Draft night is upon us and the hype is only increasing for the Chiefs. With the Chief’s hometown hosting the draft this year, there is even more excitement. While the defending champs do not draft until the end of round one at 31st overall (for now), there are still plenty of outcomes for the Chiefs throughout the draft.
I feel like it’ll be boring with a full seven round mock so I’d rather do one more four-round mock. That being said, let’s look at one final mock draft before draft night commences.
Round One, Pick 12: Jaxon Smith-Njigba, WR, Ohio State
While wide receiver is not a dire need for KC, they did lose JuJu and Mecole Hardman to free agency this offseason. KC has the deep-ball threats in Skyy Moore and Marquez Valdez-Scantling. They need a mid-field receiver again that can get them the five to eight yard catches and help convert faster. Jaxon Smith-Njigba is the perfect mid-field threat and gifting him with Patrick Mahomes as his quarterback could take him to the next level.
If Veach is serious about making a splash like this, trade up to 12 (Texans pick) and give Houston pick 31, your 2024 first-rounder, and both of this years seventh-round picks. It is a big haul but if the Chiefs want arguably the best receiver in this draft class, it requires a big haul.
He’s only 21 years old and will have time to grow as an NFL player but with Mahomes throwing him the ball, the sky is the limit. This could be a move that once again has the Chiefs leaps and bounds better than most teams in the AFC in 2023.
Round Two, Pick 63: Felix Anudike-Uzomah, EDGE, Kansas State
Here is where the big needs start to appear for the defending champs. Losing Frank Clark hurt the Chiefs as far as postseason production but helped their wallet. Now it is time to start building a new defensive line core. The pick here should be Uzomah out of Kansas State to get a fresh face edge rusher.
In most draft boards, Uzomah is going near the end of round one but somehow he falls to KC here. Uzomah brings elite hand speed and speed off the edge but he lacks true power. The run game will be his weak spot but that can improve over time. With Chris Jones in the middle and George Karlaftis on the right edge, Uzomah could step into a prominant role for the Chiefs in week one.
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Round Three, Pick 95: Jordan Battle, Safety, Alabama
The Chiefs will stick with defense in round three and that is just fine folks. While the talents of Justin Reid are great, it is never a bad thing to add more talent. Battle has all the intangibles to become a starter in year one in the NFL. He brings his size and speed that will be great in press coverage and in the box. He also has the ability to cover the deep ball and has the IQ to guard just about anyone.
His weaknesses though is his tackling. He tries to hard for the big hit rather than the efficient hit. This of course can be improved with proper coaching but can be an issue in the NFL where the wide receiver talent is only getting better each year. If KC wants a talented safety that can compete with Justin Reid for a bigger role, Battle is that guy.
Round Four, Pick 122: Anthony Bradford, OL, LSU
In round four, the Chiefs finally get some offensive line help. After losing Orlando Brown and Andrew Wylie, KC reloaded by signing Jawaan Taylor. However, they need more depth on the front line that is protecting Mahomes. Bradford might not be a first-round talent but he has the skills to become a starter.
At 6-foot-4 and 332 pounds, Bradford tested as one of the elite interior linemen in this draft class. He has fast feet but solid power which makes him good for the run game. He still needs some work in pass protection but over time, I think he could be a big interior piece for this offensive line.
The Chiefs have a chance to make a splash in this years draft. As the hosting city, this could be the most hyped draft in Chiefs history. Veach and company know what they need to draft but there is always room for big moves. When you’re the defending champs and looking to win that next title, utilizing the NFL Draft to increase your talent is never a bad thing.