Kansas City Chiefs: first-year projections for the 2015 rookie class

5 of 7

Chris Conley

In terms of value, Peters is still probably my favorite pick, but this one’s a close second.

In March, I wrote that John Dorsey might target someone like Chris Conley on Day 2 if the void at receiver hadn’t already been filled.

Before I expand upon that humblebrag, know that the last time I gushed about a freakishly athletic Georgia prospect, he was hexed with a biblical swarm of injuries and has played a total of three snaps in two years.

With Jeremy Maclin at the “Z,” Kansas City was looking for a big-bodied complement who could release from the line of scrimmage and beat press coverage; Conley can (eventually) do that and more.

He’s a 6’2″, 213-pound target who ranked as a top-five performer (among wideouts) in the 40-yard dash, bench press, vertical and broad jump at this year’s combine. He ran five-hundredths of a second faster than Tyler Lockett and jumped an inch higher than Andrew Wiggins.

On the field, Conley is a trustworthy hands-catcher—though he had a few uncharacteristic drops at the combine—and better-than-average route-runner. Corners will occasionally re-route him at the line, so he’ll have to improve his technique in defeating the jam. However, his frame and work ethic should eventually render it a non-issue.

Much like Jason Avant, Conley’s mind can be his best asset at times. He processes the defense and finds cushions in zone coverage, and he’ll abandon his route and redirect if his quarterback’s in trouble.

Also, if you couldn’t tell by the metrics, he’s fast.

Initially, Conley’s role will be dictated by the the progress of those around him. He absorbs information like a sponge, but Andy Reid’s offense is a headache wrapped in a riddle, and most of the other wideouts were granted a head start in dissecting it.

In any event, Conley is going to see his fair share of snaps, and his per-game average is bound to climb anytime that the Chiefs face press-oriented secondaries. (Physical corners will manhandle Wilson if he lines up on the line of scrimmage.)

A handful of skeptics will scan Conley’s stats, see that he had 657 receiving yards as a senior and write him off as a career backup. And those same people will disregard that Georgia’s starting quarterback, due to a run-heavy offense, averaged a meager 21 pass attempts per game. To give that a hint of context, Alex Smith averaged 31 last season.

2015 Projection: A year peppered with highs and lows, but he battles for a starting spot in latter half of the season.