It was only a week ago that the 2021 NFL Draft was unfolding before us, fulfilling the dreams of more than two hundred college football prospects. Over the course of the three-day event, the K.C. Chiefs selected six new players at myriad positions in the hopes of bolstering areas of need on the roster and providing the roster with young talent to maintain the present momentum toward continued Super Bowl contention.
Somehow it’s not too soon to be thinking about the future. It might sound ridiculous but 2022 mock drafts are already out en masse, which means we can at least get a sense of what sort of prospects are being linked to the Chiefs in the future. It might be one year out, but these mocks also give us some early names to watch as the coming college football season creeps closer and fans can start to get their hopes up and/or build their knowledge of the upcoming 2022 draft class.
When it comes to the Chiefs, every single mock draft has K.C. picking either No. 31 overall in its model—as they chose to repeat this year’s draft order—or they have them selecting last—by choosing to utilize current Super Bowl odds instead. That means, once again, the Chiefs are expected to draft after nearly every other team has had a choice or even two.
Here’s a look at how various mocks are drafting for the Chiefs in ’22.
For those who were hoping the Chiefs would splurge on the wideout position early in the 2021 draft (ahem, yours truly), then the connection of Justyn Ross to the Chiefs sounds like a welcome addition. As a freshman at Clemson—yes, a freshman—Ross hit the 1K yard mark in receiving yards and caught 9 touchdowns. He followed that up with 66 catches for 865 yards and 8 more touchdowns in 2019. Then came a neck injury that robbed him of his entire junior year.
Ross decided to return to school to finish what he started with Clemson, and the Chiefs would do well to see such a tremendous receiving talent fall to them here. It would also continue the team’s current link to Clemson wideouts like Sammy Watkins and Cornell Powell.
If the Chiefs are wanting to get ahead of any sort of transition from Frank Clark in the future while providing a serious punch to the pass rush in the short term, then George Karlaftis is an ideal grab at the end of the first here. The Purdue product has been a one-man wrecking crew since his freshman year when he had 17 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks as a freshman.
Last season, he played in only two games (in which he added another 2 sacks), so it will be interesting to see how dominating he is given another full season—especially as he adds further strength and experience.
Bama has generated an incredible number of first-round prospects in recent years, and Josh Jobe looks like another stellar prospect in the secondary. For the Chiefs, this move provide some young impact at a position that hasn’t had a major investment in quite some time. Jobe should excel now that Surtain is out of the spotlight in Tuscaloosa, which could raise his ceiling a bit higher than what the Chiefs could reach. Still, if the Deandre Baker signing doesn’t work out as hoped, then the drafting of Jobe, or some other top-tier corner, would be especially important.