The five names I am watching for when the Chiefs draft next weekend

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Mike Davis brings a powerful running style and reliability as a receiver that can make him an excellent 3rd down back. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Davis – Running Back – South Carolina: Fourth Round

If it weren’t for a tremendous workload that wore him down in the 2014 season, Mike Davis would be one of the top five prospects in a strong running back class. Davis isn’t a burner with the straight-line speed of Knile Davis, but he runs with more power, balance and determination, rarely going down on minor contact. Davis is also an excellent receiver out of the backfield, which should definitely make him well-suited for an Andy Reid offense.

The Chiefs aren’t hurting at running back, but it is one of the positions where you should always be looking for new talent. The shelf-life of NFL running backs is comparatively short, so it is smart to always be ready to reload with someone already on the roster instead of trying to find the next guy after your current options are worn out. Draft Profile

Though a media darling at the moment, Ali Marpet’s value comes in his potential to develop into a quality player. That kind of value is usually looked for in the middle to late rounds. Mandatory Credit: Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports

Ali Marpet – Offensive Lineman – Hobart: Fifth Round

Marpet has become a cult favorite with draftniks and analysts. The small-school product demonstrates a lot to like as an NFL prospect, but teams are going to be far more hesitant in drafting him because there are a number of questions. He doesn’t possess the length to be an offensive tackle, the bulk to be a guard, and is a little tall to be a center. Whatever team drafts him is going to look at him as a project that will take a year or two to develop. The talent is there, but it’s going to take some work to get the most out of it.

Though the Chiefs have already made some significant improvements/investments in the offensive line over the past couple of seasons, it never hurts to try and find another guy to work into the mix. Marpet has shown the tenacity and natural talent to be a quality player, but he is a project much like Laurent Duvernay-Tardif. Draft Profile

Nick Marshall is a total project player, but he has all of the tools needed to be molded into a quality NFL defensive back. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Marshall – Corner Back – Auburn: Sixth Round

Without very little game film, it’s difficult to use an early-round pick on a guy who is switching positions. However, Nick Marshall has basically shown everything that a scout could hope to see in a prospect. Great size, quality speed and athleticism, and an understanding of routes that certainly comes from all his experience as a quarterback.  He did play defensive back for Georgia in 2011, but that is long enough ago that it won’t matter much in the evaluation process.

Marshall is definitely a project, but he is absolutely worth the late-round pick investment. Most of the players you take in the sixth and seventh rounds are projects as is. Marshall has a high ceiling as a cornerback. His athleticism fits the position perfectly. This is where Emmitt Thomas is going to make his money. Draft Profile

The Chiefs have a number of options, and the deeper into the drat we go, the less likely certain players are available where I (and even the Chiefs) hope they will be.  And you never know what other players will be available.  The draft can work out so many different ways, which is why it is so tough to accurately predict.  However, if the Chiefs are able to come out with even a couple of these players, it will certainly boost my confidence in the future of the franchise.