2023 NFL Draft crushes for the Kansas City Chiefs
The 2023 NFL Draft is now just days away. This is an exciting time for fans of the Kansas City Chiefs. Our favorite team will soon add a group of new players for us to obsess over. Plus, for the first time ever, the draft is being held in Kansas City, so thousands of Chiefs fans are going to be able to watch the draft unfold in person. By this point, most fans have several players they would love for the Chiefs to pick and I am no exception.
This is my seventh annual Chiefs draft crush piece for Arrowhead Addict. If you do the math, that means the 2017 draft was the first time I did one of these and I started out with a bang. My quarterback crush was Patrick Mahomes, my running back crush was Alvin Kamara, and my tight end crush was George Kittle. Last season I was banging the table for Dameon Pierce and George Pickens (who turned out to be pretty good) as well as future Chiefs defenders Leo Chenal and Bryan Cook.
Draft crushes can be funny. Sometimes it’s an early-round prospect that is just leaping off the tape at you. Other times it’s a late-round guy that just has some trait or play style that tells you that they’re going to translate to the NFL much better than a lot of people are predicting. Sometimes my draft crushes are guys I think will be great anywhere and other times they are guys that I think are specifically a great fit for the Chiefs.
I’ve watched hundreds of draft prospects at this point and the guys that made the list this year are all guys that jumped out at me for one reason or another. I will admit up front that I haven’t watched every prospect. In fact, I ran out of time to do interior offensive line and linebacker this year, so you’ll notice those positions are missing from the list. Let’s kick things off with the quarterback position and my one crush there this year.
Quarterback Draft Crush
Clayton Tune – Houston – 6’2″ – 220 lbs
If the Chiefs had signed veteran Blaine Gabbert sooner, I may have skipped watching the quarterbacks this year, but for much of the process, it looked like K.C. could go into the draft looking for a new number two quarterback behind Patrick Mahomes. So I watched almost all the quarterbacks predicted to go in the mid-to-late rounds and Clayton Tune of Houston was by far the guy I liked best.
I actually don’t understand why Tune isn’t being predicted to go off the board right after the top five quarterbacks are gone. Tune would make sense to me as a third-round pick, but it seems like most “experts” have him going off the board in rounds 5-7. He’s a good athlete, has a strong arm, and his accuracy and pocket presence are good. He also has a reputation for being a good leader and hard worker. There just isn’t much not to like. Now, I don’t think he’s elite in any of those areas either, but I’m confident that Tune can carve out a role in the NFL as a quality backup and spot starter.
Pro Football Focus actual has Tune graded as the highest-rated passer in this class from the pocket as well as the highest-rated passer versus the blitz. That throwing ability shows up on tape too. The reason I like Tune for KC specifically is that I feel like he’s “good enough” to execute an Andy Reid offense if he has to step in for a game or two. He may not have a flashy elite calling card, but he can get the job done. I think his play from the pocket (and against the blitz) shows that he reads defenses well enough to be an asset in the meeting room, and when Mahomes comes to the sideline, that’s big when you’re looking for a backup in K.C.
Now let’s move on to the running backs.