The off-season has been rife with debate regarding the Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback situation. Since before the Chiefs’ head coach Andy Reid and general manager John Dorsey gave up a 2013 second round pick and a 2014 conditional pick for former San Francisco 49er signal caller Alex Smith, fans have debated who would be calling the plays from scrimmage for the Chiefs this season. At this point, I think we can all be pretty certain that Alex Smith is the undisputed starting quarterback of the Chiefs.
Once Reid and Dorsey had their starting QB, they made one of the more questionable moves of the off-season and signed backup quarterback Chase Daniel to a three year contract worth around $10 million. It seems most fans would have preferred to save the cap space and drafted a rookie to compete for that second slot on the depth chart. However, if you look at Alex Smith’s injury history, that line of thinking is a double edged sword. Although Smith played all 16 games in 2011, he went out in week 10 last season with a concussion, so signing a solid backup wasn’t a bad move.
In addition to Smith and Daniel, Ricky Stanzi and Alex Tanney are also on the squad. Stanzi, a guy who many fans thought should have been given a chance in seasons past, is barely hanging on and hasn’t been able to start even when the Chiefs were at their worst and other quarterbacks like Tyler Palko were given the nod. Tanney, known around “Chiefs Kingdom” as “Trickshot,” is a novelty who gained his fame from a YouTube video and spent his rookie season on injured reserve after hurting his hand in his one preseason appearance last season. Neither QB is a favorite to remain on the Chiefs’ roster by the opening Sunday at Jacksonville.
Does all this mean the Chiefs are out of the quarterback market when it comes to the draft? I say no. In fact, I’m willing to bet they take a quarterback with one of their two third round picks.
Why, you ask? You only need to look as far as the coach. Reid is a quarterback guy. He’s famous (some would say infamous) for drafting a mid-round QB and then trading him off for more than he’s worth a year or two down the road. Kevin Kolb anyone? Plus, I guarantee you if Reid had spent another season with the Philadelphia Eagles, Nick Foles would have been shipped off to another team and Philly would have been a couple of draft picks richer.
Since Reid and Dorsey aren’t “married” to either of the potential third string QB’s and could potentially draft their own guy, who would it be? Would they go after a big name QB in the first two days, or wait until day three and bring in some no name from a small school? It’s tough to say either way. Dorsey has repeated his “best player available” mantra since coming to the BBQ city, so who knows how the chips will fall. For the sake of argument, I’ve taken a look at some QBs who could fit this mold and wear Chiefs’ red and gold this season. I’ve broken these prospects down into three categories: Top Tier, Most Likely Mid-Rounders and Bottom of the Barrel.
These are the top college prospects I believe will go in the first and second rounds of the draft.
#1 Geno Smith – West Virginia
I’m not even going there. It’s not going to happen. You should all just accept it and move on.
#2 Matt Barkley – University of Southern California
Matt is considered by most experts to be the second best quarterback prospect in the draft. Though his senior season wasn’t quite what everyone thought it would be, he’s not a horrible quarterback. However, I don’t see Matt surviving very far into the second round if he even makes it out of the first. I wouldn’t count on the Chiefs having another USC alum at QB anytime soon.
#3 EJ Manuel – Florida State University
Manuel has kind of come out of nowhere and risen up many draft boards. His stats were respectable during his senior season, throwing for 3,392 yards with a 68 percent completion percentage. He threw for 23 TDs and was picked off 10 times. Perhaps more importantly, he led his team to an 11-2 record and then a convincing 31-10 win in the Orange Bowl against Northern Illinois. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t bet on Manuel going too far past the beginning of the second round so don’t expect Reid and Dorsey to call his number on day one or day two.
#4 Tyler Bray – Tennessee
Of all the QB’s in the Top Tier category, I would most like to see Tyler in a Chiefs’ uniform next season. I’ve watched some tape on him, and though he is risky at times (as evidenced by his 59 percent completion percentage and 12 picks last season) he has a nice deep ball and can find the end zone. He threw for over 3,600 yards and 34 touchdowns. Granted, he was throwing to one of the top rated receivers entering the draft this year, but I think he could be a really good NFL QB with some coaching. If the Chiefs are able to get a second round pick back through a trade, and Bray was available, I wouldn’t be disappointed if they used that pick on him.
#5 Ryan Nassib – Syracuse
Nassib could most likely end up playing for his college coach in Buffalo if the Bills miss on Geno Smith in the first round. He can put up the numbers, throwing for 3,749 yards with a better than 60 percent completion rate. He definitely won’t last much past the top half of the second day of the draft.
