#2 – 1961
The franchise’s second draft was undoubtedly also one of its very best. (There was an AFL draft in 1960 prior to the start of the first season.) The team drafted six players who contributed greatly to the team’s dominance of the ’60s—including three AFL Championships, two Super Bowl appearances, and the Super Bowl IV World Championship.
Collectively this six-pack played for the Chiefs’ franchise for 55 seasons. Five of the six played in all three championship seasons (sans Jackson) and four the six started in both Super Bowls (sans McClinton). Combined they had 30 Pro Bowl appearances (more than half of all seasons played), and also had 13 different 1st Team All-Pro selections.
There is a case to be made that four of these players should be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame (though none are). Linebacker EJ Holub and defensive end Jerry Mays were both two time 1st Team All-Pro selections and tight end Fred Arbanas made the squad three times. The biggest snub of the whole lot is tackle Jim Tyrer, who was a nine time Pro Bowler and was named a 1st Team All-Pro six times.
Perhaps what is even more remarkable is the fact that the best player the team drafted, in terms of their NFL resume, never played a down for the franchise. Bob Lilly was selected by the team in the second round, but was also taken by the Dallas Cowboys in the first round of the NFL Draft. Lilly went to the Cowboys and all the star defensive tackle did there was make 11 Pro Bowls and be named a 1st Team All-Pro seven times.
As you might have guessed, “Mr. Cowboy” (Lilly’s nickname) is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.