2012 NFL Draft: Kansas City Chiefs' 7-Round Mock Draft
Even though the 2011 season was considered a disappointment after winning the AFC West the year before, the Chiefs have a pretty solid roster, especially if they can re-sign their two key free agents—Dwayne Bowe and Brandon Carr.
Bringing back Carr should be the first priority; the Chiefs are close to having an elite defense, and it would allow them to add some pieces to the offense through the draft.
If both Carr and Bowe are brought back, it would allow for taking the best player available or taking a chance on a higher-risk player.
This should be an interesting draft for Kansas City. It could add the pieces they need to make a run at another AFC West crown and a run in the playoffs.
1. David DeCastro, G, Stanford
I have seen a few mock drafts where Trent Richardson is the pick here, but I think he is off the board and the Chiefs go with DeCastro here.
This is a pick where a team need meets the best player available. The former Stanford star is a huge upgrade over what the Chiefs have at guard now, and he will help open holes for Jamaal Charles.
There are no weaknesses in DeCastro's game. He can be a force as a straight-ahead blocker and in pulling in the run game while also providing great pass protection.
Picking a guard this high is not the flashiest choice, but DeCastro is probably the safest player available in this draft.
2. Doug Martin, RB, Boise State
Continuing to build the running game, I have the Chiefs taking a good compliment to Charles in Doug Martin in the second round.
Martin is a compact, tough runner who draws comparisons to Maurice Jones-Drew. But he doesn't offer much in the passing game.
With Thomas Jones nearing the end of his career, the Chiefs could use someone to share the load with Charles.
3. Nick Toon, WR, Wisconsin
I really don't think Bowe will be back next year, and the Chiefs will have to spend a draft pick in looking for his replacement.
Toon offers decent size and has experience lining up outside and in the slot; he was pretty productive in the Badgers run-first offense.
Injuries have kept Toon off the field from time to time in college, and Kansas City will want to make sure Toon's latest foot injury is going to heal fine before taking him on.
4. Josh Chapman, DT, Alabama
If the Chiefs want to continue building an elite defense, they will have to find a replacement for Kelly Gregg sometime soon.
Alabama's Josh Chapman will not be ready to start the season after having surgery to repair a torn ACL. After getting injured last season, Chapman played in eight more games to end the year! His toughness is not in question.
If the Chiefs are willing to wait for Chapman to return, they will be getting a dominating run-stuffer as well as a guy who is a bit of a threat as a pass-rusher.
5. Jerry Franklin, ILB, Arkansas
Adding an inside linebacker who is a tackling machine is my choice here for Kansas City.
Franklin was a four-year starter for the Razorbacks and led the team in tackles all four of those years.
While not the most explosive athlete, Franklin knows what angles to take to meet ball carriers, and he's a sure tackler once he gets his hands on the runner.
Derrick Johnson and Franklin would set the Chiefs up for a while in the middle of the defense.
6. Matt Daniels, SS, Duke
Continuing to build the defense, I am going with more secondary help as well as a guy who can help on special teams.
Daniels was a three-year starter at Duke and is pretty much a prototypical strong safety who makes plays in the box and can cover space in a zone.
His weakness is that he has trouble keeping up with quicker receivers; his trouble is in opening his hips and turning to run.
His willingness to throw his body around to make tackles will lend well to being a gunner on special teams.
7. Case Keenum, QB, Houston
Keenum does have an accurate arm, but he doesn't have the rocket that teams spend a high draft pick on.
Taking a chance on such a productive quarterback in the seventh round is not too much of a risk. If Keenum becomes the Chiefs backup QB, the pick will be worth it.