Grading the draft: Kansas City Chiefs

With the Dick Vermiel era quickly coming to a close in Kansas City, the Chiefs had one last opportunity to replenish their roster. Already stocked with offensive talent, the teams pre-draft trade for Patrick Surtain might just be enough to propel the Chiefs into a playoff spot. Still, with a defense that is short on talent, playmakers were desperately needed on the front seven. 

When Texas linebacker Derrick Johnson, considered by many the premier defensive payer in this draft, fell to the 15th spot the Chiefs wasted no time selecting him. Johnson is an athletic playmaker whose strength lies in his pursuit and pass cover skills. He was the player the franchise wanted since the Senior Bowl and expect Johnson to be an immediate starter. Dustin Colquitt became one of very few punters in recent history to be drafted during the first day. The former Volunteer should solidify the Chiefs kicking game and field position. Kansas City began the second day of the draft much as they began the first day, with incredible value. Florida State receiver Craphonso Thorpe had first round talent but a a slow recovery from an injury which occured during his junior season caused his to slide down draft boards. Thorpe has the skills to develop into a starter for the team when his leg injuries heal. Illinois State linebacker Boomer Grigsby is a fiery competitor that may find a home on special teams. He has the versatility to be used at either middle or outside linebacker and the skills to develop into a three down defender.  Miami of Ohio cornerback Alphonso Hodge could be the teams nickel back in time. Hodge has outstanding size/speed numbers yet rarely plays to them and must develop a more consistent game.  Former Stanford defensive tackle Will Svitek was drafted by the team to play offensive tackle. A likely candidate for the teams practice squad Svitek has the build of a left tackle. Baylor defensive end Khari Long may is best suited as a pass rush linebacker or a third down specialist who could also be used in zone blitz situations. Jeremy Parquet is a solid offensive tackle with great upside but questionable work ethic. An off-season in an NFL environment will help determine if Parquet has the desire to succeed in the NFL. James Killian of Tulsa offers prototypical size at quarterback but he must improve his arm strength.

Kansas City's draft was characterized by great value and players with terrific upside potential.  Derrick Johnson should impact the defense right out of the gate and Thorpe could so the same by his second year in the league.  Their later round choices all have the potential to contribute in the NFL.

RD  Pick Player Pos School
1   15 (15)   Derrick Johnson *   OLB   Texas  
3   36 (99)   Dustin Colquitt *   P   Tennessee  
4   15 (116)   Craphonso Thorpe *   WR   Florida State  
5   2 (138)   James 'Boomer' Grigsby   MLB   Illinois State  
5   11 (147)   Alphonso Hodge   CB   Miami (Oh)  
6   13 (187)   Will Svitek   OG   Stanford  
6   25 (199)   Khari Long   DE   Baylor  
7   15 (229)   James Kilian   QB   Tulsa  
7   24 (238)   Jeremy Parquet *   OT   Southern Miss  

UDFA Signings: TE Willie Walden, RB Sam Gado, CB Gabriel Helms, LB Kris Griffen, WR Nathanial Curry, DT Arrion Dixon, DE Zach Ville, CB Justin Perkins, DT Darius Jones, C Mike Johnson

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