Grading Chiefs GM John Dorsey’s First Draft Class

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Dec 29, 2013; San Diego, CA, USA; Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Eric Fisher (72) prior to the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Round One

Pick No. 1 – Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan

Grade: C-

2014 Cap Hit: $5,043,295

Dead Money if Cut: $18,155,862

For the first time in the history of the franchise, the Chiefs had the first overall pick in the draft and there wasn’t anybody worth drafting. A lot of speculation and build-up went along with this pick and while many hoped the Chiefs would finally draft a franchise quarterback but that never seemed to materialize. At the last minute, when Andy Reid and John Dorsey announced that Fisher would be the pick over other No. 1 overall hopeful, Luke Jockel from Texas A&M, it was met with mixed emotions.

Fisher entered the season already a fish out of water. He was moved from “his” position of left tackle to the right side in order to learn the ropes in the NFL. He was less than successful.

Pro Football Focus was not kind to Fisher in his rookie season. In fact, he only graded in the positive over a score of one in three games all season. On top of that, he was injured during three regular season games and didn’t play in the playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts either.

Fisher has one main problem. He’s not big enough. I think the kid has all the heart in the world, but he doesn’t have the “anchor” to keep from getting man handled by NFL level defensive ends and pass rushing linebackers. I will be really curious to see where he’s at after a full off season on a weight training program.

Fisher is going to need to get better quick. With incumbent, Branden Albert apparently headed elsewhere in 2014 via free agency, Fisher is going to have to step up his game in a big way.

Being a former No. 1 overall pick, Fisher has a heft contract. He will be in a Chiefs uniform this year as well as next. He needs to start getting better quickly to justify that contract.

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Topics: Braden Wilson, Eric Fisher, Eric Kush, John Dorsey, Kansas City Chiefs, Knile Davis, Mike Catapano, Nico Johnson, Sanders Commings, Travis Kelce

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  • toperspective

    I agree it’s too early to grade the draft but as it stands now I’d say the C+ is a bit generous. The most important player taken, the 1st player in the whole draft, gets a C-. Davis had some good moments but the reality is that Reid didn’t trust him for the majority of the season. After the 1st season there is not one guy that jumps out (yet) as a front line NFL starter. Dorsey did a very good job on other personnel moves but his 1st draft is still a huge question mark.

  • jimfromkcj

    I think the Bowe contract told me everything I need to know about Dorsey, He needs to go period. The idea that he came in cold to the draft is bogus, what was he doing in Green Bay before he came here? Wasn’t it the same job as he is doing here, grading players and working on the draft? So he didn’t come in blind, he knew pretty much everything about the current bunch of players entering the draft. So as for me I would give him a couple of notchs below F if possible.

    • Jason Seibel

      I respectfully disagree. Dorsey was preparing the Packers for a draft. Different needs, looking at different players, different big board. And did you mean Bowe needs to go or Dorsey?

      • jimfromkcj

        Both would be a good start.

        • Jason Seibel

          Really? You want to get rid of the Chiefs best receiver and the best GM they’ve had since “King” Carl was a new guy? Why?

          • jimfromkcj

            Jason, what you seem to forget is that if wasn’t for Dorsey’s ludicrous contract that he gave Bowe, we wouldn’t be in that kind of predicament.

          • kcndaock

            He’s been the gm for 1 yr and made the waiver 7 move look brilliant! Bowe needed the contract like Schwartz needs 1 this year. Everyone complains about kc receivers just think if bowe wasn’t there to drop balls.. Lol I mean catch them. Think about everyone calling for Dorsey’s head for not resigning bowe when every other reciever had drops like they did. Oops he spent Clark’s money he’ll fix it! Everyone on aa would sign the high priced fa and would mess up the cap way worse than Dorsey every did, if anything blame pioli for all the bs were dealing with still.. In Dorsey I trust

          • KCMikeG

            I don’t usually agree with Jim but Bowe’s contract has concerned me also. I get that we had next to nothing besides Bowe. Many believe we over payed him based on his performance last year and his inconsistency in performance over his career which is justified. My concern lies in that the WR isn’t the focal point of our offense so why pay any WR so much? Reid’s leading receivers have always been a RB or a TE.

