The signings of Casey Weigmann and Ryan Lilja have me thinking. Are the Chiefs mostly finished rebuilding their offensive line?
Scott Pioli said at the NFL Combine that the offensive line was a priority but not necessarily THE priority. That was the comment that convinced me that there was no way the Chiefs would take an offensive lineman in the first round. Now that the Chiefs have added two new lineman, I am thinking Pioli may be about finished up front.
The signings of Weigmann and Lilja all but confirms that there is no way the Chiefs are moving Albert out of his LT position. Weigmann has a decent shot to be the starting center and Lilja will obviously fill the right guard position. I think the Chiefs like O’Callahan and I do not see them replacing him at RT with Albert and drafting a LT.
(More after the jump)
If I am right then the Chiefs offensive line looks like this:
Albert, Waters, Weigmann, Lilja, O’Callahan
I am totally OK with this lineup. I do have some concerns about Weigmann due to his age but I think this very well could be the Chiefs starting offensive line next season.
Now I am not saying the Chiefs aren’t going to draft an offensive lineman at all in this draft but I am almost convinced that they will not take one before the 3rd round.
Waters will eventually need to be replaced and the Chiefs still need a long term C but the moves they have made this offseason could hold them over for another year. I could see the Chiefs taking a project C in the 3rd or 4th round, with the plan being to ride Waters until next year when they will draft his replacement.
This opens up a world of possibilities for the Chiefs in the draft. If they feel their offensive line is set, they can use their first 3 picks in the first 51 selections to address needs we have seen them ignore thus far this offseason.
Think about it. Before free agency I would have said the Chiefs needed to address C, G, MLB, SS and WR.
Center and guard have been dealt with. Shaun Smith was brought in as the roster’s only true NT. Chambers was resigned at WR and Jerhemy Urban was brought in for depth. That leaves safety and linebacker that have not been touched. What players have a decent chance to be available when the Chiefs pick at #5? Berry the safety and McClain the linebacker.
All of this leads me to believe that the Chiefs will make one more major acquisition at NT, WR, MLB or S. I’d put money on WR or NT. Receiver because they already tried to acquire Anquan Boldin via trade and NT because I am not sure if they think Smith can be the starter or not. It isn’t out of the realm of possibility that Crennel thinks that a NT platoon of Smith and Edwards could work. If that is the case, then the Chiefs may be done adding defensive tackles.
There are no guarantees in the draft. There is no way to tell if the players you are targeting are going to be available. Teams make so many draft day deals that it is never certain the guy you want will be there when your number is called. That being said, I think the Chiefs first 3 picks will be used on a safety, linebacker and a WR or NT depending on their free agency moves the rest of the way. Also, don’t be surprised if the Chiefs take a CB early. The way teams are throwing these days, you can never have too many great cornerbacks and the Chiefs have been scouting a lot of them.
What do you think, Addicts? Are the Chiefs finished making major offensive line acquisitions? What have you learned from the team’s moves thus far that influences how you think they will draft with picks 1, 2A and 2B?