24. Steelers 12-4 .492
25. Broncos 8-8 .520
26. Texans 10-6 .516
27. Saints-z 13-3 .508
28. Packers 15-1 .508
29. Ravens 12-4 .477
30. 49ers 13-3 .449

  • = Coin flip
Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: David DeCastro Once Again Falls To Chiefs At No. 12

Mocking the Draft has their post-Senior Bowl mock out for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft and there will be many more versions to come. But this one helps to cement a possible notion of the Kansas City Chiefs grabbing an offensive lineman, but one that does not supplant Barry Richardson as the starting right tackle — not unless they want Stanford guard David DeCastro to play outside for the first time.

DeCastro can, however, supplant Ryan Lilja at guard and give the Chiefs a tremendous, young, powerful duo on the interior. If this choice were to be combined with a great inside runner, the Chiefs backfield and running attack could be back to 2010 form with the return of Charles and the dynamics up front. That doesn’t negate the need for tackle elsewhere.

MTD writes, “This is not too early for a guard when there is one as good as DeCastro. The Chiefs have needs in a couple spots on their offensive line, and DeCastro is the best lineman available. Don’t be shocked if he got looks at right tackle. DeCastro is that good. Ohio State offensive tackle Mike Adams may also get some consideration.”

Adams makes sense to get rid of Richardson, but Adams has some questions of his own despite his size. DeCastro is the best value grab at this point.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Chiefs Linked To Linebacker James-Michael Johnson

Nevada's James-Michael Johnson is not going to be a name that many people are talking about leading up to the 2012 NFL Draft, at least at this point, Yet in Drafttek's latest mock draft, they have the Kansas City Chiefs taking the inside linebacker in the fourth round -- a decent guess at least position wise for the Chiefs to pick up someone to possibly supplant Jovan Belcher and provide competition along with free agent holdover Brandon Siler.

Coming into this season, NFL Draft Scout said, "The senior led the Wolf Pack in tackles last season in his first season at middle linebacker. He might be the most important defensive player for the Wolf Pack given the depth issues at linebacker. In addition to his tackles, Johnson had eight tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and forced three fumbles."

This year, Johnson had 100 tackles and 1.5 sacks to go with 1 forced fumble and 3 pass deflections. Wes Bunting has a strong opinion of him over at the National Football Post and writes that he's "a good athlete who can run, close on the football and play with power in the run game. Needs to play a bit lower in coverage, but overall does everything at a pretty solid NFL level. Is a guy who can win a starting job at the next level."

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: David Wilson Goes To Chiefs In Drafttek Third Round

In their latest six round mock draft, the guys over at Drafttek have the Kansas City Chiefs helping to bolster their offensive backfield with the addition of David Wilson in the third round. The Virginia Tech back has 4.4 speed and excellent acceleration and could be a feature back for several teams. Given the state of the Chiefs current backfield with the loss of Jamaal Charles and Jackie Battle to injury this season, they could definitely use some reserves.

Thomas Jones should not be expected back given his slip in production in recent years. Todd Haley was also the primary champion, at least vocally, for Jones' presence and it's time for the Chiefs to move on as Charles becomes the key veteran there. Remember, the Chiefs also drafted Larry Johnson when they already had a fine backfield and that worked out quite well.

Wes Bunting of the National Football Post particularly likes Wilson's game and calls him the second best back available. Bunting writes, "He's a compact kid who runs stronger/harder than you would expect from a guy his size. Has a dynamic quality to his game both inside and in the open field, and looks capable of maturing into a very good NFL running back early on in the NFL."

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: David DeCastro Headed To Chiefs At No. 11 In Wes Bunting's Latest

Wes Bunting of the National Football Post has released his latest mock for the 2012 NFL Draft, and the Kansas City Chiefs are left without any top tackles to choose from. Widely considered the biggest hole on the team, names like Riley Reiff and Jonathan Martin are already off the board by the time the Chiefs choose. That leaves bolstering the offensive interior becomes a priority with Bunting’s selection of Stanford guard David DeCastro as the Chiefs’ choice.

Bunting writes, “The Chiefs need to improve at a number of spots up front on their offensive line and DeCastro is by far the best prospect still on the board.”

That also leaves another popular choice like Boston College’s Luke Kuechly on the board, but the DeCastro selection makes a lot more sense than reaching for an ILB at this stage when the team already has talent there.

As for DeCastro’s fit, Ryan Lilja is in the second half of his career and might be better served as depth along the line for the Chiefs next season. Rodney Hudson backed up all three interior positions, but if Casey Wiegmann retires, then Hudson will be starting under center. The Chiefs also have Jon Asamoah at right guard, so adding another young strong starter like DeCastro bolsters the interior greatly.

That said the Chiefs will still need a top tackle in the draft since the free agency class is void of any real candidates the Chiefs would appreciate.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Brandon Weeden And Ryan Tannehill Vie For Third Best Quarterback In Class

The top of the 2012 NFL Draft will likely feature two quarterbacks among the top positions — perhaps even the top two — as teams position themselves to take Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III. Yet after those first few positions, other quarterback needy teams will still be in play for someone to help them out and Brandon Weeden of Oklahoma State and Ryan Tannehill of Texas A&M are hoping to be the next name called — perhaps even higher in the first round than what many might believe.

David Ubben writes, “Has Weeden taken over the No. 3 spot among QBs behind Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III? Ryan Tannehill was hurt this past week and couldn’t play, but this could be an interesting race. No doubt there’s disagreement among NFL teams on where to slot Weeden.”

Weeden is interesting given that he’s already 28-years-old, not exactly the age that most teams want to take a first-year quarterback to mold and grow into the position. Then again, if a guy can help a team, what does it matter in the end? After all, remember Kerry Collins came out of retirement this year to start the season for the Colts. Quarterbacks are needed everywhere.

Tannehill was injured at the wrong time and it’s possible that Weeden and even Nick Foles or Kirk Cousins could pass him. The positioning and placement, however, also shows just how much Landry Jones and Matt Barkley are missed after they announced they were headed back to Oklahoma and USC respectively. The QB class this year is down and there’s no denying that most front offices should lack confidence after Luck, because even Griffin comes with some question marks.

That said, that won’t stop a team from pulling the trigger on both Tannehill and Weeden at some point, and possibly both could go on the first day of the draft. The only question now is in what order will they fall?

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Trent Richardson Goes To Chiefs Once Again

Jamaal Charles was, at one point, arguably the best running back in the NFL -- or at least the most promising. The former third round pick of the Kansas City Chiefs averaged a historically high 6.4 yards per carry just a season ago in a year that the Chiefs led the NFL in rushing. In the process, Charles became the most dynamic young back in the league and seemed capable of breaking 2,000 yards if given enough carries. Fast forward one year and he's coming back from a season-ending injury.

Thus, the Chiefs are crossing their fingers that Charles can come back next season healthy and back to his old self. If not the Chiefs are going to have a hard time moving the chains without a dynamic quarterback. That's why some mocks have the Chiefs taking Trent Richardson with the first pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. Mocking the Draft is the latest to post a mock that reads as such:

Jamaal Charles is coming off a serious knee injury, Thomas Jones is old and Jackie Battle is mediocre. The Chiefs will likely remain a run-heavy team under now full-time coach Romeo Crennel. Richardson is an elite RB prospect with an excellent combination of vision, power and athleticism. While RB doesn't make sense for a lot of teams in the 1st round, the Chiefs would greatly benefit from having a talented back like Richardson. If Charles comes back healthy, the Kansas City running attack would be a real force to be reckoned with.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Riley Reiff Once Again Connected To Chiefs In First Round

The latest NFL Mock Draft to come from Drafttek has the Kansas City Chiefs headed to a familiar position: offensive tackle. The Chiefs have been linked to Jonathan Martin of Stanford, Mike Adams of Ohio State and Riley Reiff of Iowa in several mocks, and the latest from Drafttek has Reiff falling to the Chiefs at No. 12 overall:

After flirting with Luke Keuchly for a week, the Chiefs spin the tackle wheel again. This week it lands on the best OT prospect not named Matt Kalil. This is as good an outcome as the Chiefs could expect. Iowa is an offensive lineman factory, pumping out well schooled lineman like Brian Bulaga. The Chiefs have scouted Iowa heavily, taking Ricky Stanzi last year and Tony Moeaki the year before. Reiff is a better prospect than Bulaga. He is a bit small, checking in at 300 pounds. However, Reiff is a talented run and pass blocker. He also has a strong work ethic and is tenacious. The Chiefs desperately need to replace Barry Richardson. Richardson has graded out as the worst starting right tackle in the NFL. As a rookie, Reiff would probably start at right tackle. However, don’t rule out the Chiefs selecting another OT later in the draft. The Chiefs could have a top offensive trench by adding two more good lineman to go with Albert, Asamoah and Hudson.

