Dec 29, 2012; Fort Worth, TX, USA; Rice Owls cornerback Phillip Gaines (15) celebrates making a tackle against Air Force Falcons wide receiver Ty MacArthur (27) in the Armed Forces Bowl at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Rice beat Air Force 33-14. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
Phillip Gaines – CB – Rice – 6’0″ – 193 lbs – 4.38 forty
The Chiefs went with a cornerback in round three taking Phillip Gaines from Rice. Despite playing at a small program, Gaines was a well thought of prospect that combines ideal size and speed for the position.
Once again, the downfall of the Chiefs down the stretch was that their drop off in pass rush exposed some weaknesses in the secondary. The top pick dealt with the pass rush part of that equation and now this pick addresses the pass coverage. Gaines has both the length and speed that you look for in a CB. Mike Loyko of nepatriotsdraft.com went so far as to call him the fastest CB in the draft. Gaines was a team captain that set the school record for passes defended. Last season only 32.5% of the passes thrown at him were completed. Much like their first pick set up a replacement for Tamba Hali, this pick lays the way for replacing the aging and expensive Brandon Flowers.
While there were clear coverage issues last season, the Chiefs entered the draft with Brandon Flowers, Sean Smith, Marcus Cooper, Ron Parker, and Chris Owens at CB. That’s not exactly a horrible depth chart. So once again the main issues that people have with this pick is not so much that they don’t think Gaines is good, but that there were WRs available (Donte Moncrief and Bruce Ellington) that people really wanted to see KC pick. In terms of his scouting report, Gaines will need to gain some more physical strength at the NFL level and with a much faster game in the NFL he will not be able to rely on his speed making up for mistakes like he did in college.
I feel about the exact same way about this pick as I do about the first pick. While it wasn’t the position that I was thinking at the time, it’s hard to argue with the upside of the player that they drafted. I think Gaines has the potential to be KC’s number one CB in a few years. Getting a potential number one CB in the third round is great value. Plus, you can’t argue that KC’s coverage wasn’t an issue down the stretch, so Gaines can be a contributor right away as well. That having been said, if I was the one making the call I would have drafted Donte Moncrief.