On Thursday, CBS Sports NFL Draft expert Dane Brugler was kind enough to carve out a few minutes to talk Kansas City Chiefs football. With only two weeks until the draft begins on April 30 in Chicago, there remains a high level of intriguing surrounding who Kansas City will target, and eventually take, with its first pick.
Brugler has been doing mock drafts throughout the draft process and currently has one up with the Chiefs taking Kevin Johnson, a cornerback out of Wake Forest University. Below is our Q and A, starting with Johnson.
Q: You have Johnson going to Kansas City in your latest mock draft. Why?
A: He fits what the Chiefs want at the cornerback position. He’s over six feet and has good arm length at 31 inches. He’s very competitive and he started the last three years at Wake Forest. He was a bright spot on a defense which wasn’t very good, but you see the natural cover skills. He’s a little thin, a pipe-cleaner frame but he doesn’t back down. He is not afraid to hit. He doesn’t miss a lot of tackles. … He can play zone or man. I think he will appeal to a lot of teams, especially the Chiefs.
Q: Do you see Cameron Erving as a realistic possibility for Kansas City in the first round?
A: It depends on what they feel about Eric Kush, if they feel they need to invest a first-round pick in a center. I would not rule it out, it is definitely an option. Erving is the best center in this class. He is the only guy you would feel is worthy of a top 50 pick at the center position. He moved from left tackle. … still raw. The tools and versatility are very intriguing. I think he will be off the board in the top 25 and I think he should be considered at number 18.
Q: Where do you see the Chiefs being able to get a quality inside linebacker?
A: The second round is really where I think linebackers are coming off the board, the sweet spot. We might not have an off-the-ball linebacker come off the board before then. Eric Kendricks of UCLA, Miami’s Denzel Perryman, Paul Dawson of TCU, will all be in the second and third rounds. Stephone Anthony of Clemson and Benardrick Mckinney of Mississippi will also be in that range. …There are some questions about Perryman in pass coverage but he’s great against the run, a hammer looking for the nail. He has great instincts and the physicality is there.
Dec 27, 2014; Shreveport, LA, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks tailback Mike Davis (28) rushes during the first half as Miami Hurricanes linebacker Denzel Perryman (52) closes in during the first quarter in the 2014 Independence Bowl at Independence Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports
Q: Who could be the player which falls out of the top 10 picks?
A: Randy Gregory. He has the first-round talent, but it’s the off-field issues. Teams have to be comfortable with who he is as a person. Can be reliable? Will he be eligible and available for every game? He’s a top five or seven talent, but there is a good chance a team in the mid to late-first round could get him. He failed a drug test at the combine but it’s more than that. He failed two drug tests at Nebraska…. You worry about where his priorities are. …Justin Houston failed a drug test at the combine but he has been able to keep his nose clean throughout his career and he’s going to get a big pay day. Josh Gordon is just the opposite.
Q: Where do you see Nick O’Leary of Florida State? He’s a personal favorite of mine for the Chiefs.
A: He’s a later, day-three guy. I don’t see him going in the top 100 picks, but coming off the board in the fourth or fifth round. He’s more of an H-Back , 6’3 and 250 pounds with short arms. The speed is not there but he’s a reliable pass-catcher. He has the competitive appetite and he leaves it all on the field, but he’s not consistently overwhelming … I think the intangibles are going to help him get drafted, but I worry about him being a consistent contributor because he lacks physical traits. I have the Chiefs getting Devin Funchess in the second round where he could be a little bit of both tight end and receiver.