The 2013 NFL Draft is over and done with. Fan bases of teams all across the country are abuzz with renewed optimism because of the new pieces that will help their team make a leap to the next level.
1) The Kansas City Chiefs get a draft grade of….C+
T Eric Fisher is a guy who scouts think can be the next Joe Thomas. Thomas was the third overall pick in the 2007 draft out of Wisconsin and has played in the Pro Bowl every year in the league.
Head coach Andy Reid and GM John Dorsey are gambling, slightly, on the upside of Fisher, which is superior to that of their other option at No. 1 overall, Texas A&M left tackle Luke Joeckel, who was picked second overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
According to Reid, Fisher is a better fit athletically for his West Coast offense, and has a little nastier demeanor on the field than the technician from College Station.
The Chiefs didn’t have a pick in the second round (because of the Alex Smith trade) and thus missed out on the chance to add a quality player in one of the best spots of value. This draft pool wasn’t top-heavy at all, but there will be a lot of starters found in the middle rounds.
IF Kansas City would have been able to pull off that trade with Miami for LT Branden Albert, they would have – likely – had a better draft grade by simply adding a good pick in round two.
2) Instead, the Chiefs had to wait until round three to pick again, and at No. 63 overall they selected Cincinnati tight end Travis Kelce.
Kelce is a good athlete with prototypical tight end size. He’s not a blazer, but he’s fast enough that the Bearcats used him as the quarterback in their “wildcat” package.
What Kelce does do well is run block, and provides a very large catching radius for his quarterback to look at in the middle of the field.
Chiefs fans should know, however, that he was once suspended for an entire season at Cincinnati for violating an unspecified team rule.
3) With a second pick in round three, the Chiefs rolled the dice big time on Arkansas RB Knile Davis.
Davis is some kind of physical specimen. He’s 6 feet tall and weighs 230 pounds but runs a blazing 4.35 forty yard dash. His combination of size and breakaway speed is somewhat reminiscent of ex-Kansas City RB Larry Johnson.
- 2010: 1,322 yards (6.5 ypc), 13 TD
- 2011: Injured for season due to broken ankle
- 2012: 377 yards (3.4 ypc), 3 TD
Obviously, Davis did not find the same level of success after his 2011 injury, but no one on Arkansas’ dumpster fire of a team in 2012 had much success. To some degree, his 2012 season needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
Davis, however, has legitimate issues surrounding his ability to stay healthy and, more importantly, hang on to the football. He fumbled 12 times in three seasons at Arkansas. That’s wholly unacceptable.
There is no doubting, though, that Davis passes the eyeball and stopwatch test. If the Chiefs get lucky and he rediscovers the ability he displayed as a dynamite sophomore in 2010, Kansas City has a perennial 1,000-yard rusher backing up Jamaal Charles.
4) The Chiefs picks in rounds four and five were perhaps my favorite of their entire draft.
At pick No. 99 in the fourth round, the Chiefs selected ILB Nico Johnson from Alabama.
This young man is more than likely going to be a starter next to Derrick Johnson as a rookie. Anytime you can find that type of value (a starter) in the fourth round, it’s a home run pick.
At pick No. 134 in the fifth round, the Chiefs selected DB Sanders Commings from Georgia.
Commings has fantastic size and very good cover skills. He played cornerback for Mark Richt at Georgia but may have a future in the NFL as a free safety responsible for roaming the back end of the secondary.
At Georgia he picked off eight passes in his career, but was not known as a great tackler or physical player.
He does, however, come from an outstanding program and gives the Chiefs another big body in the secondary to help cover the large targets on the perimeter roaming the AFC West (including former Mizzou great and current San Diego Charger wideout, Danario Alexander).
The Chiefs got good value on Comings in the fifth round because in today’s NFL, defenses almost always have five or more defensive backs on the field. This guy has starter potential long-term and the positional versatility to play corner or safety.