As we all sit here a mere two days away from the start of the 2011 NFL Draft, waiting in anxious anticipation of Scott Pioli’s round-by-round selections, hoping to cheer each brilliant pick (because it’s who we just knew had to be picked) and dreading the prospect of having to curse at any (because we simply can’t believe that /admit that /understand how Pioli could be so clueless), I thought it mind be fun to throw out another mock draft for the Chiefs. I mean, why not?
The rules for this one are a little different than what we’ve been doing here at AA the past few weeks. Instead of following DraftTek’s big board and using Merlin’s rules about who can be picked when, I decided to put something together based more along the lines of what I’ll call a general “draft experts consensus” of where players are expected to fall, more or less. Several of these names you’ll be familiar with from my previous foray in mock drafting, the main difference being now a few are simply resorted into the rounds where I believe we would be best advised to take them.
In addition to complimenting my brilliant selections, I also invite anyone and everyone to post their own Chiefs mock in the comments section with the understanding that others may challenge them on any reasonable grounds. Plausible pick swap/trade ideas are also welcome.
Ready on the left, ready on the right, ready on the firing line, skeet loaded, and PULL!
1) Phil Taylor, Baylor, NT.
The perfect storm of Chiefs need, supply & demand, ideal physique, proven ability, upside, Todd Haley’s conditioning regimen, and Romeo Crennel’s coaching/development skills make Phil Taylor both the smartest and safest 1st round bet of all – the definitive “first round must have.” The Chiefs fill a glaring need at NT for years to come and are left free to focus on other needs at positions where there is much greater depth and better value in later rounds.
Player I might be tempted to change my pick for if still available? Jake Locker
2) Randall Cobb, Ky, WR/QB/KR/PR/PH.
Randall Cobb’s combination of versatility, playmaking talents, dedication, leadership, and willingness to block could not better fit Scott Pioli’s notions of everything a pro wide receiver ought to be. The fact that Cobb can come in and not just fill a huge team need but give us depth and real weaponry on offense, plus, immediately contribute in multiple ways on special teams makes him an exceptional 2nd round choice for the Chiefs.
Player I might be tempted to change my pick for if still available? Derrek Sherrod
3) Dontay Moch, Nev, OLB.
With Tamba Hali’s contract status in limbo and the need to (someday!) replace Mr. Intangibles, Scott Pioli must be thinking about identifying someone in this draft, fairly early I would assume, who can at least sustain (should Hali end up being traded), but hopefully improve the Chiefs pass-rushing threat. Moch, with his track star speed, can come in and do just and otherwise looks to have enough talent and upside to develop into an every down OLB.
Player I might be tempted to change my pick for if still available? Rodney Hudson
4) DeMarcus Love, Ark, G / OT backup
DeMarcus Love’s production at LT dropped off in his senior year but as a 4th round prospect, it’s hard to overlook his 4 years experience, his leadership, his frame, his ability to provide depth at multiple positions, and his likely ability to make an immediate impact on special teams. DeMarcus Love is a dedicated player with a ton of upside who gives us a lot of options, can improve our short yardage game immediately at the guard position and I believe eventually start for the Chiefs.
Player I might be tempted to change my pick for if still available? Stefen Wisniewski
5) A) Cecil Shorts, III, Mt. Union, WR
With Shorts, our need for a deep threat playmaker is filled. His willingness to block and his ability to shed blockers for YAC along with his fearlessness across the middle are just layered icings on the cake. Cecil Shorts can and should also contribute immediately on special teams as a speedy downfield blocker.
B) Nathan Enderle, Idaho, QB
Highly coachable kid out of a pro style offense with great physicals, good arm strength, accurate touch, good decision-making skills, and considerable upside. Luckily for the Chiefs, his weak Combine showing lowered his stock. The Chiefs benefit from that fall and land a 5th round value pick who provides the Chiefs with a solid backup and possible future starter at QB.
Player in the 5th round that I might change either pick for if still available? Chris Conte
6) Harrison Smith, ND, S/LB
34 starts for the Irish, with good coverage skills, provides the Chiefs with depth at multiple positions on D and can come in as a starter on special teams. A very solid and safe 6th round value pick.
Player I might change my pick for if still available? None, unless I passed on either Nathan Enderle or Cecil Shorts in the 5th round.
7) Ryan Pugh, Auburn, C
Let’s dispel a myth right now. There is no rule or statistical argument that says you must fill your OL positions with early round selections or that any interior lineman taken after the 3rd round is destined for a backup role only. Pugh is a smart, under-the-radar, team-first type player, who served a key role in what some would say was one of the best (I would probably argue the best) offense in all of college football last year. This first team, all-SEC center is significantly bigger and a lot younger than the Chiefs current center, Casey Weigmann. Pugh, as a 7th round selection, is a guy with a ton of high caliber experience facing the best of the best college defenses who adds much needed size and youth to our interior line and somebody who I think has real potential to step up and prove all of his overlookers foolish.
Player I might change my pick for if still available? Tyrod Taylor