The 2011 NFL draft is still several months away but in the last few years it's become almost its own sport with the amount of attention it receives. The 2011 NFL draft order isn't set yet because the NFL season is over but we can begin to slot some teams. It's looking like the Chiefs will pick in the low to mid 20s of the draft depending on how the season finishes.
But who will they pick? And what position will they pick? We won't find out actual answers for that until draft day but here's a look at a few positions they might be thinking about:
Cornerback: I wonder how long the Chiefs will keep both Brandon Flowers and Brandon Carr in Kansas City. Don't get me wrong -- I WANT both back in Kansas City. But they're both playing very well which, when contract time comes around, means they're going to get paid. I'd love to keep them both here but I'm also cognizant of the money involved paying a position like cornerback.
Wide receiver: This one's obvious. Would the Chiefs actually go after a receiver? I have no idea but I do think they need to get some help with Dwayne Bowe. Speaking of Bowe, his contract is up after next year. Will he be back? That's a legitimate question even with his 2010 season going so well.
Nose tackle: This is a perceived position of need for the Chiefs especially since Ron Edwards may not be around much longer. When in doubt, I say you go with the size in the first round.
Running back: This probably isn't a first round position -- at least I don't think it is -- but after Thomas Jones is gone the Chiefs need a backup plan in place for someone to ride with Jamaal Charles. I would guess they'd address this position late and team someone with a mentor like Jones for 2011.
Linebacker: I could see the Chiefs going inside or outside here.There are a few situations to watch at outside linebacker. First, what will they do with Tamba Hali, whose contract expires after this year? Second, what's Cameron Sheffield's recovery/timetable? And then at inside linebacker, you've locked up Derrick Johnson. What about Jovan Belcher?
Offensive line: I could see them going in a number of ways here including right tackle. Barry Richardson and Ryan O'Callaghan seem to be OK for now but what about the future? Is there a high ceiling there to upgrade? The Chiefs are likely set at guard with Brian Waters, Ryan Lilja and Jon Asamoah. Center may be too high here.