Fresh off of a Super Bowl win, the Kansas City Chiefs enter the 2020 NFL Draft fairly secure. There is hardly any immediate, pressing needs on the roster. However, the draft can still help to keep the Chiefs at or near the top for the foreseeable future. General manager Brett Veach receives a certain description from head coach Andy Reid on what skillset is missing from the roster. Veach has hit some home runs in his brief time in this role. In what will be his third draft as the head man, there are many avenues for which to go down. Here is what to know or watch for from the Chiefs entering this week’s NFL Draft.
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Chiefs Draft Needs
Kansas City has held the AFC West crown for four consecutive seasons now. The gap between the division rivals and them is still rather large. At the same time, the Denver Broncos may have finally found their QB in Drew Lock. The Vegas Raiders can always pull off bold moves, too. They have a chance to add some elite weapons, following their filling of some needs in free agency. Finally the Los Angeles Chargers, are always a wild card and are entering a new era.
Let’s take a look at some of the Chiefs positions of need.
Bringing back Bashaud Breeland was crucial. Furthermore, Charvarius Ward proved he could hang on the outside. Both are not signed for the long term, as of now, though. Adding a starting player here could help in both the short and long term for the Chiefs current outlook. The team looks for guys who can play press man coverage at the line of scrimmage. In addition, they give their cornerbacks a lot of freedom. KC lets their guys cover large chunks of the field.
Anthony Hitchens had a nice bounce back season in his second stint with the Chiefs. Though, he lacks a sense of comfort when playing in coverage. Reggie Ragland is also no longer on the team. Damien Wilson has the confidence and comfort there. Kansas City needs another body that can cover, while having the ample range to move all over the field. This is a sneaky good linebacker class, especially if Veach wants to jump at one on day two or in the middle rounds.
Protecting star quarterback Patrick Mahomes is of the utmost importance in the short and long term future. Mahomes’ return from injury was extremely impressive last year. The Chiefs do not want to have to go through that again, however. Laurent Duvernay-Tardif is a potential cut candidate. Andrew Wylie took a step backwards. Besides the offensive tackles, Kansas City needs to stockpile depth on the interior. Coach Reid and the NFL values athletic protectors who can play multiple positions. There are many options to be had in pretty much every round in the 2020 NFL Draft.
Those are the bigger needs. It would not be out of the question for the Chiefs to take a running back, wide receiver, safety or pass rusher.
We have conducted two different mock drafts so far. One was purposely done with no trades, to show the chances that the Chiefs could take with each pick. There were two different trade backs in the second mock. We will have one more mock draft come out from myself. We are also hoping to release a couple from our new writers that have joined the team. For now check out our first two mock drafts below:
Best Case Scenario
How would the Chiefs receive an A grade for their 2020 NFL Draft results? They would need to find an immediate impact at both cornerback and linebacker. Does it have to be the top of the pack guys for each position? Not necessarily. Nonetheless, Kansas City should nab the guys who fit their team strength for the course of the next handful of years. On the flip side, at least one trade down would be smart. With limited salary cap space and only five draft picks currently, I think Veach would like to add at least one additional pick for this year’s set of selections.
Worst Case Scenario
This is a fun running back class. Guys ranked at the top of this year’s RB position are exciting. But, taking a running back early does not move the needle for Chiefs, given how they are currently built. Damien Williams has gained the trust of the coaching staff. He can win in both the run and pass game. If you really want to add a running back, there are just as valuable options on day three that can make an impact down the line. Other disappointments would include not adding a single cornerback, regardless of which round it is.
Team Draft Question
One question that I constantly look towards, is should the Chiefs double down at defensive back or offensive lineman? Doing that for either of these spots would be just fine for the team’s future outlook. If I had to pick which one to do specifically though, it would be at defensive back. The Chiefs can add a cornerback who is proven on the outside. Then, you can bring in a safety, with hybrid potential, where they’re versatile enough to play multiple positions. With the NFL’s plan to get faster on offense in a passing league, three safety looks are becoming more of the norm.
Key Players To Watch For
Here are five potential fits at some of the positions of need for Kansas City. We have wrote draft prospect profiles on some of these players, so check that out if you have not yet.
– Braden Holecek is the Kansas City Chiefs managing editor for Full Press Coverage. He covers the NFL. Like and follow on Follow @ebearcat9//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js Follow @FPC_Chiefs//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js and Facebook.