Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Kansas City's new draft focus
By Tim Kavanagh
Well, the Kansas City Chiefs found their new QB: a deal has been reached for them to acquire QB Alex Smith, sending their 2013 second-round pick (No. 34 overall) and a conditional pick in 2014 to San Francisco in exchange. With Smith set to join the roster once the trade becomes official on March 12, that means that they won't be targeting a QB with the No. 1 overall pick. So who will they select?
In the wake of the news, an echo chamber effect was seen on Twitter, as many felt the urge to express their belief that Texas A&M OT Luke Joeckel would now be the Chiefs' pick. He still could be. But it's not a definite by any stretch. The Chiefs do have an impending free agent at the LT position in Branden Albert, and although Albert is not considered to be amongst the top-tier, he's a viable option; moreover, he's a known commodity.
The Chiefs are also not without need for improvement at other positions on the roster. Utah DT Star Lotulelei has the ability to kick out to play a 3-4 DE, and Kansas City is looking for help there. Despite a relative lack of ball skills, Alabama CB Dee Milliner is just about the total package at that position, and would form a dominant duo with Brandon Flowers. (Of course, no CB has ever been drafted No. 1 overall).
Kansas City has a lot of homework left to do; any of these prospects mentioned could be their favorite by the time opening night of the draft rolls around. The good news is that they now have a QB that they believe can lead their turnaround, and that's a huge hole that is now filled.
Steve Muench of Scouts, Inc. checked in with his thoughts on what they could do with the No. 1 pick:
Steve MuenchNFL Draft blog
"Texas A&M OT Luke Joeckel is the No. 1 player on our board right now, and if the Chiefs don't re-sign free-agent OT Branden Albert, then Joeckel will definitely be in play. He has ample experience at the highest level of college football and would be ready to step in immediately at left tackle. If Albert returns and Kansas City goes in another direction, bolstering the defense is a distinct possibility. Utah DT Star Lotulelei would fit at end in the Chiefs' 3-4 scheme -- assuming the heart condition that got him flagged at the combine isn't a long-term issues -- and while Florida's Sharrif Floyd has loads of talent, he's a better fit inside than as a 5-technique (DE) in that scheme."