Did you predict this outcome for the Chiefs? You could have made that prediction into cash on www.gamebookers.com. Then, the Chiefs pick would have at least meant something to you.
On a day where the Chiefs were expected to be smack dab in the middle of all the action, all they did was draft some dude named Jackson. I joked around about Scott Pioli napping and me hanging myself with all of my old Chiefs jerseys, but more than anything it was just a boring day for Chiefs fans. Especially after last year’s wild draft and the whirlwind offseason we’ve been through thus far. Roughly 25 minutes into the draft, the Chiefs picked Tyson Jackson. Afterward? They didn’t do jack, son.
Why were the Chiefs so inactive? My guess is that Pioli and coach Todd Haley feel this is a poor draft class. Or at least deeper than it is top heavy. They must have believed that trading up wouldn’t have been worth the cost. Look at the Broncos; they traded a 2010 first-rounder for the second coming of Mighty Mouse — 5-foot-nine-in-stripper-heels Alphonso Smith.
Sure, we could have moved up and drafted a guy like Connor Barwin, Eben Britton, Everette Brown or William Beatty in round two. But what would have been the cost of such a move? That 2010 second we got from the Falcons plus another pick. Why give up a second-rounder in a better draft plus another pick for a second-rounder in this weaker draft? Better be sure. In the end, I’m guessing the Pioli Trinity wasn’t sold enough on any particular player to move up via trade.
The one mistake that could haunt the Chiefs is not trading up to get Michael Crabtree. The player who I feel is the best player in this draft was still available at No. 10. That’s absurd. I would have sent Tyler Thigpen, next year’s first-rounder and a third to the Niners in a heartbeat in exchange for that pick. Who knows? Maybe there was just no way in hell the Niners were going to flush their good fortune down the toilet after Crabtree unexpectedly fell to them?
Other than that, I really didn’t see a “must have” prospect at any point, even though Eben Britton became very intriguing as the second round advanced and he was still available.
I’m guessing that Pioli and Co. are working the phones right now, and will be until the wee hours of the morning. Remember, Pioli and the rest of the Patriots brain trust got the big Randy Moss trade at like 4 AM between draft days one and two. At this point, teams are coming to terms with the fact that the draft will not address all of their holes. This will likely rev up the trade market one last time.
Also, teams like the Browns and Panthers made selections to replace superstars up for trade — Braylon Edwards and Julius Peppers, respectively. Don’t be shocked if a big name player gets moved in the next eight hours or so. Anquan Boldin or Peppers are two guys we should make inquiries about. Return man Roscoe Parrish is another.
I’m also getting the feeling that some team will trade a late-round draft pick (read sixth or seventh) for Michael Vick. It looks like he is going to be back in 2009, folks. After all, he has paid a bigger price to both the NFL and society than other guys who have received second chances (ahem, Chris Henry, Pacman Jones, etc…). It would be extremely hypocritical for the NFL to not let him play. There shouldn’t be double jeopardy for Vick. He went to prison, served a long NFL suspension and lost somewhere between $30-40 million. What did Pacman lose? His cool? A few wrestling matches? “Make it rain” cash? Some bullets?
Vick will meet with Tony Dungy soon. Apparently, Dungy and Vick are going to sit down and talk about getting Michael’s life back on track. I think this is the first step towards his reinstatement. With that reinstatement likely, Vick could become the ultimate Wildcat next season. Look, Pat White went in round two; is there anyone who thinks White has more Wildcat ability than Mike Vick? Even post-prison? I certainly don’t. Someone is probably going to cough up a late pick for this guy (he’s under contract with Atlanta), and it could pay off. What’s there to lose? Only play him 10 snaps or so a game and keep him on the tightest leash, no pun intended, you’ve ever seen. I’m sure he’ll willingly renegotiate his contract if it’s the only way to get a shot at redemption, and will be.
That being said, I doubt we go after Vick. It would be too big of a distraction too early in this new era. Look for a more established team like the Baltimore Ravens or Tennessee Titans to possibly pursue Vick. A team with coaching or veteran leadership and limited offensive firepower would make a lot of sense. Don’t rule out a team trying to turn things around quickly, though. I mean, I have no clue what the Broncos or Raiders might do next at this point.
As far as Tyson Jackson goes, look, it’s not a sexy pick. I remember thinking please don’t say Aaron Curry, only to be equally disappointed when I heard Jackson’s name announced. My disappointment was short lived, though. When looking back at Pioli’s past first-round defensive line choices — Richard Seymour, Ty Warren and Vincent Wilfork come to mind — one can’t help but recognize that our new GM knows how to evaluate 3-4 D-line talent.Pioli knew the potential of the other available top prospects on the board. He willingly passed on them in favor of T.Y. (apparently, that’s his nickname). That says something.
Pioli went on to compare Jackson to former No. 1 overall pick Russell Maryland, a player who Jimmy Johnson claimed made the Cowboys defense work. Others compare him to Chris Canty and Seymour. Simply put, if Jackson makes our new defense “work,” then he will be well worth the investment. Especially if he makes life easier on other defensive first-round investments like Derrick Johnson, ex-teammate Glenn Dorsey and Tamba Hali. I think he’s got a great shot at doing just that.
By the way, what’s up with us raiding Baton Rouge? Swamp Thing? We’re about to become the Swamp Things. We’ve picked three LSU Tigers in a row in the first round. I hope that connection improves or cohesiveness both on the field and in the locker room. Most importantly, I hope Dorsey and Jackson can pick up where the left off when they last played together, leading the Tigers to a National Championship. Pretty soon we’ll start playing that “Chinese Bandits” song and cheering “Geaux Tigers.”
I look for the Chiefs to draft C Antoine Caldwell, Alabama when their third-round pick comes up early tomorrow morning. I think he’s probably close to as good as guys like Mack, Unger and Wood, and would be a steal in the third round. Mel Kiper has him ranked 10th among available players, and we all know Rudy Niswanger needs to be replaced. I would also be ecstatic about us picking either guard Duke Robinson, Oklahoma or WR Louis Murphy, Florida.