As the champions of Super Bowl LIV, the Kansas City Chiefs receive the 32nd pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Here’s why they should consider trading back.
For the first time in 50 years, the Kansas City Chiefs are world champions of the National Football League. Even a month-and-a-half out, with the uncertainty we see all around us, this still brings me great joy.
For years, I’ve had a number of pieces of video and writing content I’ve enjoyed revisiting. When the year ended in defeat, these memorials to the season lost a little bit of their shine. That’s not the case this year, and has even increased the shine of those from years past. In life, it’s not just about achieving goals but learning to enjoy all the little moments along the way.
With all that said, for the first time in a while the Chiefs will be picking at the end of the first round in this year’s NFL Draft. It’s a particularly challenging place for general managers to be in, as most years teams’ draft boards have roughly 15-20 prospects with a first round grade. Even in a very deep class like this year’s is purported to be, it’s still likely a high risk scenario to stay put at pick 32. The two options available are to either trade up to get the talent you want and need, or trade back to acquire additional draft capital.
Some have argued the Chiefs should stay put, and it’s possible they do. I think it’s more likely the prior two scenarios win out. If the Chiefs feel the need to trade up and grab a particular player because they believe that player will change the complexion of their offense or defense in the next five seasons, they should absolutely pull the trigger. More superstar prospects usually leads to more entertaining football. Even with the best quarterback in the NFL, you still need playmakers on both sides of the ball.
The second scenario might be the wisest choice, for a couple of reasons. As I talked about earlier, even in a deep draft class it’s risky to assume you can stay put at 32 and grab a first-round graded talent. Alternatively, if you trade up you’re likely giving up another high-value draft pick with which you could grab a first-year starter at a position of need. Make no mistake, while the Chiefs are Super Bowl champions, the number of departures have opened several questions at important positions.
That’s why trading back is the best case scenario. The Chiefs have a number of needs in 2020, and with monster contracts and cap hits looming in the years following, they will need as many starters on cheap deals as they possibly can get. Trading back in such a deep class will allow them to grab one or two extra potential starters for the next four seasons—an important facet for a team with only five draft picks at their disposal.
With Veach’s success in all rounds of last year’s draft, that is a tantalizing proposition.