That’s a good addition for the Chiefs considering how poor the tackle market is in free agency. It’s going to be difficult to fill unless they go for a high draft choice. Reiff is a great asset to add.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Is Ryan Tannehill Really A Top Six Pick?

Last year, it was clear just how needy several teams were for quarterback prospects. Blaine Gabbert was a top 10 trade target. Christian Ponder and Jake Locker both went much earlier than most expected. In the end it seemed that every NFL team with a hole at quarterback felt a sense of panic (outside of Cincinnati) and went for the best available prospect they could find, no matter of the rest of the draft board.

The same thing could happen this year in the 2012 NFL Draft, and Ryan Tannehill could be the beneficiary. Don Banks has the Texas A&M quarterback climbing in his first mock of the NFL off-season with a top six selection, going to the Washington Redskins to fill the void currently occupied by John Beck and Rex Grossman.

Banks writes, “So let’s keep in mind that this is our first mock of the year, not our seventh, which runs the day before the draft. I’m aware that Tannehill’s broken foot makes him a giant question mark at this point, and could possibly knock him out of the first round. But there’s a quarterback every year who gets pushed up the board in the pre-draft scouting process (see Ponder, Christian in 2011), and my early read is that Tannehill is the most likely candidate. Washington’s desperation at quarterback is obvious, and no Matt Barkley or Landry Jones means the Redskins might have to roll the dice on the ex-Aggie.”

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Devon Still Lands At No. 11 With Kansas City Chiefs

Don Banks over at Sports Illustrated has his pre-Super Bowl mock out for the 2012 NFL Draft, and the Chiefs finally find their long-term answer in the defensive interior if the cards fall the way he sees them. That’s because the best offensive tackles are gone which leaves the Chiefs with Devon Still of Penn State falling in their laps.

Banks writes, “Given the Chiefs’ need for an offensive tackle, they could pounce on Iowa’s Reiff if he falls past No. 9 Miami or opt for Stanford tackle Jonathan Martin. But Kansas City general manager Scott Pioli knows you can never have enough talented defensive linemen, and Still is a top-10-rated prospect who can provide a disruptive force in the middle of the Chiefs’ 3-4 front.”

That’s a good word from Banks considering the Chiefs have developmental players at the position alone. Kelly Gregg manned the middle last year but is a free agent, so it’s clear that some sort of addition will be made this off-season. Drafting a high round choice to help would make a lot of sense for Pioli in April’s draft.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Josh Norman Compared To Chiefs Brandon Carr

Coastal Carolina only has two NFL alum in their history, but Josh Norman is definitely going to add a third name to that list. The cornerback is rising up draft boards rather quickly with his top showing at the recent East-West Shrine Game, and he has been called a second rounder by one mock analyst and a Top 100 candidate by another. Clearly he’s coming off the board around Day Two.

But the corner is also earning some solid comparisons to a certain Kansas City Chiefs corner who is going to be earning a big paycheck this off-season. Scouts Inc. compares Norman to Brandon Carr of the Chiefs, a player who has started every single game since entering the league four seasons ago.

“Norman’s technique is raw. He opens his hips early, struggles to get out of his backpedal smoothly and needs to get stronger. His biggest challenge might be maintaining his focus and attention to detail. However, Norman’s tools are impressive, and he might be the best athlete on the field this week. He is smooth for his size (6-0⅜, 203), has good speed and natural instincts, and appears to have some ball skills.”

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Josh Norman Rising Fast Up Draft Boards, Linked To Chiefs In Second Round

One name rising up draft boards rather quickly with a strong showing at the East-West Shrine Game last week is cornerback Josh Norman of Coastal Carolina. And Mocking the Draft has Norman rising up within the 2012 NFL Draft’s 40 best prospects, going to the Kansas City Chiefs in the second round.

Norman is a prospect from Coastal Carolina and could be the third CCU player taken in NFL history. Cecil Lammey of the Denver Post has him projected as a second round choice, so this definitely within range. Before the game, Wes Bunting liked him enough to call him a “Top-100 pick.” He writes:

If there was an MVP of the week in St. Petersburg, Norman was the guy. He’s long, physical and showcased an impressive burst when asked to drive on the football. He was making plays all week and not only has a “plus” skill set, but also exhibits a very natural feel deciphering routes developing in front of him. There are some off-the-field character concerns, but he’s a legit top-100 pick.

For the Chiefs, everything to do with the secondary depends on the Chiefs ability to sign Brandon Carr. If they lose their starting corner, then the possibility exists that the Chiefs could take one early in this draft and Norman would fit the bill. At the same time, the team has other holes they have to fill and keeping Carr should still be an off-season priority.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Russell Wilson Makes Compelling Option For Kansas City Chiefs

As the NFL Draft approaches, various prospects are going to be taken off of draft boards for various reasons. Players with character concerns or spotty backgrounds might find themselves passed over despite their obvious talents. Other players might come with questions about their work ethic or selfishness, so they will be ignored as well. But others are forgotten because of their measurements, and that's the case for Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson, who measured in at the Senior Bowl this week at just under 5-11.

That's bad news for Wilson who had a strong senior season after transferring in to the Badgers program from North Carolina State. This year, Wilson went 225 for 209 for an incredible 72.8 completion percentage for 3,175 passing yards. He also threw 33 touchdowns against 4 interceptions. It was quite a year.

But NFL quarterbacks also have to have a certain look and Wilson lacks the stature for that. Yet Wilson is also one of those players who will just have to impress one team only to get him the look he desires in the draft. For a team who might take a flier on a quarterback in the draft while likely not one early, Wilson could provide that spark.

Mike Mayock raves about him and praises his abilities, saying he reminds him of a young Doug Flutie and it's possible he's a mid round choice. Wes Bunting of the National Football Post disagrees and says, "Wilson is a plus athlete who can spin the football and gives you a nice run/pass threat. However he's undersized, is going to struggle to consistently make plays from the pocket and is still learning how to work his way through defenses. He is worth a pick late, but I don't see the guy as a potential starter in the NFL. Reserve only."

But divisive quarterbacks are nothing new in the NFL. Ask the numerous NFL personnel who laughed when the Broncos took Tim Tebow in the first round. If the Chiefs are going to roll with Matt Cassel for another year as the starter, they should still reach for at least a developmental quarterback. Wilson could make things interesting.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Ryan Tannehill Rises To Kansas City Chiefs In First Round

It’s hard to tell if the Kansas City Chiefs have a need at quarterback. For many fans, the thought of going through another season with Matt Cassel or Kyle Orton or another journeyman is the worst way to go. Others, however, would point to the injuries and drama of last season and say that the Chiefs will be just fine if they can address the offensive line and get everyone healthy again. You can count Charlie Campbell among those who don’t believe since he has Ryan Tannehill, the quarterback from Texas A&M, as the Chiefs first round pick in his latest mock over at Walter Football.

Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel will turn 30 just after the 2012 NFL Draft and he is not a difference maker. Kansas City could groom the new quarterback for a year or two behind Cassel.

With Matt Barkley and Landry Jones returning to school, I agree with Walt that Ryan Tannehill will move up and get drafted well ahead of where he should go because of the demand at the position. Tannehill could be this year’s Blaine Gabbert/Christian Ponder.

The 6-foot-4, 222-pound Tannehill is a good athlete who can make big plays with his feet and has a strong arm. This season, he completed 62 percent of his passes for 3,744 yards with 29 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. The senior also rushed for 355 yards with four touchdowns. Tannehill was inconsistent and is still developing at the position. He played well versus Baylor and Missouri, but struggled against Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas.

