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

  • trinity

    I’m not sure what the heck the chiefs were thinking with this pick. It’s a definite head scratcher. They really should have went reciever.

    • Blaize Richardson

      Which WR should they have drafted? Marqise Lee was the next WR taken and he fell out of the first entirely, because he’s not worth that high of a selection. He’s a guy who is smaller and has durabilty concerns and he doesn’t have the speed you’d want from a player of his stature (he’s not slow, but his speed doesn’t blow you away either). That coupled with drops and a poor season in college last year and it’s no wonder the Chiefs and everyone else passed on him.

      Marqise Lee doesn’t make our team better. He wasn’t an upgrade over Avery and doesn’t have the ceiling or the experience in our offense that AJJ does. Drafting Lee would’ve been a mistake. I really don’t see why everyone were so high on us drafting Lee. He clearly wasn’t the best player available.

      • trinity

        Marquise Lee has struggled with injury? Lol maybe you didn’t know, but Dee Ford has consistently struggled with injury as well, and he literally never made it through a full college season healthy. He also struggles moving in reverse, and has a slighter than desired build that makes it difficult for him to shed blockers. It’s all in his draft profile, so go have a look. He’s a talented player who has flaws, just like marquise and just about every player in this draft. The point in that the chiefs had more pressing needs than a DE in the first round. Not just wide receiver, but other positions as well. That is Why this is a head scratcher.

        • Blaize Richardson

          Dee Ford had some injury concerns, but he doesn’t worry me nearly as much as Lee, due to Lee’s size and the position he plays. As far as Ford’s build, I think his build is fine. There have been several stars over the year with similar size and would be easier for him to put on weight and still be effective, than it would for Lee. Fact is we needed defensive help more than anything and he was the best defended available.

          You mention we should’ve drafted a different position, but who did you have in mind? Pick #23 would’ve been too early to draft a guard (unless said prospect in extremely promising and instantly NFL ready, which there weren’t any), especially a RG if that was something you wanted and the top two safeties of this draft were both off the board. For the pick we had and the players available the Chiefs made the right choice.

          • trinity

            That’s your opinion, and that’s fine. My opinion is that they didn’t need him. As far as who I would have drafted…if we go by your logic of “it doesn’t matter about need, just draft a guy with talent” then I like darqueze denard and Jason verette even better than dee ford. But even if they had chose those 2 guys, I still would have questioned the pick, because of need. That’s my whole point. I would have went with marquise lee. That’s my opinion. Time will tell about Dee Ford. And its going to take time no doubt, because I’m betting he doesn’t do much next season.

  • Canad-Ian

    I hate the argument that Chiefs shouldn’t add an OLB when they have Houston and Hali. Hali’s contract needs to get off the books and he turns 31 in november. I want Chiefs to pick defence early and often year after year.

    • Michael Shaw

      Agree with your first point, but we don’t have that great of an offense to completely ignore it like King Carl did the offensive line during the last few years of his tenure here.

  • Chris Tarrants

    Dorsey has a plan, unless you somehow are privy to such information how can anyone second geuss the guy? In 4 years if this team isn’t sitting at the top of the division and vying for the playoffs every year then and only then can we as fans second geuss his moves! Right now let this guy do what he is getting paid to do and build this team.

    • Michael Shaw

      Somewhat true. I mean as fans we can all expect them to do certain things when they are so glaringly obvious, right?

      • Chris Tarrants

        We all had our eyes on a big new stud WR but maybe they know something about one of the guys already on the roster or even a guy that they know won’t get drafted but has the tools to be a playmaker? What ever the reasoning I believe that they have a plan and are executing said plan

  • chief4ever

    May be the steal of the draft at # 23 (defensive MVP at Senior Bowl )…..depends on the rest of the draft….Ford has the tools and athleticism to play DE, OLB , and even ILB in some blitz packages. Let’s finish the draft, the signings after draft and camp before we start deciding the 2014-2015 season predictions. Go Chiefs !

  • preston riley

    I don’t know a lot about Ford, but I agree with Chiefs drafting D – especially a pass rusher. Andy Reid’s offense can put up points. I know people have different opinions of Alex Smith, but he showed as season went along that he could put up points in this offense. The D just couldn’t hold up. Not just playoff game. I think about that loss to chargers – giving up a length of the field TD drive in last 50 seconds. At home?!?

    Also allowing Peyton to sit back and hit Decker deep over and over. they need a pass rush.