The latest mock draft over at The Sporting News from Clifton Brown gives the Kansas City Chiefs the best overall linebacker in the 2012 NFL Draft class and that might be the very interior defender that could put the Chiefs over the top. Kuechly would be the Chiefs top pick at No. 11 in the first round.
The Boston College linebacker would fit between last year’s third round pick of Justin Houston from Georgia and defensive MVP Derrick Johnson. Placed with Tamba Hali, the Chiefs four linebackers would be among the best corps in the NFL. Houston came on strong last season with 5.5 sacks in the last five games of the season, and Johnson and Hali are Pro Bowl players.
Right now, the linebacker position is likely to come down to Brandon Siler and Jovan Belcher, both of whom recently re-signed for this 2012 season. Neither is a three down player at this point, so that’s the reason that many mock drafts have the Chiefs grabbing a linebacker this early.
Wes Bunting of the National Football Post has Kuechly as his best inside linebacker available in the draft by a large margin. He loves his all-around game in his scouting report:
He’s not the biggest, strongest or fastest of athletes. But he’s instinctive, plays faster than he times, finds the football in all areas of the game and can really tackle. He’s going to be a bit limited in coverage, but he’s instinctive enough to play on third down in zone and should end up being one of the NFL’s top tackling linebackers for years to come.
Kuechly was the top tackler in the nation last season with 191.
For more on the Kansas City Chiefs offseason plans and the upcoming draft, check out Arrowhead Pride.