Tannehill has only played one full season at quarterback (20 total starts at QB), so he will need time to develop at the pro level. As a wide out in 2008, Tannehill caught 55 passes for 844 yards and five touchdowns. He switched to quarterback in 2010 and played well in the last half of the season as the Aggies’ starter. Tannehill completed 65 percent of his passes for 1,638 yards with 13 touchdowns and six interceptions.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Arkansas Receiver Jarius Wright Falls To Chiefs In Fifth Round

The high-octane offense of Bobby Petrino could reap benefits on the pro level for the Kansas City Chiefs if the latest mock draft at Draftek is remotely correct with Arkansas Razorbacks receiver Jarius Wright going to the Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Wright would join a formidable wide receiver team that already includes last year's first round choice Jon Baldwin and Steve Breaston. The Chiefs have a major decision to re-sign Dwayne Bowe or not, but if they lose him, then a wide receiver must be selected at some point in the draft. Wright could be that player.

The National Football Post's Wes Bunting writes that Wright is "a coordinated athlete who is sharp as a route runner, tough over the middle and knows how to get open vs. man and zone. Will get re-routed vs. press at times and looks more like an inside player at the next level, but has the skill set to make a roster and carve out a big niche early."

If the Chiefs do re-sign Bowe, then it will be vital for Wright to also excel at special teams to make an impact on the roster.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft: Missouri's Michael Egnew Could Land With Kansas City Chiefs

Draftek has their latest six round version of the 2012 NFL Mock Draft available this week and the site has the Kansas City Chiefs taking a developmental quarterback in the fourth round in Florida State's E.J. Manuel. While that sounds nice, the reality is that E.J. Manuel is not available this year, so that's an impossibility. Moving on to alternate picks, however, they mention another name that should sound very familiar in Missouri's Michael Egnew at tight end.

Egnew would be a perfect pick for the Chiefs in the fourth round and likely a home run pick to most Kansas City Chiefs fans for a number of reasons. Having a local product to follow in the NFL is always a fun exercise, but more importantly, Egnew would give the Chiefs another offensive weapon at a position of need. Tony Moeaki had a great rookie season last year for the Chiefs, but the Iowa product has a problem staying healthy and he was lost for the season early last year.

Egnew is not just insurance, however, but he's also one of the best receiving tight end options in the draft. Don't forget that Aaron Hernandez from Florida fell to the fourth round before the Patriots picked him up. We all know how that move turned out. The two tight end attack would give the Chiefs another offensive look to go to and bolster the offense all around.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Select Zebrie Sanders From Florida State In Second Round

If the Kansas City Chiefs are not going to address the offensive tackle position in the first round, then the team will likely resort to a needs-based pick in the second round. At least, that's the scenario that unfolds in Draftek's latest mock draft which has the Chiefs selecting Zebrie Sanders in the second round to patch the hole at right tackle currently manned by Barry Richardson.

"This may be a bit high for Sanders, but the Chiefs have a huge hole at right tackle," reads the Draftek report. "Barry Richardson graded out as the worst starting right tackle in football. Last year, the Chiefs drafted Rodney Hudson from Florida State. The Chiefs often take players from the same school in consecutive years. Enter, Zebrie Sanders. Sanders played mostly right tackle at FSU.

"After Andrew Datko was lost to injury, Sanders slid over to left tackle and played well enough to elevate his stock. He is well schooled in the zone blocking scheme, if the Chiefs continue in that direction. Sanders is a agile player, but needs to upgrade his core strength. While the sim took him as a left tackle, he probably is not good enough to displace Branden Albert. However, he would provide a needed and talented upgrade to Barry Richardson at right tackle."

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Lamar Miller Drops To Kansas City Chiefs In Third Round

The latest 2012 NFL Mock Draft from Draftek has the Kansas City Chiefs finding an incredible gem in the third round in Miami running back Lamar Miller. While it's not surprising to see a running back tumble in the draft, it's nice to see one of the draft's most heralded running backs available fall to the Chiefs in the third round -- much like Jamaal Charles did a few years ago.

It's also fortuitous because the Chiefs would likely make the move with Charles coming off of Injured Reserve from a torn ACL. Miller would not only provide the necessary complement but insurance as well for the Chiefs running game in 2012. Charles will take some time to get back into exemplary game form even if he's 100 percent healthy. Thus, Miller becomes an immediate help to the Chiefs' offense.

Miller had 227 carries for 1,272 yards and 9 touchdowns this season for the Miami Hurricanes.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Luke Kuechly Linked To Kansas City Chiefs At No. 12

The Kansas City Chiefs continue to be linked to an inside linebacker for their first round choice in several mock drafts and particularly with Luke Kuechly of Boston College. While others have put Alabama’s Dont’a Hightower as a possibility, Kuechly seems the likely prospect if the Chiefs want to go the linebacker route. Draftek is the latest to link the Chiefs to the BC prospect in their latest mock for the 2012 NFL Draft.

“Offensive tackle remains the most likely position to be selected by the Chiefs in this spot,” reads the Draftek report. "Where will the Chiefs go if they don’t like the tackles left on the board? Luke Kuechly is the best player at a position of need. Jovan Belcher has held down the starting strong inside linebacker spot for the last two years. However, he had not developed as much as expected. He is strong against the run, but very weak in pass coverage. He ranks 33rd out of 36 inside linebackers in that area.

“The Chiefs would prefer to field inside linebackers that are versatile, eschewing the usual strong and weak roles. Kuechly would fit the bill nicely. The Chiefs ask their linebackers to be smart and disciplined. Kuechly rates high on those measures. He is a tackling machine, relying more on brains and instinct than elite physical skills. He could be the last piece of what should be a top notch linebacker corps featuring All-Pro’s Tamba Hali, Derrick Johnson and also Justin Houston.”

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Could Kansas City Chiefs Afford Luxury Pick Of Trent Richardson In First Round?

It all depends on where Scott Pioli and the rest of the Kansas City Chiefs front office has Trent Richardson on their draft board. That's the answer to the question of whether or not the Chiefs could pull the trigger if the Alabama running back happened to fall to their draft position at No. 11 or 12 overall in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft.

It's clear that Richardson is not only the top back available come April but that he's truly a special talent. Any team would be happy to welcome him into the fold, but the Chiefs also have needs -- like any other team. Thus, it's not as easy as selecting the top player on a draft board if he's not the greatest need. And for a team with needs on both lines, it's hard to picture the Chiefs selecting a running back with the first pick.

Yet Richardson's talent could be enough to warrant such a selection in the first place. That's the question Bill Williamson asked in a recent column over at ESPN.

Williamson writes, "If Richardson is available when the Chiefs pick, would they take him? Kansas City has needs on the defensive line and on the offensive line. Jamaal Charles, who was the second leading rusher in the NFL in 2010, is expected to be healthy this season. He was lost for the season when he tore the ACL in his knee in Week 2. Richardson would be a luxury pick in Kansas City. However, a backfield featuring Richardson and Charles would be one of the most dangerous running-back tandems in the NFL. It would also take immense pressure of quarterback Matt Cassel and an underrated passing game in Kansas City."

It still is a luxury pick, but it's not hard to picture Pioli sticking to his draft board. If he likes Richardson enough, he will take him.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Luke Kuechly Prepping Like Other Boston College Prospects For NFL

Luke Kuechly is following in the footsteps of other great Boston College prospects before him in his preparations for the 2012 NFL Draft, but it's likely he will be among the top BC prospects chosen in the last few years. That's because the linebacker's game is complete all the way around and it's likely he will be the first inside linebacker off of the board come April. For a team with a hole next to Derrick Johnson in the linebacking corps, that call might come from the Kansas CIty Chiefs.

Kuechly had 191 tackles this season, two short of the single season record, and is a two-time All American linebacker. Now he's prepping in the same way that guys like Anthony Castonzo did last season -- with IMG.

"Though he has passed up his senior season, the 6-foot-3-inch, 238-pounder is conducting business the same way he dealt with football: relentlessly," writes Mark Blaudschun. 'I’m down here doing what Anthony [Castonzo, former BC tackle] and Mark [Herzlich, former BC linebacker] did,’ said Kuechly by phone from Florida. 'I’m just working out, getting ready for the combine.' Both Herzlich, who is now with the New York Giants as they prepare to play in the NFC Championship game, and Castonzo, who was a first-round pick of the Indianapolis Colts last spring, worked out at IMG in preparation for their NFL careers."

