A midseason review of the 2023 Kansas City Chiefs draft class

Reviewing the Kansas City Chiefs' 2023 rookie draft class at the midway point of the regular season.
Oct 12, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Rashee Rice (4) runs the
Oct 12, 2023; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Rashee Rice (4) runs the / William Purnell-USA TODAY Sports
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The Kansas City Chiefs 2023 rookie class has flown under-the-radar for the first nine weeks of the season.

Last year, Kansas City saw several of their rookies on both sides of the ball contribute to a successful Super Bowl run. The team hasn't quite gotten the same return on investment as they have from their 2022 class, but the 2023 has paid a few dividends so far. To be fair to them, it's extremely difficult to replicate the rookie success of a season ago.

In the midst of their two-week break, let's review every player in the Chiefs' 2023 draft class. What have we learned about each player so far, and what will we hope to see going forward?

Felix Anudike-Uzomah, DL (31st overall)

With their lone first-round pick the year they hosted the draft, the Chiefs took local kid, Felix Anudike-Uzomah. Coming out of Kansas State, FAU was expected to be selected somewhere in the late first round to early second round and that's exactly where he went. He wasn't a home run of a pick, but he wasn't a reach either. The value was sufficient and he plays a position of need that is also considered premium among most NFL analysts.

Anudike-Uzomah has had a pretty low-key rookie campaign so far. In nine games, he's racked up 10 tackles and half of a sack. Prior to the bye week, he trailed only Mike Danna and George Karlaftis in snaps among defensive ends, but he's only played 23 in the three games since the return of Charles Omenihu.

Although FAU has had a rather uneventful season to date, there's no reason to be worried. The Chiefs knew from the start that he wouldn't be a day-one starter. He's still only 21 years old, and unlike George Karlaftis last year, was viewed as a prospect in need of a de facto redshirt season. It also didn't help that he had thumb surgery in the offseason and didn't fully recover until the summer.

Rashee Rice, WR (55th overall)

The belle of the ball in the 2023 NFL Draft for the Chiefs through two months has clearly been wide receiver Rashee Rice. He's the only rookie above 200 snaps and leads all Kansas City wide receivers in receptions, yards, and touchdowns.

At just 23 years old, there's a legitimate argument that he's the second-best pass-catcher for Patrick Mahomes this season. Andy Reid has been increasing his workload over the last several weeks, including starting the past three games.

In a much-maligned receiver room, Rice has been one of the very few bright spots. He's lethal against zone coverage and has been (by far) the best Chiefs receiver after the catch. One year after (likely) missing with Skyy Moore, Brett Veach appears to have nailed the Rashee Rice pick. If the Kansas City passing game is going to turn around, Rice will likely be a key reason why.