Mel Kiper’s latest mock draft over at ESPN has Luke Kuechly as the official selection of the Kansas City Chiefs in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft. At No. 11, Kuechly would be the first linebacker off the board and would provide Scott Pioli with top value on his draft board. Kiper writes:
Kuechly came to Indy with concerns about his size. But he weighed in at over 240 pounds, easing some of those concerns, and then shined in workouts, proving the added bulk won’t slow him down; a classic case where a guy answers the big questions and solidifies his stock.
Romeo Crennel needs linebackers with great instincts who can be physical in the run game, make stops and also get into the backfield when asked. Kuechly is simply a machine, a prototype for what you want in an interior linebacker. I can see the Chiefs looking for a nose tackle, so if Poe is around, that pick makes sense as well.
Kiper ends with that mention of Dontari Poe, who was taken at No. 9 by the Carolina Panthers. That would certainly make a bit more sense than Kuechly for the Chiefs, simply for the need on the roster for a defensive tackle rather than an inside linebacker at this point for the Chiefs. However, both players would make fine additions to the Chiefs defense.