Sitting a couple of weeks out from the 2023 NFL Draft, the Kansas City Chiefs have done very little to add to their wide receiver group. In fact, they’ve lost more than they added. Swapping out JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mecole Hardman for Richie James doesn’t make you feel great.
We’ve heard a lot about how much the Chiefs love the guys they already have, which is probably true, but nobody is being honest with themselves if they say the Chiefs have a No. 1 wide receiver. The Chiefs may not have a true No. 1 in 2023 but even if they don’t they would still be a lot better off adding a young, talented receiver at some point in the draft.
LSU WR Kayshon Boutte could be a mid-round steal for KC Chiefs
While drafting a receiver early would be ideal, the Chiefs have plenty of other needs so taking a receiver in the middle rounds isn’t out of the question. If that is the case then a good candidate to end up on the Chiefs is LSU WR Kayshon Boutte.
Boutte was once thought to be one of the best wide receiver prospects in the 2023 class. However, after a lackluster senior season and a poor performance at his combine/pro-day, Boutte has fallen down draft boards.
There are also concerns about Boutte’s passion for the game given the plateau in production at LSU and even rumblings of him quitting in the middle of LSU’s season. All in all, there’s a fair amount of risk in drafting Boutte.
On the positive side, Boutte is a fluid athlete and despite only running a 4.5 40-yard dash, he easily runs past defensive backs on tape. Even though his pro-day routes weren’t all that convincing, his cuts are crisp and people may just misinterpret the style he plays because his movements are deceptive and he’s able to get open rather easily.
Boutte’s game is smooth and savvy. He may not be an elite athlete and his testing numbers don’t really reflect it but his tape reflects a great receiver prospect. This past season at LSU may not have been his best but as a sophomore he only played in 6 games due to injury but he put up 509 yards receiving and 9(!) TD’s in those 6 games. Furthermore, Boutte holds the SEC single-game receiving yards record with 308 yards against Ole Miss just as a freshman.
Some downsides to his game are that he doesn’t have the most reliable hands in the world and he doesn’t handle contact before the catch all that well. That said, Boutte would be an ideal fit for the Chiefs because he can also play the “X” receiver spot. In a class littered with smaller receivers, 6′, 185 lbs Boutte would be a good value and he wouldn’t be taking away snaps from Kadarius Toney and Skyy Moore by playing in the slot.
If the Chiefs can overlook the aforementioned questions regarding Boutte and are looking for value in the later rounds, then Boutte would be a good choice to consider and a potential steal as he still has some WR1 potential.