The Chiefs, who already had a special defense last season, would appreciate Kuechly's efforts in the one spot on the field where there's still some improvement to make among its linebackers. Derrick Johnson also came out at season's end and said he hoped for some youth beside him as he and Hali come back for another season. Perhaps an investment like Kuechly is what is needed.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Dre Kirkpatrick's Arrest Not Likely To Affect His Stock Too Much

As college players get ready for the 2012 NFL Draft to be held in April, their agents are going to tell them to do everything they can to wow the various scouts and personnel of NFL clubs. That’s not only on the field but off the field as well, as character concerns and personality quirks can drop a guy from a team’s draft board entirely. Thus, the recent arrest of Dre Kirkpatrick was not exactly the best news his agent could have received.

Kirkpatrick was arrested days ago for possession of marijuana and many wondered whether it would drop the cornerback down draft boards. But even last year’s top pick, Cam Newton, didn’t come with a squeaky clean background and it didn’t effect him. In other words, this lone arrest for Kirkpatrick doesn’t automatically mean falling several rounds.

“How will this week’s arrest affect Kirkpatrick’s draft status or the Panthers’ possible interest in him?” asks Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer. “Not much, unless NFL teams determine it’s just one of several red flags for Kirkpatrick.”

That’s the key here. Is this a pattern or a kid being a kid? Will Kirkpatrick be a habitual offender and deal with legal issues while on an NFL roster or will he learn his lesson and not be an issue at all — like the Chiefs Justin Houston this season? Those are the questions to be asked and answered these next few months as teams want to know what they are getting.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft: Kendall Wright Could Join Cleveland Browns According To Mel Kiper

The Big 12 is going to be very well represented in this year’s NFL Draft, and Mel Kiper has two of the biggest stars from the conference headed to the same team in his latest mock draft. He has the Cleveland Browns, holders of picks No. 4 and 22, going to Baylor to draft both of their first round selections with Robert Griffin III and Kendall Wright. Wright would certainly be the dynamic playmaker that the team so desperately needs.

Kiper writes, “Quietly, Wright had a season that almost matched Blackmon’s in the Big 12. The Browns might not end up with Griffin with the No. 4 pick, but his teammate would make a lot of sense here. Greg Little is a developing big target and had a pretty good rookie season given the overall performance of the Cleveland offense. Wright is smaller at about 5-10, 190 pounds, but could add a speed threat this offense really needs. He can beat teams over the top with straight-line speed but also works underneath and will do a lot of damage after the catch. The Browns need weapons, and Wright, who also has great hands, fits the profile.”

Wright’s stock has risen alongside his quarterback’s all season long and now he might land with the same team, if Kiper is right. Wright is a talent all his own and he will get noticed now that he’s outside of Griffin’s shadow. After Justin Blackmon, he might be the best receiver available.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Robert Griffin III Lands With Cleveland Browns In Mel Kiper's Mock

Where will the Heisman Trophy winner fall in this year’s NFL Draft? That’s a big question heading into the April draft as Robert Griffin III is one of the most dynamic talents available this season. Many teams need a quarterback and yet Griffin might fall past the top three picks unless a major trade is made. If so, the Cleveland Browns might reap the benefits — according to Mel Kiper’s latest mock at least.

Kiper writes, “If a team moves ahead of the Browns for Griffin, they also could be in play for Blackmon, or even the guy I have at No. 5, Trent Richardson. However, the questions on Colt McCoy’s ceiling as a starting NFL quarterback are getting louder, and if the Browns don’t go after a solution such as Matt Flynn, a quarterback certainly could be in play here. Griffin made big strides this past season, particularly with his deep accuracy. He is a big-time athlete at the quarterback position but has developed a very good pocket presence and the ability to read the game, and his big arm comes with a nice touch on intermediate throws. He is a leader and has intangibles that should really impress evaluators during the draft process.”

Griffin has truly bloomed this season to become the hottest stock leading up the draft. If not for the immortal Andrew Luck locked in at No. 1, he’d be under consideration for first player taken. That said, other teams will be fighting for him immediately following that first selection.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Mel Kiper Has Kansas City Chiefs Selecting Devon Still At No. 11

The Kansas City Chiefs have had a major hole in the middle of their defensive line for the last few seasons. This year, Ron Edwards was let go and Kelly Gregg was signed to fill it, but those guys are both veterans near the end of their best playing days and KC has yet to invest a high draft choice at the DT position in a little while. This could be the year that changes that as Mel Kiper has Penn State’s Devon Still going to the Chiefs at No. 11 overall.

He writes, “Romeo Crennel could use a disruptive interior line presence in his system, and Still can be a penetrator in the 3-4, capable of occupying blockers and making plays in against the run while also splitting gaps against the pass. He came on in 2011 at Penn State and should help this defense up front, as the Chiefs also get Eric Berry back in the secondary in 2012. With this kind of reinforcement, the Chiefs have a chance to become an upper-echelon defense going forward, something they showed glimpses of this past season.”

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Mel Kiper Has Justin Blackmon Going To St. Louis Rams With No. 2 Selection

The St. Louis Rams clearly need a dominant playmaker to open up their offense for new coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, and Mel Kiper believes he’s likely to get his man in his first NFL Mock Draft for 2012 with the best wide receiver in college football over the last two years in Justin Blackmon from Oklahoma State. Blackmon has dominated not only the entire Big 12 but the national scene as well, coming up big in OSU’s bowl win over Stanford with three touchdowns just a few weeks ago.

“There’s a clear value question here, because I think St. Louis could leverage this position to trade down for more picks for 2012 and into the future, and then still target Blackmon perhaps a few spots later,” writes Kiper. “But if the Rams can’t find a dance partner for a trade, Blackmon still represents precisely what this offense needs. Sam Bradford took a step back in 2011, but he got little help, and Blackmon is a big target, a great route runner and a workaholic who could transition and learn the pro game quickly. St. Louis also could try to shore up an offensive line that took a step back, but Blackmon right now represents the top wide receiver in the draft and fills a big need for the Rams. It should be noted there are a number of teams drafting behind St. Louis that need an elite wide receiver.”

Blackmon won the Biletnikoff Award in 2010 and should win this year’s edition as well. Bradford should find new life in St. Louis if he lands a premiere wideout like Blackmon.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Linked To New Offensive Linemen In First Round

The Kansas City Chiefs have one primary concern for the upcoming NFL offseason with their offensive line, and it's clear that many believe they will address it with their first round pick as new NFL Mock Drafts come out. The latest round of four from NFL.com columnists have the Chiefs selecting four different players, so it's clear that no one knows exactly who they will take. However, they can agree that offensive tackle is a likely possibility.

Riley Reiff is Charles Davis' pick for the Chiefs in the first round, an offensive tackle from Iowa. That's a very popular pick for the Chiefs and Albert Breer agrees with that selection. Scott Pioli, the KC general manager, is certainly friendly with Kirk Ferentz and familiar with the Iowa program, and the Chiefs have selected their players before, including tight end Tony Moeaki and quarterback Ricky Stanzi in the last two drafts.

Pat Kirwan has the Chiefs going another direction with the choice of center Peter Konz of Wisconsin. He writes, "It might be too early to take a center, but Casey Wiegmann can’t play forever. This guy is a 10-year starter and a safe pick."

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Dre Kirkpatrick Arrested For Pot Possession, Draft Stock Likely To Fall

The Big Lead is reporting that one of the NFL Draft’s top cornerbacks coming out for the April draft is now going to find his stock going down because of one of the dumbest things a pro prospect can do: get arrested for, well, any reason. In Kirkpatrick’s instance, it’s for possession of marijuana.

Jason McIntyre writes, "Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama’s outstanding cornerback who is expected to be a 1st round NFL draft pick in April, was arrested early this morning for possession of marijuana. According to the Manatee Sheriff’s website, Kirkpatrick – who declared for the draft last week after Alabama beat LSU to claim the National title – was busted with less than 20 grams of cannabis. No other details are available yet."

If there was any doubt that Morris Claiborne of LSU would be the top corner off the board in the first round, those doubts are now quelled. As for Kirkpatrick, he could fall even farther, perhaps off of the first day. After all, Jimmy Smith fell to the bottom of the first round for character concerns despite his incredible and obvious talent. The Ravens reaped the rewards of that.

The Chiefs are likely to be in the market for a cornerback around their pick if they lose Brandon Carr to free agency. They have little depth in the way of starting quality at the position and a top tier corner like Kirkpatrick would be difficult to pass up -- character concerns or not.

