Apr 25, 2013; New York, NY, USA; A general view of the stage before the 2013 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Draft Grades: Early Returns On Dee Ford Pick Are Mixed

Jan 6, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; Auburn Tigers defensive end Dee Ford (30) celebrates during the second half of the 2014 BCS National Championship game against the Florida State Seminoles at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 6, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; Auburn Tigers defensive end Dee Ford (30) celebrates during the second half of the 2014 BCS National Championship game against the Florida State Seminoles at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Many of the early grades are in on the Chiefs’ drafting of Dee Ford. Some are very down, some are high, and many are in the “wait, why did they pick Dee Ford?” camp. Here’s a look around the interwebs of the thoughts on Ford’s selection.

Walter Football: D Grade

Ugh. The Chiefs have not been drafting well in this new regime. Their class last year was Eric Fisher (who struggled), Travis Kelce, Knile Davis and Nico Johnson. They dealt this year’s second for mediocre Alex Smith. And now they’re taking a second-round prospect who fills a minimal need. Things are not looking very bright in Kansas City.

There’s no doubt that Ford is a reach. The Chiefs could have moved down and still picked him. Ford also won’t start anytime soon with Tamba Hali and Justin Houston in front of him. This is the worst pick of the first round thus far, but at least it’s not on a Millen level.

Everyone’s Favorite Analyst Pete Prisco: C- Grade

Brett Gering From Bleacher Report: B+ Grade

In a division that plays host to Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers, a team without a pass rush will, at most, be vying for a wild-card spot every year. By drafting Ford, Kansas City potentially gained much-needed elbow room (financially) and cranked up the pressure on rival AFC West quarterbacks—both literally and figuratively.

CBS Sports: C+ Grade

The Chiefs reinforce how much they value pass-rush here, by adding the explosive Ford to an already-strong tandem of OLBs in Justin Houston and Tamba Hali. Ford’s first step, agility and closing burst make him a disruptive threat off the edge and give the Chiefs yet another speed-rusher to rotate in on passing downs. Ford is talented, but the Chiefs may have been better-suited addressing a bigger need here at 23.

Sports Illustrated: C Grade

But for a team that made a surprising playoff run last season and certainly appears to be in win-now mode, taking on more of a long-term project like Ford goes against the grain quite a bit. Maybe too much.

NFL.com: “Good Job, Good Effort”

Just about everybody was thinking wideout for the team, but with so much depth at the position in this draft, Andy Reid wisely opted to get a pass rusher. Ford will provide insurance for Tamba Hali and Justin Houston and give the team another pass rusher to throw at Peyton Manning.

FanSided: B+ Grade

Obviously, playing against the run could be a bit of an issue for Ford, but his ability as a pass rusher and improvement in all areas of his game can’t be overlooked. He was also at his best during some of the biggest games, playing perhaps his best game of the season in a 45-41 win over the Texas A&M Aggies, who featured arguably the best offensive tackle duo in college football in Jake Matthews and Cedric Ogbuehi. He also showed out in the Tigers’ 34-31 loss to the Florida State Seminoles in the BCS National Championship Game. Ford finished the season with 10.5 sacks and then was excellent in the Senior Bowl.

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Tags: 2014 NFL Draft Dee Ford Kansas City Chiefs

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