2014 NFL Draft: Kansas City Chiefs Select Zach Fulton, G, Tennessee

by Ryan Jones on May 10th, 2014 at 3:36pm

ZachFulton

The Kansas City Chiefs helped address one of their biggest weaknesses with their first of two sixth round picks by selecting G Zach Fulton from Tennessee.

With guards Jon Asamoah and Geoff Schwartz leaving in free agency, the Chiefs were left with little depth on the interior of the offensive line. Fulton is a player that brings the experience of 40 starts in the SEC and at the very least will be able to backup both guard spots and push for a starting gig next to Rodney Hudson.

Fulton is the third straight offensive player drafted by GM John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid following RB De’Anthony Thomas and QB Aaron Murray. While he isn’t likely to see the field as much as Thomas, Fulton will contribute more than Murray, even if it’s only on special teams.

The Chiefs are schedule to have just one more pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, with the 200th overall selection later in the sixth round.

2014 NFL Draft: Kansas City Chiefs Select Aaron Murry, QB, Georgia

by Ryan Jones on May 10th, 2014 at 3:04pm

AaronMurray

The Kansas City Chiefs made a surprise pick with their fourth selection of the NFL Draft Saturday afternoon by choosing Georgia QB Aaron Murray. The former Bulldog will join a QB room that includes starter Alex Smith and backups Chase Daniel and Tyler Bray.

Murray is the perfect fit for the Chiefs offense, but to me seems like a luxury pick for a team that is working with a limited number of selections. If Smith wasn’t about to get a long-term extension, we would have seen the team focus on a quarterback earlier in the draft, so this is strictly a pick for depth.

After suffering a torn ACL in November of last year, Murray is expected to be ready for training camp. That’s where we’ll get to see if he will push Daniel or Bray off the roster, because the Chiefs will not keep four quarterback on the roster.

Daniel is certainly being paid well for a backup, but he also showed at the end of last season that he can run Andy Reid’s system. If the Chiefs want to save some money and feel comfortable with Murray’s knee and his grasp of the offense, they’ll go with the rookie and Bray behind Smith.

Wrapping up a fantastic four-year run at Georgia last year, Murray completed nearly 65 percent of his passes for 3,75 yards and 26 touchdowns with just nine interceptions. Murray is a lock to make the roster, now we just have to watch and see who the odd man out will be under center.

2014 NFL Draft: Kansas City Chiefs Select De’Anthony Thomas, RB, Oregon

by Ryan Jones on May 10th, 2014 at 12:47pm

DeAnthonyThomas

It took until the fourth round, but the Kansas City Chiefs finally delivered a much needed weapon for Alex Smith and the offense. GM John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid selected Oregon RB D’Anthony Thomas with the 24th pick of the fourth round (124 overall).

Thomas should immediately fill the void left when Dexter McCluster bolted for the Tennessee Titans in the offseason. The two players are almost identical in size (5’8″, 175), explosive and without a true position.

No matter if the Chiefs end up listing Thomas as a running back or receiver, he will be used all over the field. And, maybe more importantly, special teams coach Dave Toub can pencil the rookie in as his kick and punt returner.

During his final season with the Ducks, Thomas finished with a whopping 1,353 all-purpose yards despite missing three games due to injury. He rushed for 594 yards on 96 carries and eight touchdowns. Thomas also caught 22 passes for 246 yards and a touchdown.

The Chiefs still have three picks left on the final day of the draft. Their next selection will be in the fifth round, followed by two sixth round picks.

2014 NFL Draft: Kansas City Chiefs Select Phillip Gaines, CB, Rice

by Ryan Jones on May 9th, 2014 at 10:29pm

PhillipGaines

The Kansas City Chiefs had to wait a while Friday night before making a selection and when they did, they stayed on the defensive side of the ball. With the 87th overall pick, they chose CB Phillip Gaines from Rice.

Gaines brings blazing speed to Kansas City, as he was clocked at 4.38 in the 40 yard dash at the scouting combine. He also brings a physicality that defensive coordinator Bob Sutton will love. The defensive back told reporters Friday night that he was in press “80 percent of the time” last season.

In addition to worrying about Gaines playing against lesser competition at Rice, he also dealt with multiple injuries early in his career. To his credit he finished his college career strong by starting the final 35 games. Overall, Gaines played in 52 games during his five years at rice with 40 starts and racked up 134 tackles, two sacks, four interceptions, 38 PBUs (school record), three fumble recoveries and a forced fumble.

With Brandon Flowers, Sean Smith and Marcus Cooper the only returning starters at cornerback for the Chiefs, Gaines will have a chance to earn significant playing time in training camp. Could also get a look at safety as the team tries to find a running mate for Eric Berry.

The Chiefs next pick is the 24th in the fourth round (124 overall).

2014 NFL Draft: Kansas City Chiefs Select Dee Ford, DE/LB, Auburn

by Ryan Jones on May 8th, 2014 at 11:50pm

DeeFord

There was plenty of drama leading up to the Kansas City Chiefs first round pick on Thursday night. Johnny Manziel was falling and the exciting quarterback was quickly approaching No. 23, where the Chiefs were sitting, and reportedly interested.