Continue

Dre Kirkpatrick Arrested For Pot Possession,

The Big Lead is reporting that one of the NFL Draft’s top cornerbacks coming out for the April draft is now going to find his stock going down because of one of the dumbest things a pro prospect can do: get arrested for, well, any reason. In Kirkpatrick’s instance, it’s for possession of marijuana.

Jason McIntyre writes, “Dre Kirkpatrick, Alabama’s outstanding cornerback who is expected to be a 1st round NFL draft pick in April, was arrested early this morning for possession of marijuana. According to the Manatee Sheriff’s website, Kirkpatrick – who declared for the draft last week after Alabama beat LSU to claim the National title – was busted with less than 20 grams of cannabis. No other details are available yet.”

If there was any doubt that Morris Claiborne of LSU would be the top corner off the board in the first round, those doubts are now quelled. As for Kirkpatrick, he could fall even farther, perhaps off of the first day. After all, Jimmy Smith fell to the bottom of the first round for character concerns despite his incredible and obvious talent. The Ravens reaped the rewards of that.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Linked To Luke Kuechly Or Dont'a Hightower In First Round

Another round of 2012 NFL Mock Drafts are out over at the NFL’s main site and between four columnists, the Kansas City Chiefs are selecting four different players. That’s just how hard it is to tell where the Chiefs might go at No. 12 overall (or No. 11 depending on an upcoming coin flip). The Chiefs have need at inside linebacker, so it’s no surprise to find candidates like Luke Kuechly from Bosotn College or Dont’a Hightower from Alabama here. However, the variance shows just how upside-down the first round rankings are outside of the two top or three players.

Hightower was a major part of the championship defense for Nick Saban last season, but this is the highest slot I’ve seen him listed in any mock to this point. If he’s comparable to Rolando McClain, however, he might go even higher, as McClain went at No. 8 overall to the Oakland Raiders.

Kuechly, meanwhile, is largely considered the best linebacker in the country at this point by most sportswriters, so this is about the spot most people place him. The Chiefs already have a strong linebacking corps except for inside linebacker next to Derrick Johnson, so this choice would make it a truly elite unit.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Could Select OT Mike Adams From Ohio State

The last year was definitely a frustrating one for the Ohio State Buckeyes football team in every way on and off the field. However, there are still some bright spots to be found who will undoubtedly come up in the 2012 NFL Draft. Mike Adams is one such player who fought through a final collegiate season mired in drama and controversy to play well enough for first round consideration. In fact, Ryan Van Bibber has Adams going to the Kansas City Chiefs at No. 12 overall in his latest mock draft for SB Nation.

Van Bibber writes, “Once regarded as one of the country’s top tackle prospects, Adams stock fell amid all the shenanigans at Ohio State. I think he’s a prime candidate to rise up draft boards after the Senior Bowl. The Chiefs can unceremoniously dump Barry Richarson.”

That last line is what is key for the Chiefs at some point in the NFL offseason, whether through the draft or free agency. Replacing Richardson on the edge will definitely shore up the weakest link on the line and invigorate the front five with some youth if Adams is the guy. Others are also options including Riley Reiff and Jonathan Martin, so expect to hear many of these same names rotated going forward. The main idea is that right tackle is the biggest problem spot on the Chiefs roster.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Should Look At Chris Polk On Day Two

The Kansas City Chiefs are going to need some help in the offensive backfield if Jamaal Charles cannot return to full health -- a real possibility given that he's coming off of surgery for a torn ACL. The Chiefs offense has leaned heavily upon the running game for, well, as long as most can remember and the arm of Matt Cassel isn't going to change that any time soon. The offense needs Charles and company to be the primary way to move the chains, especially if the team fails to re-sign Dwayne Bowe to an extension. Thus, the team might reach for a running back in the 2012 NFL Draft.

With that said, Washington's Chris Polk would make an ideal addition to the Chiefs backfield with his ability to complement Charles' running style. As Charlie Campbell describes him below, it's easy to fall in love with the idea of a young one-two punch for the Chiefs.

"Polk, who had a strong 2011 season, runs with good vision, cutting ability and hits the hole quickly," writes Campbell. "He runs behind his pads and can power through defenders. Washington has had a subpar offensive line, and if Polk had better blocking, he could have even better numbers. The benefit to that line is the 5-foot-11, 222-pounder is a very patient runner who knows how to put defenders on blockers. This year, Polk ran for 1,488 yards (5.1 average) and 12 touchdowns. He also snagged 31 passes for 332 yards and four scores. Polk ran well against Stanford, one of the best defenses in the Pac-12. He had 144 yards on 15 carries and two touchdowns versus the Cardinal. Polk's draft stock remains stable, but could rise before the draft if he has strong workouts."

At this point, Polk is projected as a second rounder or he could even become an early third, depending on how the draft plays out. The Chiefs found Charles in the third and that turned out rather well. Polk could provide another offensive threat in the same way and, in doing so, provide insurance in case Charles isn't back to form.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Could Robert Griffin III Fall Past Cleveland Browns For Colt McCoy's Sake?

The NFL is a quarterback's league, so it's assumed that if a team seems weak at the position that they will grab a playmaker at QB if the right guy is there. When it comes to the 2012 NFL Draft, it's clear that there are two players that most believe will make a significant difference for a franchise: Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III. While the Indianapolis Colts are likely to take Luck at No. 1 overall, Griffin's slot depends on trades and which team is up to bat. Yet it's possible Griffin could slide farther than some believe.

The St. Louis Rams pick second and they already have Sam Bradford in house to go with the hopes of a new regime in place. Thus they're likely to get offensive line help with their top choice. The Minnesota Vikings are third and they took Christian Ponder at No. 12 last season. That leaves the Cleveland Browns at No. 4, assuming no team trades up with the Rams or Vikes.

The Browns have Colt McCoy under center and he hasn't exactly stormed the AFC North in the same way Andy Dalton has. However, it seems that McCoy might have enough fans in the locker room among his peers to retain the starter role. In other words, McCoy could still succeed if he were given some playmakers on offense like Dalton has in Cincinnati.

ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay told me in New Orleans he really thinks the Cleveland Browns could be in the market for a quarterback this spring because they're not totally committed to the second all-time winningest quarterback in college football history, but McShay's opposed to looking elsewhere for an answer," writes Kirk Bohls. "'I think they should develop Colt (McCoy)," McShay said. Better yet, the Browns should draft a marquee wide receiver like South Carolina's Alshon Jeffrey, a star at the next level. I agree with McShay. McCoy's had next to zero offensive weapons. 'Everybody in the (Browns) locker room loves Colt,' Dawson tells me. 'Everybody's convinced of his toughness.'"

If the team believes enough in McCoy, then Griffin falls to No. 5 and the price to trade for him seemingly falls with his draft placement. If that's the case, then he might come within reach for another team like the Chiefs who are currently outside of a likely range at No. 11 or 12 (pending coin flip) if Griffin is going to be the second or third player chosen. There's a lot to still come between now and April when the draft plays out, but it's interesting to consider the possibilities even now. Clearly Griffin will be a hot commodity and force teams to consider scenarios to grab him. The question is how available will he become.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Alabama's Courtney Upshaw Makes Jump Up Mel Kiper's Big Board

Courtney Upshaw put on a strong showing in the national championship game last Monday as the Alabama Crimson Tide shut out the favored LSU Tigers 21-0. In such a strong defensive display, players are bound to stick out and Courtney Upshaw is one such player. In fact, he was already climbing draft lists even before the game started — such as Mel Kiper’s Big Board. Kiper has Upshaw at No. 16 overall in his latest rankings and the DE/OLB could move higher if he shows strong at the NFL Combine.

Kiper writes, “A riser so far this year, he is showing improved pass-rush skills and should convert to 3-4 OLB at the next level. Great leverage player who uses hands well and battles against the run. Fits the LaMarr Woodley comparison.”

A player like Upshaw would be a value only addition for a team like the Chiefs, but it’s not out of the question for the Chiefs to grab him. They have Tamba Hali entrenched on one side of their linebacking corps and Justin Houston won the team’s rookie of the year award on the other side and came on strong later in the season. However, a team can never have enough rotational players among its pass rushers and Upshaw could move up draft boards to become the best value.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Landry Jones' Decision Boosts Stock Of Matt Flynn, Ryan Tannehill

There are fewer and fewer quarterback options in the official draft class for the 2012 NFL Draft coming up in April. That’s bad news for teams like the Kansas City Chiefs, among many others, who could be among those expected to go for a quarterback with one of its first selections in the coming draft. The Seahawks, Redskins, Dolphins and Browns are also among teams picking early who were hoping for better chances than this.

