The 2012 NFL Draft has plenty of guards and interior offensive linemen who can play at the pro level, so it’s likely that a great number of teams will find starters or future starters this year in the draft — perhaps even in later rounds. The Cheifs have been linked with David DeCastro of Stanford in past mock drafts in the first round, but Charlie Campbell of Walter Football believes they can get a strong addition in the second round in Wisconin’s Kevin Zeitler.
Campbell writes, “Center Casey Wiegmann will turn 39 in July. He’s considering retirement, so if he follows through, the Chiefs will need an interior offensive lineman, depending on where they want to utilize 2011 second-rounder Rodney Hudson.”
The Chiefs already have Ryan Lilja at the left guard position and Jon Asamoah on the right side. Lilja could be replaced and listed as depth instead, or Zeitler could learn for a year and become a fill-in replacement along the line like Hudson did last season.
Wes Bunting of the National Football Post believes Zeitler can start sooner than later. He writes, “A tough, strong in-line guy who you can run behind and also has some coordination on the move. Not as effective in the pass game, but can mature into an average NFL pass blocker if he learns to get off the ball more consistently. Looks like a gritty type starter early on in his NFL career to me.”