        • berttheclock

          You should read Teicher’s article, of today at ESPN, where he talks about the problems with cutting some of the highest paid KC athletes. It would be a disaster of the financial sort should Bowe be cut. With his high guaranteed contract, plus, his dead money, it would set the Chiefs cap room back into oblivion. Dorsey may well go down as the finest GM the Chiefs have ever had and you want to release him. As General McAuliffe said at Bastogne to the Germans, “Nuts”.

          • jimfromkcj

            Bert the post to Jason above would apply to you too.

          • toperspective

            Love the historical references

      • kcndaock

        I remember reading about Dorsey’s draft methods. It had something to do with building through the draft and taking the best player possible. Whether it was a qb or online he said we will take who we feel is the best player. I don’t think it would vary what team you were working for.

    • Chris Tarrants

      It doesn’t matter if you scout half of these guys before you get a new job. The fact is he didn’t have time to scout the chiefs as a team and really get a feel for what was needed. If he knew then what he knows now I bet he would have drafted a safety and a DB. The fact that he dug up Cooper and Parker and McGrath says enough about what he can do with limited resources. Last years draft isn’t done by any means! Kelce and Commings could both be all pro guys for the next team years while David could replace Charles when he is done playing, fact is nobody really knows yet because its still too early but to say he needs to go us absurd

  • Calchiefsfan

    One year? Really? Ask me after year three and then it can be reasonably assessed. Look at all our picks over the last 10 years. Most didn’t start to look promising until their second year and come into their own the third year. Bowe and Berry are the only ones that comes to mind that were an immediate successes. Think Houston, Poe, Hali, DJ, Hudson, Albert, Charles etc. These guys didn’t come on until their second or third year. Fisher was drafted with it being no secret, coming from a small school, he was going to take time to develop but his upside was higher than Joekel’s.

    Overall all the Chiefs drafting has been pathetic over the years.

    • Jason Seibel

      I’m with you. I think most draft picks don’t catch on for a couple of years. But, if you look at the teams that have had recent success — read Seattle — they’re building younger, faster teams through the draft.

      • Calchiefsfan

        Agreed. That’s why I made the comment about the Chiefs past drafts. A few gems but not enough. If Fisher becomes an all pro LT like Joe Staley, if Kelce stays healthy and Davis, Cooper, Parker all develop then it will be an excellent draft. Chances are only a couple of those things will happen, not all.

      • Calchiefsfan

        One other thing. I know I’m bringing up Staley every time I talk about Fisher but he is an excellent comparison. Staley was 6’6″ and 305lbs when he came into the NFL. Fisher came in at 6’8″ and 306lbs. Fisher will bulk up, he’s still a kid, lol.

        • KCMikeG

          Many, including myself were not happy about Fisher just like we weren’t happy about Poe the year before. It takes most of them a year or two to get up to speed. Poe went from a projected bust after his rookie season to arguably the best 3-4 NT last year. Fisher had to learn a new offense, change from LT to RT, adjust from a small school level of play to the NFL all while fighting injuries. Our Strength & Conditioning coach will bulk him up and get him healthy this offseason. I believe Reid will move him back to his natural LT position as Stephenson can play either side equally well.

      • berttheclock

        The Niners, as well.

      • jimfromkcj

        Jason that is an old excuse that never was a fact. I remember it was the excuse given for Jackson when he had a sorry start. I went back to that draft and proved that defensive linemen picked high in the draft almost always came in and played at a high level the first year, but if you want to make excuses for sorry drafts and it makes you feel good go right ahead, but if you want to be a true fan you will take the koolaid glasses off and see it for what it is. We have had pathetic drafts over the years, and tho there was a little excuse for it when Marty was here and we were constantly drafting towards the bottom of the rounds, When you have the first overall pick in the draft and you pick a guy that shouldn’t even be on the field, there is no excuse.

        • Calchiefsfan

          Tell the truth Jim. Were you calling Poe a bust last year?

          • jimfromkcj

            Not after we went o a 34 in 09 and I wanted Rajh or Cal Thomas and Cody in 10 and Phil Taylor in 11. I could never figure out how stupid could they be going to a 34 and not getting the Nose tackle that makes a 34 work. So no I was not disappointed, just pissed that it took so long to get the final piece of the puzzle. I didn’t think he did all that bad coming in and learning a new system. I jut can’t help wondering how much better if we had drafted Rajh or Cal Thomas in 09 and built around them rather than Jackson and Magee.