As it is, the pickings were already slim with Andrew Luck all but chosen by the Indianapolis Colts up front and Robert Griffin III going shortly after that. Matt Barkley withdrew to go back to USC and now Landry Jones is following suit back to Oklahoma. That leaves Ryan Tannehill of Texas A&M as the next best option for many teams.

Some, like NFP’s Wes Bunting, believe in Tannehill’s ability at the next level, but that’s not an opinion shared by all. Bunting writes, “With such limited experience at the quarterback position it’s not a case of where this guy is right now, but where he can be in 2/3 years. I love the talent and the overall production from a guy who doesn’t have much experience playing from under center as he plays way beyond his years. A potential franchise quarterback in my mind.”

While others like Nick Foles, Brandon Weeden, Kirk Cousins or Kellen Moore might move up or down draft boards, it’s clear that franchise quarterbacks are in short supply in the class of 2012. That makes trade candidates that much more attractive. If the Packers can sign back-up quarterback Matt Flynn with the franchise tag, they’ll be able to reap the benefits of the college juniors heading back for their final victory lap.

The unfortunate part of all of this is the fan bases who will be forced to sit and watch another year of mediocre quarterbacks at the helm for those teams unable to make a move. There were already too many games featuring the same uninspiring group of veteran retreads this year and the loss of guys like Jones and Barkley make it look like next year will feature more of the same.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Luke Kuechly Could Fit With Kansas CIty Chiefs

If there’s one position the Kansas City Chiefs seem fairly loaded at, it’s the one with one of the AFC’s best pass rushers and the team’s defensive MVP. The Chiefs linebacking corps is one of their strengths with both Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson manning one side and Justin Houston emerging on the outside opposite Hali. However, the other linebacker slot does need upgrading and Jesse Bartolis thinks the perfect candidate could drop into their lap in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft.

Luke Kuechly is a dynamic playmaker from Boston College slated to go off of the board around the top 10 or 15 in most mock drafts, which makes him perfectly slotted for the Chiefs pick at No. 11 or 12, depending on the great coin flip to make the determination. While there might be other needs for the Chiefs, it could make the right value pick.

Bartolis writes, “Perfect fit, I think for the Chiefs. Although an upgrade at LT might be ideal, this pick would be a solid one. Hali, Johnson, Kuechly, Houston become one of the best linebacker corps in the entire league. With the return of Berry next year the Chiefs could potentially have the best back seven in all of football (8 for a 34 team I guess). Now that front 3 could use some help.”

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: North Carolina's Zach Brown Faces Maturity Questions

The Kansas City Chiefs were recently linked with Zach Brown in a recent NFL Mock Draft and the North Carolina linebacker is definitely going to be one of the top defensive players off of the board in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft. However, while the Chiefs will likely pass on the player given the needs they have to fill at other positions, Brown himself will have some explaining to do at the NFL Combine and Pro Days in order to separate himself from questions surrounding his maturity and character.

Charlie Campbell brings this up in his draft blog over at Walter Football and says it might counter his incredible on-field skills. He writes, “Whoever drafts Brown has to be confident that he is mature enough to handle a big-money NFL contract. It is definitely clear the Brown has the talent to be a special player, but as Carter said, Brown needs to have his head straight. Maturity concerns could put into question Brown’s status as a first-round pick with some teams in the 2012 NFL Draft.”

Brown had 91 tackles and 5.5 sacks this season for the Tar Heels.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Montee Ball Taking Risks By Going Back To Wisconsin

When a player says they’re not going to declare for the NFL Draft but instead go back to school, one of the assumptions about the decision is that they’re trying to round out their pro game among other things. For Montee Ball, with the reported decision that he’s likely to come back to Wisconsin, the move doesn’t make sense according to Walter Football’s Charlie Campbell. Instead, Campbell writes that Ball has likely maxed out his abilities at the college level and that he only risks injury and a down year by going back to his alma mater for his senior year.

The junior 5-11 back rushed for 1,923 yards and 33 touchdowns last year on his way to carrying Wisconsin to the Big Ten title and a Rose Bowl appearance. Better yet, he made himself a Heisman Trophy finalist and gave himself national recognition in the process. All of that makes his exit timely to go into the April draft now.

Campbell writes, "Overall there are a lot risks that Ball is taking in returning to school. One college coach told players considering if they should make the jump to the NFL, “You can either help your family, or you can help mine.” Ball probably wouldn’t improve his stock by returning to Wisconsin, so the time is right for him to go to the NFL."

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Montee Ball Reportedly Likely To Return To Wisconsin

Montee Ball has announced a press conference for today at 3pm CT, and it’s being reported that the star Wisconsin running back and Heisman Trophy finalist will return to Wisconsin for his senior year, forgoing the 2012 NFL Draft for the hope of raising his draft stock. That’s a good move if scouts’ notions of Ball’s NFL chances are true.

Ball had an incredible season last year, leading the Badgers with 33 rushing touchdowns and 1,923 rushing yards. Another year at Wisconsin could help him work on other aspects of his pro game. Matt Waldman, for example, thinks Ball needs to work on his receiving skills to round out his game.

He writes, “As a runner, Ball lacks a good third gear and he is caught from behind on longer runs. ESPN/ABC commentator Brent Musberger’s characterization of Ball as “the hammer,” is also overstated. Ball has good balance and he will run through arm tackles, but he is not a great pile mover. In the NFL, I think Ball’s skills may translate more to those of Chester Taylor in his prime than a long-term feature back and this is only if Ball becomes a better player in the passing game and third down.”

The current running back class is headed by Trent Richardson of Alabama, who should be an early first round selection.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Could Robert Griffin III Go Before Andrew Luck For Colts?

Andrew Luck has been the shoe-in choice for the first overall pick for, well, any year that he could possibly declare for the Draft. Luck has simply been that good for that long for Stanford, and it almost seems silly for the Indianapolis Colts to ignore Luck’s secure standing as a future star and overanalyze the pick enough to move on to someone else. Yet Robert Griffin III is apparently an intriguing enough prospect to think about just that.


Related: Updated NFL Draft Order

ESPN’s Jemele Hill argues that RG3 is actually the better prospect specifically suited for the Colts, especially if Peyton Manning is going to stay in place. Jim Irsay shocked Manning with the firing of Bill Polian, the team’s architect as long as Manning has been in the NFL. However, Irsay also seems to want to partner with Manning in a way that keeps him around for both his continued playing and non-playing days.

That said, Griffin makes the most sense according to Hill:

Both Griffin and Luck could play right away, but Luck is a more polished product. Griffin, on the other hand, could benefit from sitting behind Manning awhile. He could be another Aaron Rodgers, who sat behind Brett Favre for three seasons before becoming Green Bay’s starter in 2008.

Also, the quarterback position in the NFL is changing. Traditional pocket passers are still a desired commodity, but the idea that an athletic quarterback is a liability is outdated. By breaking Manning’s rookie passing-yardage record, Cam Newton showed a more dangerous quarterback model is emerging — a pass-first, freakish athlete who can make dazzling plays with his legs.

Newton and Griffin are different players, but Griffin fits the general mode that Newton established. Griffin’s running ability is as rare as Newton’s and Michael Vick’s. Griffin, an All-American in track at Baylor, possesses legitimate 4.4 speed. If you combine that with the fact that he throws perhaps the most accurate deep ball in college football, Griffin’s upside is absolutely staggering.

While that might be true, there’s no way of knowing whether or not Manning will be healthy until he suits up in the fall and takes some game-level hits. Luck provides the most stability for the league’s worst franchise and Griffin’s soaring stock is getting pulled into recent hype. That’s not to take away from Griffin whatsoever, because he should also turn out to be a fine pro quarterback, but Luck has been at the top for a reason.

