Geno Smith Combine: Strong Showing Will Land Quarterback No. 1 Overall Selection

Mike Moraitis@@michaelmoraitisAnalyst IFebruary 20, 2013

MORGANTOWN, WV - OCTOBER 20:  Geno Smith #12 of the West Virginia Mountaineers drops back to pass against the Kansas State Wildcats during the game on October 20, 2012 at Mountaineer Field in Morgantown, West Virginia.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

This year's NFL draft doesn't present any surefire franchise quarterbacks, but former West Virginia Mountaineers signal-caller Geno Smith is no doubt the closest.

However, just because Smith is considered the best quarterback on the board doesn't mean he will be chosen as the No. 1 overall pick by the Kansas City Chiefs. That's exactly why his performance at the combine this week (Feb. 20 to Feb. 26) is so important.

If there is any doubt about his abilities to be a successful quarterback in the NFL for years to come, Smith can prove he can hang during the combine.

As a team, the Chiefs are not very good as evidenced by their 2-14 record from the 2012 season. They have several needs to address in this draft and quarterback is certainly one of them.

Brady Quinn and Matt Cassel both played behind center last season, but neither were all that impressive.

Quinn played in 10 games and failed to complete 60 percent of his passes while throwing two touchdowns and eight picks. Cassel also failed to reach a 60 percent completion rate, and he threw six touchdowns and 12 interceptions in nine games.

Ask around the league and I'd bet that not many people—Chiefs fans included—believe Quinn and Cassel are franchise quarterbacks.

That said, new head coach Andy Reid might look to develop his own quarterback much like he did with Donovan McNabb as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Smith looked to be cruising to the No. 1 overall spot in this year's draft early on in the college football season, but that all changed after Smith had a lackluster finish to his college career.

While Smith has the size and arm strength to be an NFL quarterback, as well as the necessary athleticism to extend plays in the pocket, ESPN draft expert Todd McShay (per West Virginia Illustrated) has expressed some concerns about him:

"Geno Smith is probably the best all-around quarterback in this class," McShay said. "However, he is inconsistent with his accuracy and he does not always process information fast enough."

So, clearly Smith still has some things to prove while at the combine. Not only does he have to show what we already see as strengths, but he also must make it perfectly clear that he has the accuracy and ability to understand what is expected of him at the position.

If he can impress enough to overshadow his negatives or even erase them altogether, Smith will be the No. 1 pick in the 2013 NFL draft. If not, look for the Chiefs to take the consensus best player on the board, offensive tackle Luke Joeckel.