Sep 19, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver A.J. Jenkins (15) during the second quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Chiefs defeated the Eagles 26-16. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

A.J. Jenkins The Winner Through Two Days Of The NFL Draft

We can all agree the Kansas City Chiefs have a wide receiver problem. While we can disagree about the value of receivers to the offense or what areas of the team are most important to improve, we can at least come to the conclusion that the worst position group on the team is wide receiver.

So it comes as a surprise that after two days of the NFL Draft the Chiefs have yet to address the wide receiver position. The roster currently features an aging Dwayne Bowe, an inconsistent Donnie Avery, unknowns in Weston Dressler and Junior Hemingway, an injured Kyle Williams, and a host of practice squad types – Frankie Hammond, Jerrell Jackson, Rashad Ross, and Fred Williams. No one of that group has the upside to upgrade the Chiefs’ receiving group substantially. If anything, there may be regression as Bowe is aging and the Chiefs are losing Dexter McCluster.

This is why receiver seemed like a lock after two days of the draft. Add a top end receiver in the NFL’s deepest wide receiver draft in years and maybe the Chiefs could stop the bleeding in the passing game. A bounce back year from Bowe, healthy years from Anthony Fasano and Travis Kelce, and a top draft pick seemed like a reasonable plan. But this isn’t the plan Kansas City chose.

Instead, KC seems certain they have something in A.J. Jenkins. Jenkins, a former first round pick of the 49ers, was acquired via a trade which involved the Chiefs sending their first round bust from 2011, Jon Baldwin, to San Francisco. Neither one of them saw much playing time, though Jenkins did catch more passes (8) than Baldwin (3) in limited action.

It would appear there is a feeling with the Chiefs that Jenkins can be successful in this offense in a role similar to Dexter McClusters. Unlike McCluster, Jenkins has true downfield speed and is three inches taller, so there is a better athlete in that role. And it is fair to say Jenkins really had no real shot at San Francisco (active for only three games) and came in way too late last season to contribute much in his first season in Kansas City.

With Bowe and Avery still the top two receivers on the team and no draft pick immediately available to compete for the third position, Jenkins earned a bunch of playing time these past two days. While there are still some very good wide receiver prospects available in the draft, and I’m sure the Chiefs will select one of them today, few really look to have the outlook to see more than 40 targets come their way this season. This means there are a bunch of snaps and targets that are going to go Jenkins’ way that used to belong to McCluster.

There is still time for all of this to be sorted out, of course. There could be a surprise June 1 cut or their could be a trade that changes the game later this summer. Who saw Stevie Johnson being traded this weekend a week ago?

But it looks as if now Jenkins will be walking away with this weekend as the top candidate to replace McCluster’s snaps heading into training camp. One can only assume Andy Reid and John Dorsey know something we don’t about his prospects for success.

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Tags: 2014 NFL Draft Kansas City Chiefs

  • paul pace

    Still have 4 more picks in the draft so the Chiefs. It is a logical assumption that they will now concentrate on offense somewhere within the next 4 picks. A couple of O-linemen and maybe two WR’s.

  • Blaize Richardson

    He has the measurables and he flashed a little bit of that potential late in the year last season. It really wouldn’t be that crazy if he developed into a star. Andy Reid is an offensive mastermind. I’m 100% confident he has a plan and knows what he’s doing.

  • Hawthorne

    Any WR the chiefs drafted this year wasn’t going to see much play time because of the complexity or Reid’s system, for that reason it makes sense to draft a more developmental prospect like Jeff Janis or L’Damian Washington. Jared Abbrederis could also be a good fit because of his 3 cone time.

  • berttheclock

    I wonder how many hours the Chiefs are having Jenkins in the weight room. Trent Baalke, the GM of the Niners, said the reason he traded him was because he didn’t think he was strong enough. Jenkins had a poor weight lifting session at the combine. Ironically, so did Beckham, this year. However, it appeared to me Jenkins had far more confidence problems in SF which were washed away in KC as he was coming on very well, once, Alex Smith zoned him on him.. The remaining receivers in the draft have more possession types written upon them than high end speed to the house, but, as long as they can move the chains, so what. There is one tall wide out from Clemson who would be great for fades, but, he has iffy hands. Appears to double clutch on catches. Herron of Wyoming has speed and Abbederis of Wisconsin is the type who comes off the line of scrimmage and knows where he is going and how to get open. Will be interesting.

  • tm1946

    AJ must be one pass catching fool. Entire draft and the Chiefs were not interested in a single WR. This is brilliant on several levels. AJ was a bust in SF, got traded for our WR bust, and now going to be a #2 WR without doing anything more than breathing.

  • KCMikeG

    IMO Dorsey & Reid wouldn’t go out and just happened to bring in AJJ & Williams? With the QB who had worked with them in SF on our roster now they just went out and got them without any input from Alex Smith? Wouldn’t due diligence include the perspective of the guy they bet their future on as to whether his former WR’s were worth signing?