If, however, the Colts were to turn to Griffin for that top choice, it’s clear that Luck’s price would also go down in terms of trade value. The Chiefs are among the teams that could and should make a move for Luck if he were available at No. 2 or 3 overall in the draft for a trade package to get him. The St. Louis Rams and Minnesota Vikings are on the clock for the next two choices and neither one is in dire need of a quarterback (although it’d be hard to argue against taking Luck if he was magically available). Thus, they might be willing to surrender for the right draft bounty.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Kansas City Chiefs Somehow Linked To Zach Brown Despite Justin Houston's Presence

The latest NFL Mock Draft is out from the Sporting News and Russ Lande has the Kansas City Chiefs going with an outside linebacker. Zach Brown of North Carolina is his choice and it’s a name who has been crawling up draft boards, so the selection around No. 12 is not surprising in theory. However, this would completely ignore the man named Chiefs Rookie of the Year in Justin Houston.

More: Check out SB Nation's latest NFL mock draft.

“Brown can get after the quarterback and would draw attention from Tamba Hali,” writes Lande, “the Chiefs’ only consistent pass rusher. Brown would fit ideally at outside linebacker opposite Hali in Kansas City’s 3-4 scheme.”

That was a major need a season ago or even a half season ago. But Houston had 5.5 sacks in the Chiefs last 5 games and came alive even in run support. The Chiefs made Houston an early third round choice last April and stuck with him through growing pains in the preseason and early in the regular season. The work paid off as Houston really turned the corner toward maturity on a Chiefs team that already has strong linebackers in Derrick Johnson, the team’s MVP, and Tamba Hali, one of the greatest pass rushers in the NFL.

If KC is going to make a draft investment in their linebackers, it’s going to be at inside linebacker and even then they’ve extended free agent signee from last season Brandon Siler, who sat out all season on injured reserve. There’s simply no way the Chiefs take Brown here despite his talent.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Justin Blackmon Cements Himself As Best Wide Receiver Available With Fiesta Bowl Performance

Justin Blackmon saved his best for last. The Fiesta Bowl performance by Justin Blackmon as his Oklahoma State Cowboys beat the Stanford Cardinal on national television 41-38 in overtime was a beautiful one. For a player largely described as the best wide receiver in college football over the last two seasons, Blackmon just gave a curtain call to wow them all.

Last night, Blackmon had 8 receptions for 186 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns. As last year’s Biletnikoff Award winner for the best receiver in football, a win this year is almost guaranteed and it’s now clear that he will certainly be chosen as the winner this year.

“Good gracious, Justin Blackmon,” writes Ubben. “I mentioned it in the postgame video, but this was probably the best game of his career in the last game of his career. The Cowboys needed every single yard he racked up, including a crazy catch in the fourth quarter to extend the game that, with all the late drama that followed, ended up getting overshadowed. On fourth-and-4 with a little more than three minutes left, he caught a short slant and took it 21 yards. Big-time play in a big-time spot. Three touchdown catches in a BCS bowl? He hadn’t had three TDs all season, and hadn’t done so since catching three against Tulsa in 2010. That was his second game in the season’s first three games with three touchdowns.”

So where does Blackmon go in the draft? Could he go as high as No. 2 overall? While the St. Louis Rams need playmakers all over, including along the offensive line, can they pass on Blackmon’s incredible ability to bring the best out of their investment in Sam Bradford? Or what about the Vikings at No. 3 who need to surround Christian Ponder with as much weaponry as they can, especially given Adrian Peterson’s injury at season’s end? Even the Browns at No. 4 have no top shelf playmaker at receiver.

Blackmon is certain to hear his name called among the first picks in the draft and every team would love the chance to use him. Watching the Bengals resurgence with A.J. Green as their first pick shows that grabbing an impact receiver is not just a luxury pick, but it can actually turn things around.

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Chiefs Select Riley Reiff To Bolster Offensive Line

The latest mock is in for the 2012 NFL Draft and Ryan Van Bibber of SB Nation has the Kansas City Chiefs selecting an offensive tackle, a theme that’s becoming rather consistent among NFL analysts. Specifically he has an Iowa tackle falling to the Chiefs just outside of the top 10 to help replace Barry Richardson on the right side.

Van Bibber writes, “Kyle Orton, Matt Cassel or a player to be named later, none of them would find ideal working conditions behind the Chiefs’ current offensive line. Reiff can play either tackle spot, and he will help Jamaal Charles in the run game.”

Reiff would definitely be an asset on a line that needs major help. Casey Wiegmann might be retiring and Ryan Lilja has been exposed as an issue along the line as well. The Chiefs are likely to address the line in some major ways via both the draft and free agency this offseason in the hopes of keeping the team healthy and the quarterback, whoever he is, upright in the pocket.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Matt Flynn Benefits From Matt Barkley's Return To USC

Anyone and everyone writing today about the Green Bay Packers prolific offensive display against the Detroit Lions is writing about Matt Flynn. Specifically, they are noting how much money he likely made himself by throwing for a team record 480 passing yards and six touchdowns. That said, Flynn had already made his money when a certain college quarterback decided not to enter the NFL Draft.

When Matt Barkley made his press conference announcement that he would be returning for his final year at USC surrounded by the marching band and all, Flynn immediately became the third best option for a team searching for a quarterback. Barkley was currently in that role, usurped for No. 2 by the surge of Robert Griffin III’s stock. But as much as teams are willing to pay for a quarterback (and as much as they need one), Flynn already had his suitors lining up whether or not he blew away the Lions, which certainly doesn’t hurt.

The Indianapolis Colts have the first overall selection and they will take Andrew Luck. The Rams and Vikings come next and they already have Sam Bradford and Christian Ponder in house from the draft over the last two years. Now there are cases to be made for selecting RG3 over both of those guys, but that’s not likely to happen and the Browns are on the clock at No. 4. That makes them the likely home of Griffin unless someone trades up.

In short, any franchise stuck outside of the top four choices in the draft must consider a veteran like Matt Flynn who has been stuck behind Aaron Rodgers. Or they might think about a guy like Landry Jones, if he comes out for the draft. There’s simply no one else to consider in terms of a rookie. Flynn, then, becomes the third best option and likely over Landry Jones no matter what the OU quarterback decides.

While Flynn might have added some additional bonus footage for anyone interested in his services on Sunday, the reality is that Flynn was already in the mix for teams like the Washington Redskins or Miami Dolphins or even Kansas City Chiefs depending on what they do with Matt Cassel. And he can thank Matt Barkley for going back to USC for his current position.

Continue

Robert Griffin III's Choice To Declare For NFL Draft 'Is Not A Hard Decision'

Robert Griffin III has done just about everything that he can do. He’s taken the Baylor Bears to national relevance. He won 10 games this season. He won a bowl game in dramatic fashion in the Alamo Bowl win over Washington. He even won the Heisman Trophy. So it’s hard to blame him if he doesn’t ride the tremendous spotlight and momentum he’s earned to declare for the NFL Draft in April. His father says it’s only a matter of time given that the decision is “not a hard” one.

“He actually has made a strong case to return because he’s only 12 hours short of his master’s, but he believes he can still accomplish that goal,” Griffin II said. “He’s still waiting for his official evaluation from the league, but the decision (to turn pro) is not a hard decision.”

Griffin is widely expected to be the second quarterback taken off of the board after Andrew Luck but even that’s likely to be questioned given the incredible ride that Griffin has been on over the last few months. Still at the end of the day, it’s easy to picture Luck going first overall and the rest of the quarterback needy teams — perhaps the Chiefs — vying for the chance to take Luck.

Continue

2012 NFL Draft: Chiefs Likely To Pass On Trent Richardson, Grab Later Round Running Back

It was a position that defined the Kansas City Chiefs offense not only last season but over the life of the team's success for the last couple of decades. The running back position has always been the Chiefs strongest suit for a generation -- from Priest Holmes to Christian Okoye and Larry Johnson to Jamaal Charles. Now the team might be looking for someone else to add to the mix since the current lot is a mix of health risks and older veterans.

That someone might come from the upcoming NFL Draft. The Chiefs aren't likely to grab a running back in the first round unless they're enamored with Alabama's Trent Richardson and he falls to their draft spot. Instead, Adam Teicher says it's likely to come later in the draft.

Teicher writes, "The Chiefs' offseason to-do list will include adding a running back. Look for them to sign a free agent or draft a back in the mid-to-late rounds. Jamaal Charles will return next year following knee surgery, but the Chiefs shouldn’t count on him being at full strength when the season begins. Among their current backs, Jackie Battle runs hard every time he touches the ball but lacks the burst that is mandatory for a feature back. Thomas Jones is at the end of his career, and Dexter McCluster is a third-down and change-of-pace back but not an every-down player."

