Kansas City Chiefs 2012 NFL Draft Grades
The Kansas City Chiefs went from a wild card playoff team in 2010 to the bottom of the AFC West in 2011. The major difference? A horrible lack of depth exposed by an incredibly unlucky string of injuries.
Kansas City lost their starting tight end, running back and safety early, and ended up losing starting quarterback Matt Cassel later in the year, as well.
Clearly, they had to build some depth in this year’s draft. Let’s see how they did as we grade their 2012 selections:
Round 1 (Pick 11) - Dontari Poe, NT, Memphis
Poe is a beast, plain and simple. He wasn’t overly productive in college, but stats don’t tell the whole story. He’s a freak in terms of size and athleticism for the position, and he should be able to stamp down the middle of KC’s 3-4 for years to come.
Round 2 (Pick 44) – Jeff Allen, OT, Illinois
Allen was a highly rated offensive tackle and a solid value pick here in the second round. He excels in pass protection, although he’s probably better suited for guard at the next level due to his size.
Round 3 (Pick 74) – Donald Stephenson, OT, Oklahoma
He’s a bit of a project, but as it stands he has the size and athleticism to step in and play tackle at the next level. He needs to get stronger and more consistent, but he has a future on the Chiefs’ offensive line, to be sure. Quite a value pick in the third.
Round 4 (Pick 107) – Devon Wylie, WR, Fresno State
Dwayne Bowe still isn’t under contract and Jonathan Baldwin hasn’t shown the goods yet, so adding another talented receiver was a good move. Wylie is a small guy, but he can dominate the slot with exceptional speed and burst.
Round 5 (Pick 146) – DeQuan Menzie, CB, Alabama
KC’s corners are locked-in, but they certainly could use some depth for their secondary. Menzie is an athletic play-maker with good size and instincts. He’ll make the final roster.
Round 6 (Pick 182) – Cyrus Gray, RB, Texas A&M
Jamaal Charles and Peyton Hillis both have health issues stemming from last season, so adding another running back was smart. Gray is a shifty runner who can make people miss. He’ll offer KC a change of pace back and is insurance if either of the top two guys go down again.
Round 7 (Pick 218) – Jerome Long, DT, San Diego State
Long probably should have gone undrafted, but he’s a hard-nosed defensive lineman with good size and strength. He brings needed depth for the line, but he’s no lock to make it through final cuts.
Round 7 (Pick 238) – Junior Hemingway, WR, Michigan
Hemingway has good size and play-making ability and is a quality add to end the draft, as KC still has some questions at wide receiver. He’ll add solid depth and could develop into a contributor down the road.
Getting a potential beast nose tackle in Poe was a mammoth pick – pun intended. It could backfire, but with the defensive-minded Romeo Crennel guiding this team, I like Poe’s chances of paying off in a big way. They then landed two stud offensive linemen who both project well down the road, while Allen could start right away at guard. I really like Cyrus Gray as a change of pace back out of the back-field, and they added some nice depth across the board.
Eric Berry went down early in 2011 and they were hurting at safety. They could have brought in another young safety for depth. It was a thin position in this year’s draft, though, so that can slide. Overall, it was a solid draft.
Overall Grade: B