Most mock drafts at this point have the Chiefs taking a wide receiver with 23rd overall pick in next month’s draft, so there hasn’t been too much of a reason to keep up with updates on mock drafts. Pick a receiver – Odell Beckham, Marqise Lee, Brandin Cooks – and you’re officially updated on about 95-percent of mock drafts.
It is the five-percent of mock drafts where things can either get silly or intriguing. File this mock draft from Doug Farrar of Sports Illustrated under the latter.
With the 23rd overall pick in the 2014 NFL draft, Farrar says the Chiefs will select offensive tackle Taylor Lewan of Michigan. Here’s Farrar’s reasoning:
The Chiefs are in a bit of a pickle here. They clearly need a tackle, with 2013 first-round pick Eric Fisher struggling at times on the right side last season, and Branden Albert off to the Dolphins. Lewan isn’t among the elite at his position class, and he has some off-field concerns, but he has the perfect size (6-7, 309), pure speed (he ran a 4.87 40-yard dash at the combine) and a nebulous-but-intriguing skillset that could develop into something special over time. Patience could pay off for Andy Reid in this case.
This is an interesting take on what the Chiefs needs are heading into 2014. We know the Chiefs have to upgrade the wide receiver position in the daft, this is clear, but the position is deep enough the Chiefs can address it at any point in the draft. The need to draft a wide receiver in the first round isn’t necessarily a pressing one when one considers how Andy Reid uses the passing game and the depth of the receiver class.
So if not wide receiver, then what? Farrar thinks the most glaring hole is the offensive line, and to a certain degree I don’t disagree with him. Here is something to consider about the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers – maybe the two deepest and most talented teams in the NFL – they combine to have five first round picks and one second round pick on their offensive lines. Six of 10 starting offensive lineman selected with one of the top 44 picks in the draft is a heavy investment.
It should also be noted the two have invested basically nothing in right guard: SF’s Alex Boone was undrafted and Seattle’s J.R. Sweezy was a 7th round pick. So with the other four positions on the offensive line the two teams have combine for five first rounders, a second rounder, a third rounder (69th overall), and a fifth rounder. Seven guys selected in the top 69 picks.
My theory with John Dorsey and Andy Reid is they think, once a quarterback is in place, games are won at the line of scrimmage. Green Bay and Philadelphia’s draft history would serve as examples of the resources poured into the offensive line and defensive front seven. Their longterm success plus San Francisco and Seattle’s recent success would serve as reinforcement the logic is sound. So to me, it would not be out of the realm of possibility the Chiefs elect to take an offensive tackle with the 23rd pick – especially if Lewan were to fall.
Lewan isn’t sexy but longterm he may be the best decision the Chiefs could make for sustain success. Do you agree or do you think there is a better way the Chiefs could go in the draft?