Most Likely Mid-Rounders
These are the college prospects I believe will most likely go in the mid rounds (3-5) of the draft and also are the most likely to get drafted by the Chiefs should the opportunity present itself.
#1 Tyler Wilson – Arkansas
I promise you I’m not just a fan of the name Tyler, but if the Chiefs miss on Bray, Wilson would be my second pick to come to Kansas City. He’s a bit of wildcard, but he has a strong arm and can really throw the deep ball. He threw for 3,387 yards last year with 21 touchdowns. His 13 interceptions are indicative of his gunslinger mentality. He could be a good quarterback with some solid mentorship.
#2 Mike Glennon – North Carolina State
A lot of people are high on Glennon because of his size (he’s 6’7”) and the fact that he threw over 4,000 yards his senior year. However, along with all of those yards came more than one INT per game. He’ll go in the third round, but hopefully to someone other than the Chiefs.
#3 Zac Dysert – University of Miami Ohio
Zac has been very consistent, playing since his freshman year. He has steadily gotten better and while his team didn’t do so well last year (5-8 with no bowl game) his personal stats weren’t terrible. Zac is a solid 3,000 yard passer with 25 TDs to 12 INTs. Coming out of The University of Miami Ohio, his pedigree isn’t quite on part with Ben Roethlisberger. He’ll go in the fourth round for sure. The Chiefs can pass and not hurt my feelings.
#4 Matt Scott – Arizona
Matt is the other mid rounder I wouldn’t mind Reid and Dorsey bringing to KC. He’s rough around the edges, but he’s a fighter. While his team wasn’t perfect last season, all of their losses were only by a touchdown with the exception of the 49-0 pounding they took from Chip Kelly’s Oregon Ducks. Matt has some issues with his fundamentals, but nothing you wouldn’t expect out of a solid fourth to fifth round draft pick. I definitely think he’s better than Stanzi and he doesn’t have a ridiculous mullet, so there’s that.
Bottom of the Barrel
These are the college prospects I believe will go in either the sixth or seventh rounds or could even be undrafted free agents. The Chiefs could select one of these prospects, but I wouldn’t count on it.
#1 Ryan Griffin – Tulane
I didn’t even know Tulane had a football team. Ryan’s team only managed to win two games last season. That doesn’t say much about his leadership potential. I’m hoping Reid and Dorsey pass here.
#2 Brad Sorenson – Southern Utah
There’s a reason this guy is floating at the bottom of the barrel. We’ll leave it at that. His senior season was so forgettable, ESPN.com doesn’t have a player card for him.
#3 Sean Renfree – Duke
Renfree isn’t horrible, but if he’s playing for a third string slot I have to ask if he’s better than Stanzi. There really is no way of knowing, but I can’t say yes at this point. He’s probably better left to another team to pick up.
#4 Landry Jones – Oklahoma
It really surprised me to see Landry Jones slide this far down my list. Statistically speaking, he’s not a bad QB. He threw for over 4,000 yards last year along with 30 touchdowns. However, consistency problems at the combine and pro day have forced Jones’ stock lower and lower until he’s fallen off most teams’ radar. Still, if it’s the end of the sixth round or the beginning of the seventh and he’s sitting there, I think Reid and Dorsey would be crazy not to pick him up. At that point you can’t beat the value and I think he’s definitely better than Stanzi.
#5 Collin Klein – Kansas State
I watched three bowl games last season. The first was the AT & T Cotton Bowl because I wanted to check out Landry ones and Johnny “Football” Manziel. The second was the New Era Pinstripe Bowl because I wanted to check out Geno Smith. I wasn’t impressed. The third bowl game was the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl because I thought, perhaps, Collin Klein could be the Chiefs’ QB of the future. After watching that game (actually, I think I turned it off in the third quarter) I knew he wasn’t the guy. Considering he was a Heisman Trophy runner up, I wasn’t impressed with him at all. I think he’s a seventh round pick, if at all and the Chiefs shouldn’t draft him.
That’s my take on who’s out there for the quarterbacks I think the Chiefs should look at and consider. Regardless, we’ll know what happens in less than a week. What do you think? Did I miss on any of these prospects? Am I wrong in my evaluations and estimations? Let me know in the comments! As always, I look forward to seeing what you have to say!
Until next time, Addicts!