Then the Cleveland Browns jumped up and grabbed the 22nd pick to take the former Texas A&M star and that meant the decision was easy for Chiefs head coach Andy Reid and GM John Dorsey: take the highest rated player playing up front.

As we noted in our mock draft, both the coach and GM have worked in front offices that build their teams through the offensive and defensive lines. So that meant the pick was Dee Ford, a DE/LB from Auburn that will give the Kansas City defense one more way to try and get to the quarterback in 2014.

Ford was immediately tabbed as the replacement for LB Tamba Hali, but it’s way too early to punch the Pro Bowler’s ticket out of town. There’s no reason Hali, Ford and Justin Houston can’t all be on the field together at the same time.

Obviously after next season this pick could afford the Chiefs to move on from Hali’s salary, but right now defensive coordinator Bob Sutton will find ways to use all three to try and find a way back into the playoffs. Considering the team’s pass rush was non-existent down the stretch last season, Ford is a perfect addition, something that isn’t lost on Dorsey.

“He has a unique ability to rush the passer, and in today’s National Football League, with the way the game has increased in speed, it gives you another pass-rushing component,” Dorsey told reporters Thursday night. “Everybody knows when you can rush the passer, it makes the back seven look a little bit better.”

That last part addresses the worry of some about the Chiefs passing up on a safety or cornerback. After all, if a defense can get find way to get pressure on the quarterback with four, everyone else will look better.

Ford will obviously need to get on the field, something he wasn’t able to always do during his time at Auburn. He suffered a season-ednding injury in 2011 and then missed three games over the next two seasons. Ford also was unable to participate at the combine, though he was able to workout at a pro day just two weeks later.

As we head into the second round, the Chiefs don’t currently own a pick after sending that selection to the San Francisco 49ers for Alex Smith.

2014 KC Chiefs Blog 7 Round Mock Draft

by Ryan Jones on May 6th, 2014 at 11:00am

A year after the Kansas City Chiefs were the ones dictating which way the NFL Draft would go by owning the top pick, they will be waiting to see what everyone else is doing in front of them before making their selection with the 23rd pick.

With no second round pick (sent to San Francisco in the Alex Smith trade), they could be waiting even longer before they get to make a second selection.

Of course, mock drafts are mostly just good for being mocked after the fact since none of us have any idea how things are going to shake out. For all we know, GM John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid could end up moving all over the draft board to try and recoup that second rounder.

The one thing the Chiefs are going to need to do if they are going to get back to the playoffs is put together a draft class that performs on the field. That’s something that was overlooked last season, with just Eric Fisher and Knile Davis contributing throughout the year.

Here is my best guess at the type of players the Chiefs will target and for what it’s worth, 23 of the 24 players I’ve mocked over the last three years are still in the league. We’ll start things off with a pick that likely wouldn’t be very popular in Kansas City.

1. Ra’Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota

“But… the Chiefs have to take a wide receiver!”

Do they?

Before taking Fisher first overall last season, Dorsey was part of a front office with the Green Bay Packers that selected a defensive or offensive lineman every year from 2009-12 in the first round. Reid had the same line of thinking with the Philadelphia Eagles, bringing in a lineman in the first round his final three years running the show.

Obviously that doesn’t mean the Chiefs will add some beef along either line in the first round, but it should tell you they both believe in building their teams with strength up front. And it doesn’t get much more impressive for a big man than Hageman.

If you think Dontari Poe was a freak, you’ll dig what the big man from Minnesota can do.

Poe had a better 40 (4.98 to 5.02) and more reps on the bench (44 to 32), but Hageman had a better vertical jump, broad jump, 3 cone drill and 20 yard shuttle. The former tight end also has bigger hands and longer arms that Poe, though the Chiefs defensive anchor out weighs Hageman by a good 35 pounds.

None of this means he’ll end up being the player Poe has worked himself into, but getting these two guys on the line together would give offensive lines fits. Hageman also would be a huge addition even if it just allowed Poe to take less punishment during the season.

If Dorsey and Reid decide to focus on the other side of the line instead, I think Xavier Su’a Filo from UCLA would be the perfect choice. A guy that come step in immediately and start, allowing the Chiefs to head into training camp with their line set.

Check out the rest of the picks

Chiefs Bring Back WR Kyle Williams

by Ryan Jones on April 21st, 2014 at 6:27pm

The Kansas City Chiefs claimed WR Kyle Williams from the San Francisco 49ers last November and hoped he would give a boost to the team an immediate boost on offense and special teams.

Williams quickly got up to speed with the Chiefs offense and special teams coach Dave Toub was already talking about using his speed on returns. But less than 1o days later his season was ended by a torn ACL that landed him on injured reserve, potentially ending his Chiefs career soon after it started.

