Scott Pioli is Pretty Good at Football (also: Aldon Smith)


There have been a pair of magnificent anecdotes released about GM Scott Pioli over the past two days across the Kansas City Chiefs blogosphere, starting with magnificent bastard Joel Thorman’s  interview with Pioli himself (instant classic), and culminating in “Chiefs Live!”‘s typical, amazing analysis on the Chiefs’ own website.

During Thorman’s interview with Pioli, a thought came back to define the conversation time and time again, a conversation focused almost entirely around researching draft prospects:

“[Y]ou can get more insight into who someone is when they’re not being watched.”

A clever part of analyzing players goes beyond game tape, and the raving reviews of their coaches.  Sometimes you’ve got to go a bit deeper, and one of the ways Pioli does that is by tracking down people in the organization that are in constant contact with the players whom nobody expects will be getting visits from GMs — veritable “Carl the Janitors,” if you will.  All sorts of people work at the facilities that prospects regular every day, and these people can be probed for insight into who a prospect really is.

If you were reading that as the agent of a Draft prospect, you might consider calling up your client’s facilities and begging everybody working there — all the way down to the custodians — to espouse nothing but praise, in case some GM with Pioli’s philosophy comes calling. (I’m willing to bet some janitors are going to get an unexpected bonus this spring from agents, thanks to Pioli!)

So maybe, let’s just say, Missouri OLB Aldon Smith’s agent does that exact thing once the Chiefs bring him in for a visit

It doesn’t matter.  Pioli’s already outsmarted you — by a full year.  According to MU football announcer Mike Kelley, Pioli had already probed a “Carl the Janitor” type about Aldon Smith: 2010 Draft prospect Sean Witherspoon of Mizzou, Aldon’s teammate.  A year ago, during the 2010 draft season.

Say what you will about Pioli, but the man does his due dilligence.  And he does it well before you prepared for it.

A little chitchat about Aldon Smith after the jump.  Because I love this guy.

There was no way for Pioli to know back in 2010 that Aldon Smith would vault up big boards until he ended up being a prospect likely to go in the top half of the first round. 

Everybody loves the potential in Aldon Smith.  The physicality is tremendous.  He’s huge.  He’s fast.  He is silly athletic.  He doesn’t like you.  He’s got tremendous upside.  He’s local. What’s not to love?

As a result, Aldon Smith is slated to go well before the Chiefs pick at #21.  Most likely landing spots would be with the Houston Texans at #11, Minnesota Vikings at #12, Detroit Lions at #13, St. Louis Rams at #14, New England Patriots at #17, San Diego Chargers at #18, or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at #20.

So what would it take to jump these folks, in case Pioli was so inclined?  As always, I turn to the trade value chart that many teams base their trades around.

Here are what the following selections, according to the trade value chart, are “worth”:

#10: 1,300 points
#11: 1,250
#12: 1,200
#13: 1,150
#14: 1,100
#15: 1,050
#16: 1,000
#17: 950
#18: 900
#19: 850
#20: 800
#21: 750

Keep in mind, with no new CBA yet, we can’t trade players or future draft picks (2012 or beyond). So here are the value of the picks the Chiefs have now:

#21 (1st): 750 points
#55 (2nd): 350
#86 (3rd): 160
#118 (4th): 58
#135 (5th): 38.5
#140 (5th): 36
#199 (6th): 11.8
#223 (7th): 2.3

So, understanding that the Chiefs could pull all sorts of tricks, like trading picks in later rounds, here’s roughly what it would take to move up with just what we see here.

To move to #19 to jump the Bucs: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Giants, plus forfeit a combo of our 4th and one of our 5ths.

To move to #17 to jump the Chargers: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Patriots, plus forfeit a combo of our 3rd with one of our 5ths.

To move to #16 to jump the Patriots: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Jaguars, plus forfeit a combo of our 3rd, our 4th, and one of our 5ths.

To move to #13 to jump the Rams: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Lions, plus forfeit a combo of our 2nd and our 4th.

To move to #12 to jump the Lions: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Vikings, plus forfeit a combo of our 2nd, our 4th, and one of our 5ths.

To move to #11 to jump the Vikings: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Texans, plus forfeit a combo of our 2nd and our 3rd.

To move to #10 to jump the Texans: We’d have to trade 1sts with the Redskins, plus forfeit a combo of our 2nd, our third, and one of our 5ths.

Food for thought.