Kansas City Chiefs: Why Drafting Luke Kuechly Would Not Make Sense

Farzin VousoughianContributor IIIApril 26, 2012

KANSAS CITY, MO - JANUARY 09:  Linebacker Jovan Belcher #59 of the Kansas City Chiefs celebrates a sack of quarterback Joe Flacco #5 of the Baltimore Ravens during their 2011 AFC wild card playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 9, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

It is highly anticipated that the Kansas City Chiefs will select offensive guard David DeCastro in tonight's 2012 NFL draft.

Outside of DeCastro, many believe that inside linebacker Luke Kuechly will make his way to Kansas City, according to Josh Looney of KCChiefs.com.

Both picks make sense. DeCastro can help the offensive line and join Eric Winston to complete the rebuilding process up front, while Kuechly can join Pro Bowl linebackers Derrick Johnson and Tamba Hali to form a strong 3-4 defense.

If the Chiefs take Kuechly, he will play alongside Johnson, but that would limit Jovan Belcher's playing time.

Belcher went undrafted in 2009, but has never missed a game and has started 31 of his last 32. Since being in the league, Belcher has impressed general manager Scott Pioli and climbed his way up the Chiefs depth chart over the past three seasons. He started all 16 games for the first time last year.

Belcher signed his restricted free-agent tender this offseason and will earn $1,972,000.

Meanwhile, in 2010, the Chiefs granted Johnson a contract extension. His base salary for the 2012 season is set at $3 million.

As a result, the Chiefs will be spending almost $5 million on their inside linebackers.

Drafting Kuechly would certainly be an upgrade over Belcher. However, the Chiefs seem to be sold on their current linebacker corps and will want to spend their resources elsewhere.

Therefore, drafting Kuechly with the 11th pick would not make much sense and should not be expected.