On the day they kicked off their offseason program, the Chiefs announced the wide receiver’s time in Kansas City would be extended. The free agent inked a one-year deal with the Chiefs as he attempts to come back from the knee injury.

There’s no word yet on when Williams might be able to get back on the field, but right now the roster lacks explosiveness at wide receiver and in the return game. So even with the rookies added next month, there should be room for Williams to compete for time if he can put a helmet on some time during training camp.

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Surprising Name For Chiefs

by Ryan Jones on April 10th, 2014 at 11:21pm

Even though the Kansas City Chiefs have plenty of holes they need to fill in next month’s draft, it seems like it would be an upset if GM John Dorsey doesn’t get a wide receiver for QB Alex Smith.

And there are plenty that have been predicted to find their way to Kansas City, from USC’s Marquise Lee to LSU’s Odell Beckham Jr. to Florida State’s Kelvin Benjamin and several others that could work their way into the discussion. Very simply, there are a lot of guys that could be in play and few that would surprise.

In his latest mock draft, ESPN’s Todd McShay managed to find a guy that would go well beyond surprise.

23. Kansas City Chiefs: Cody Latimer, WR, Indiana

This is the big surprise pick of the first round. He might not go off the board quite this early, but I was blown away by his game when I finally got to study his tape recently. He does a great job of getting off the press, has extremely reliable hands and is a threat after the catch — three things that make him a perfect fit for a West Coast-style offense. He is dealing with a foot injury but his healing is ahead of schedule, and he recently ran in the 4.4-range at 6-foot-2, 215 pounds. FSU’s Kelvin Benjamin is another possibility here if the Chiefs are looking to go in a different direction at receiver.

If Latimer can prove to be healthy (he still couldn’t participate in drills at his pro day), he will continue to rise up draft boards. But making his way all the way to 23 is a bit too big of a jump in my mind.

With the Denver Broncos putting on a show this offseason, Dorsey and the Chiefs need to hit on their first round pick. Latimer has a ton of ability and could turn out to be a big time player, but this isn’t an offense that can afford to wait and see if he will develop.

McShay’s mock has two rounds of picks and if you’re curious, he is projecting WR Jordan Matthews from Vanderbilt to the San Francisco 49ers with the pick acquired in the Smith trade.

Eric Fisher Will Move To Left Tackle

by Ryan Jones on March 25th, 2014 at 7:32am

It’s not often we get much good information from the NFL owners meetings. Usually we have to chew on typical cliches about working to get better for next season, but Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid addressed a major question: Who will take over for Branden Albert at left tackle?EricFisherChiefs

The Chiefs aren’t long on options, with either Eric Fisher or Donald Stephenson the candidates to protect QB Alex Smith’s blindside. And it appears Kansas City is ready to give that responsibility to last year’s No. 1 overall pick.

In his rookie campaign, Fisher played exclusively on the right side after handling the left side at Central Michigan. The switch clearly bothered him, as he struggled mightily early and often. Fisher showed resolve and bounced back to show huge improvement as the season rolled along.

Stephenson filled in on both sides and it was his impressive showing filling in for Albert that made this a discussion at all. Sure, Fisher was the higher pick, but might the Chiefs consider letting Stephenson earn the bigger job?

For now, Reid is read to open camp with Fisher as his left tackle. Assuming he can get back to the comfort level he had while in college and build on his rookie season, the Chiefs should be set on the left side for the foreseeable future.

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Trade For Chiefs?

by Ryan Jones on March 24th, 2014 at 7:54am

Xavier SuaFilo

The Kansas City Chiefs had a long list of needs heading into free agency and after losing far more than they’ve brought back, that list is even longer.

The area hit the hardest is the offensive line, where three linemen (including two starters) have bolted. While last year’s first overall pick Eric Fisher is set to step in for Branden Albert at tackle, there is a big question mark at guard, where starter Geoff Schwartz and Jon Asamoah both hit the road.

Would the problems facing the Chiefs offensive line push GM John Dorsey to not only draft a guard, but actually trade up for one? SB Nation’s Matthew Fairburn seems to think so, as he projects the Chiefs will strike a deal with the Baltimore Ravens:

17. TRADE – Kansas City Chiefs (via Baltimore Ravens) – Xavier Su’a-Filo, OG, UCLA

Free agency wasn’t kind to Kansas City’s offensive line. The Chiefs now need multiple upgrades at offensive guard. With the Jets and Dolphins both possibly looking for offensive guards, the Chiefs may need to trade up to address the need. Xavier Su’a-Filo is the best guard in this class and worth trading up for. He moves well in space and has a lot of functional strength for the position.

I agree that Su’a-Filo is worth trading up for, but don’t think the Chiefs are the team to do it. Especially in this scenario, because LSU’s Odell Beckham Jr. is still on the board and it’s hard to imagine Kansas City passing on the dynamic receiver.

The Chiefs will need to do some major work on the offensive line, but using their first round pick — plus the assets it would take to get a deal done — to do it doesn’t seem like a fit.

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