If you’re wanting a Chiefs-flavored reason to watch this week’s NBA Draft, you should be rooting for Jaxson Hayes to find an early home.
On Thursday, the NBA Draft will be broadcast to the millions who want to see Zion Williamson’s name called and to follow the mystery of who will be selected after him. For Kansas City Chiefs fans, if you’re not already a basketball fan, there’s still a reason you might want to follow along.
Jaxson Hayes is one of numerous NBA Draft entrants hoping to hear his name called early in Thursday’s first round. Hayes is considered one of the best overall bigs available in the draft. What you might not realize is that the University of Texas star is not only an incredible athlete, he’s also the son of longtime Kansas City Chiefs tight end Jonathan Hayes.
The elder Hayes was the second round selection of the Chiefs in the 1985 NFL Draft at No. 41 overall. Tight ends from Iowa dominate the current draft scene (Noah Fant, T.J. Hockenson) but the school’s ability to churn out quality options goes back several decades and Hayes was one such player.
Hayes ended up with a nearly decade-long career in Kansas City, from 1985 to 1993. During his nine seasons in K.C., he played in 136 games, starting 95 of them, and caught 135 passes for 1,541 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. His best season came during his final year in K.C. in ’93 when he caught 24 passes for 331 yards, both career-highs, from Joe Montana in the legendary quarterback’s first season with the Chiefs.
Hayes went on to finish his NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, where he played three more years.
Hayes has been a mainstay on the sidelines for the Cincinnati Bengals since his playing days as a tight ends coach for the last 16 seasons. However, the most recent development for Hayes is his hiring as the XFL’s head coach for the franchise in St. Louis.
As for his son, Jaxson, the 6’11 forward averaged 10 points per game last season for the Longhorns. Mock drafts have him potentially going in the lottery, so watch early on Thursday for a chance to see the son of a longtime Chiefs player make his family proud and his basketball dreams come true.