Continue

Is Andrew Luck In Danger Of Losing Ground To Robert Griffin III In 2012 NFL Draft?

Let the quarterback furor concerning the NFL Draft begin. Andrew Luck has held the top spot so long that it’s hard to imagine anyone supplanting him. Robert Griffin III has enjoyed such a spike in attention and consideration (and consequently, admiration), that he might be the guy to do it. Put the two together and you have a legitimate discussion on just who is the best quarterback in the country right now in terms of pro prospects.

Most will still say that Luck is the top dog in the draft, however the offseason workouts have not started and the Combine isn’t even for another two months. Wes Bunting of the National Football Post recently weighed in to see what he thought of the two head to head and he still likes Luck at the top. After praising Griffin’s potential, he still says Luck is the safest bet.

Bunting writes, "With that being said, Luck really is a rare prospect at the position. He’s a “plus” in just about every category you evaluate a quarterback in outside of arm strength, but has the frame to get stronger and I don’t think arm strength will ever be a real concern for him at the next level. He’s a bright kid both on and off the field who deciphers information quickly. Is comfortable on the move, finds secondary targets while working his way across the field and is one of the few college quarterback prospects to come along with experience calling plays at the line and getting his team in and out of formations pre snap.

“When you look at his physical capabilities and add them to his mental skill set, you have a guy who is as close to a can’t miss at the position as possible. And in my estimation looks like a future pro bowl guy who can be that franchise signal caller long term.”

Continue

Robert Griffin III Likely Declaring For 2012 NFL Draft After Alamo Bowl Victory For Baylor

Robert Griffin III has put on a dazzling display each and every week of this college football season for the Baylor Bears. His latest one wasn’t nearly as dynamic as others, but it’s hard to deny his leadership at quarterback during last night’s 67-56 win in the Alamo Bowl over Washington. Michael David Smith notes that Griffin is likely to use the bowl victory as the final feather in his collegiate cap to declare for the NFL Draft.

He writes, "Griffin was asked in his post-game interview whether he has played his final college game and he said, “I have no idea.” But asked when he’ll decide if he’s entering the draft, Griffin said, “Pretty soon here, probably.”

“That’s a departure from what Griffin has said previously, that he wants to wait until the deadline to declare for the NFL draft. Griffin sounded like he’ll be ready to make his announcement any day now.”

If he declares, he’s instantly the second best quarterback available in the draft and it will be interesting to see if he can leap over Andrew Luck with the offseason workouts.

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Landry Jones Won't Make Decision For Two More Weeks

Landry Jones has made an announcement about his possible declaration for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft: he will announce his decision later. The only official word from the Oklahoma quarterback is that he’s apparently having a hard time making his decision. That’s certainly understandable given the season he’s had and the possibilities before him.

“I’ve gone back and forth so many times,” Jones said during the Insight Bowl’s media day. “Right now, it’s kind of like a null point where I’m not even thinking about it at all. I just really need to sit down after the year’s done and clear my head, without any thoughts of Iowa or my next game coming up," he said.

On the one hand, with Matt Barkley out of the picture, only Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck are the clear one-two quarterbacks eligible for the Draft and even Griffin could take himself out of the running. With the number of teams that have questions remaining at the most important position in the NFL, Jones’ name will still be called despite a season that didn’t go as planned.

There’s no telling what Jones will do, but it’s hard to find a quarterback stock that Jones is likely to go much higher in unless he significantly improves his play and the overall team play next year on the field. Given the chance to become injured or fall even farther, it’s a tough decision either way.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Landry Jones Could Become Kansas City Chiefs' Quarterback Prospect

The Kansas City Chiefs have some major decisions ahead of them in the 2012 NFL Draft's first round. They need some linebacking help as well as some additions at offensive tackle. They could also head toward a quarterback prospect. That's what Walter Football's Charlie Campbell believes the Chiefs will head that direction when they select Oklahoma's Landry Jones. He writes:

A new coach in Kansas City could easily lead to a new signal caller. Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel will turn 30 just after the 2012 NFL Draft. They could groom the new quarterback for a year or two behind him.

There is no doubt that Jones is fortunate to go this high considering his late-season fade, but the demand for quarterbacks will help him to get drafted higher. Jones has the size (6-4, 229) and arm that NFL teams look for. He had another big season throwing to wide outs Ryan Broyles, Kenny Stills and Jaz Reynolds. Broyles is out for the year, and that hurt the Oklahoma signal caller in the final few games. Jones destroyed Texas and Kansas State this season, but had bad games against Baylor and Oklahoma State. For 2011, the junior has completed 63 percent of his passes for 4,302 yards with 28 touchdowns and 14 interceptions.

Jones is behind the three other top quarterbacks in part because they definitely have the 'it' factor to raise the play of those those around them. The losses against the Bears and the Cowboys bring into question whether or not Jones possesses the 'it' factor to push his team to a win. He started 10 games as a freshman and 14 games in 2010. Jones made big strides as a sophomore, completing 65 percent of his passes for 4,718 yards with 38 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Continue

NFL Mock Draft 2012: Luke Kuechly Could Land With Kansas City Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs signed Brandon Siler in the off-season to help out the interior linebacker position and provide some competition for Jovan Belcher. Instead, the free agent signee went out for the season in the last preseason game and the Chiefs are likely still going to be looking for some additional linebacker help despite the presence of promising rookie Justin Houston and stars like Derrick Johnson and Tamba Hali. That's why NFL Mocks has the Chiefs possibly going with Luke Kuechly to help out with their upcoming first round pick.

Jesse Bartolis writes, "Kuechly just seems like a Chiefs kind of player. The Chiefs need someone opposite Hali (is Justin Houston that player), but they could also use an upgrade next to Derrick Johnson. If the Chiefs can grab Kuechly and maybe hope Dontari Poe makes it to them in the second round they could have a really nice front seven next year to go along with their talented secondary."

Continue

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Kansas City Chiefs Linked To Ohio State's Mike Adams

After witnessing the penalties and poor play for yet another week from right tackle Barry Richardson, it’s quite clear why the Kansas City Chiefs are linked to a replacement in most mock drafts. Whether it’s Iowa’s Riley Reiff or Stanford’s Jonathan Martin, the Chiefs are usually addressing the o-line in some way in most mocks. However, there’s another name to consider as Draft Tek believes they could go for Mike Adams from Ohio State. Matt De Lima writes:

Mike Adams has been suspended for seven games in his collegiate career. That fact may ultimately hurt his draft stock with some teams, but his pro potential is very good despite being a raw prospect.

Given his elite height and size, Adams certainly passes the eyeball test as a pro prospect. He is the prototypical left tackle prospect who really excels with his footwork and has the talent to improve his technique. Adams will need to grow as a run blocker. He lacks that killer instinct offensive line coaches fall in love with. He will need to correct his techniques as a zone blocker as he sometimes loses his assignment and gets lost out in open space.

The most promising facets to Adams’ skill-set are his frame and good feet. He may need an extra year to develop or grow into the position as a rookie, but most every team in the NFL is willing to be patient with a guy his size.

Adams will climb up draft boards as teams review his 2011 game film and see that he has grown since his junior year. He projects as a second round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Continue

NFL Draft 2012: Devon Still Among Top Defensive Tackles For Kansas City Chiefs To Consider

They brought in Kelly Gregg on a one year deal and let other options go to clear the way for a change in the middle of the defensive front. Thus it’s likely that despite the fact that they drafted a developmental tackle in the sixth round in Jerrelle Powe last year, the Kansas City Chiefs are likely to choose another DT in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft.

Dan Pompei of the National Football Post says that Penn State’s Devon Still is among the top available for a first round selection. He writes, “Scouts say the highest rated tackle prospect now is Devon Still from Penn State, son of former Chiefs great Art Still. Devon is big, strong and quick and can fit in any scheme, but he reminds one general manager a little of Jimmy Kennedy. Still could be leapfrogged on draft boards by Michigan State junior Jerel Worthy depending on how the workout and interview processes go. Worthy is stout and quick off the ball.”

Continue
X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Kansas City

You must be a member of SB Nation Kansas City to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Kansas City. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Kansas City

You must be a member of SB Nation Kansas City to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Kansas City. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.