          • Calchiefsfan

            I was really ticked about Pioli taking Jackson over Rajh too. It was crazy, especially after Pioli making such a big deal about the nose tackle being the most important position in a 3-4. Rajh must have ticked Pioli off for some weird reason, like stepping over a candy wrapper or something.

    • jimfromkcj

      Cal, upside is like betting on the come on a dice table. If you stay with that strategy the table will have all of your money. Joekel’s upside is just as likely to be as good as Fisher’s and he was doing better than Fisher before he was injured according to PFF. As far as I am concerned a GM has to hit on the first 3 rounds or he should go, especially when a team has as many holes to fill as the Chief’s do. Betting on the potential is for teams like Denver and Seattle who are pretty solid across the board.

      • Calchiefsfan

        I hear what you’re saying Jim but since no one in the draft has played a single down in the NFL every pick is a crap shoot so to speak. I can count on one hand the number of GMs that can hit with any consistency the first 3 rounds. If Kelce pans out next year and Fisher does grow like Staley or Poe, (which both are very possible), then Dorsey has hit on his first 3 picks in his first draft ever as the GM. Davis already looks good to me.

        As for Denver, if Manning goes down they are done. We all saw what happened when he had a bad day, (laughing under my breath). If the Chiefs can get their defense in order, (I’m very concerned about that), we will trounce Denver next year

  • NicholasAlanClayton

    Nice breakdown. I pretty much agree across the board.

  • berttheclock

    If I remember correctly, the reason Kush was graded down for the Chargers’ game was due to run blocking problems.

  • berttheclock

    Nico Johnson is going to have to find a Jet-Pac, as he does not possess speed to chase opponents. He has a limited range and is mostly a near head on run stopper. I am beginning to think some pundits may be correct about Alabama players. Yes, many are 4 and 5 star Rivals coming out of HS, but, more of them tend to end up playing for Saban’s system and individual talents can become lost as they end up just being system players.. I am reminded of the Raiders taking the SEC defensive player of the year in McClain and he may not ever return to the NFL

  • jimfromkcj

    Guys, I admit wasn’t thrilled when Clark hired Reid and Dorsey, Other things I don’t like is the 34 defense and the west coast offense. But having said that and kinda setting the record straight, I posted at the time I would not be negative until they had a chance to show what their vision was for the team. Well as you can see I am not a happy camper. I only had one of Dorsey’s draft picks on my mocks and that was Knile Davis. So I don’t think too much of Dorsey’s acumen when it comes to picking players. I also think Reid’s play calling and time management at the end of games leave a lot to be desired.

    • micah stephenson

      With JC and Davis, don’t it seem like we should be running the ball more?

  • ladner morse

    I don’t know Jason… I think that if it wasn’t for Knile Davis, this draft class would have been a wash.

    Then again… you didn’t mention Alex Smith. Doesn’t he have to be considered part of that class?

    • micah stephenson

      No. He wasn’t drafted with the class. He was an 8 yr vet.

      • ladner morse

        Yes… however, Smith is “a part” of what the Chiefs received for a second round pick in this draft…. which should make this draft look better than it was without him.

  • Erik Hild

    I think Eric Fisher has plenty of size to handle NFL pass rushers. Moving him back to LT will give him confidence and he will be more comfortable with his footwork on the left side. Knile Davis looks to be a solid #2 RB who with time will split carries with Jamaal like Thomas Jones did. Dorsey is a great GM and we should all be happy to have him.

  • Tony Parker

    Definitely not a great draft. In this years draft we better see impact players, especially on D, depth is great but we need immediate impact players on D line and Sec.
    Grade D.

  • micah stephenson

    I give him a C- It wasn’t all that. Fisher was definitely not the best player available. 2nd rd pick was used on Alex. That move was ok, I prolly would have went with Geno. I love me some K.Davis tho. Him and JC at RB is a nice one two punch. Kelce hurt. Commings hurt. Was N.Johnson hurt or just didnt play? The rest have done nothing. Could have done much better.

  • Chris Tarrants

    I give his FA period an A-, if not for Robinson it would be an A. For his Draft I give him a C-. Davis is the only reason it’s not a D. Over all I say a solid C. I don’t blame the draft on him though. He had very little tone to scout both the draft class and team needs as well. It would have been a fenomonal draft if Fisher had came out with guns blazing and if Commings hadn’t gotten hurt but that’s the nature of the beast in the NFL

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