2013 NFL Draft: Latest Odds for Players Contending for Top Overall Pick
We're a little less than two months away until the start of the 2013 NFL Draft.
That's two months for the Kansas City Chiefs to be on the clock with the first pick.
The first pick of the NFL draft is always viewed as the highest prestige of the event because for a lot of teams, that first player is supposed to be franchise altering.
Or, there are teams like Oakland Raiders who drafted JaMarcus Russell with the first pick and have it completely flop and set them back.
With the NFL Scouting Combine now in the books, teams have gotten a better look at some of the talent that will be available in April
Let's break down the odds of some of the players who could have the chance at going No. 1 to Kansas City—barring any draft-day trade, of course.
Matt Barkley, QB, USC
Up until Wednesday, the Chiefs could have used a quarterback.
Matt Cassel's time with the team was looking all but done and there was talks of the Chiefs looking to trade for Nick Foles, who is someone Andy Reid is very familiar with because of his time with the Eagles.
But since the Eagles asking price in a return deal for Foles was really high, it made the Chiefs back off and look elsewhere for a quarterback.
Matt Barkley from USC may not possess the strongest arm in a quarterback, but what he lacks in athletic skill he makes up for with football IQ.
It's always nice to have a combination of both in a player, but it makes the learning process easier if you can get a smart player who is coachable in the NFL.
However, the Chiefs just traded for Alex Smith of the San Francisco 49ers on Wednesday, so the possibility of any quarterback now going No. 1 likely just went out the window.
Deal has been agreed upon between Chiefs and 49ers. Compensation unclear but I'm told again Chiefs have made a clear commitment to Smith.— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) February 27, 2013
And since Barkley isn't even the best quarterback in this draft class, it just lowered his odds even further of going No. 1.
Ezekiel Ansah, OLB, Brigham Young
The outside linebacker known as "Ziggy" really impressed scouts at the NFL Scouting Combine this past week, showing off a combination of athleticism, strength and speed.
Ansah was already slated to be a first round pick, but with his latest showing at Indianapolis, it may have propelled him not only into the first round, but potentially into the first 10 picks of April's draft class.
The only problem for Ansah is that the Chiefs are set at the outside linebacker position with Justin Houston on one side and Tamba Hali on the other—a unit that combined for 19 sacks in 2012.
The Chiefs could definitely use a few more pass rushers on their defense, but I just don't see Kansas City going with Ansah for their first pick right now.
Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
The Kansas City Chiefs lost their No. 1 corner last offseason when he bolted for free agency.
Brandon Carr took a nice five-year, $50.1 deal from the Dallas Cowboys to be their top defensive back.
So adding a top cornerback like Dee Milliner from Alabama could definitely be a possibility if they want to make an upgrade to their secondary.
And it would make sense since they had a defense that gave up 425 points in 2012.
And a defense that was a big part in the Chiefs going 2-14, getting likable head coach Romeo Crennel fired and now having the first pick.
Milliner has blistering speed and would be able to keep up with any wide receiver that he had to cover.
However, I see the Chiefs possessing other needs on the team that will make them pass on a speedy corner like Milliner.
Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
Geno Smith had a tremendous combine this past week and all but cemented himself being the first quarterback selected in April's draft.
However, that was before the Alex Smith trade happened.
The 28-year-old is eager to show the entire NFL that the 49ers made a mistake in going with Colin Kaepernick and wants a fresh start playing in Andy Reid's system.
The fact that Alex Smith proved in 2011 and 2012 that he can be a reliable and consistent quarterback before the concussion helped his value—which is why Reid wanted him.
Now, there is a possibility that the Chiefs could still draft Geno Smith as an insurance policy just in case Alex Smith doesn't work out in Kansas City.
That scenario, however, is very unlikely.
Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
With Branden Albert headed to free agency, it's no guarantee he'll be back with the team.
So one of the glaring needs that the Chiefs have to focus on is finding a left tackle to take his spot if Albert decides to sign elsewhere.
One of the two names you will hear about is Eric Fisher from Central Michigan, whose stock rose after this week Scouting Combine.
Eric Fisher now the draft's top OT, according to Mel Kiper. No. 3 prospect overall. insider.espn.go.com/nfl/draft2013/…
— Kevin Seifert (@espn_nfcnblog) February 27, 2013
Fisher has the ability to be an instant starter in any team's offense and immediately take over as a left tackle if needed.
But, unless a certain player from Texas A&M's stock drops off between now and April, I think Fisher will end up being the second left tackle taken in the draft.
He could still end up being a top five pick, though.
Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida
The Kansas City Chiefs could certainly use an upgrade on the defensive line.
With Sharrif Floyd out of the University of Florida, he would immediately upgrade the Chiefs' defensive line by giving them a run-stopper who would plug up the middle and cause havoc.
They'd also get a very good pass-rusher at the tackle spot who could get to the quarterback, again something guys like Tyson Jackson and Dontari Poe struggled to do.
If Romeo Crennel was still the coach, I could have seen him drafting Floyd and putting him in the defense as an immediate starter.
But Andy Reid is now in charge, and I see him looking elsewhere for his first pick
Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
Every mock draft I have ever seen lately has Luke Joeckel as the No. 1 pick.
B/R's lead NFL writer Matt Miller has Joeckel going with the first pick in his latest mock draft.
Joeckel should go No. 1 mostly because the Chiefs need offensive line help.
Since they have traded for what the team sees as their new franchise quarterback, the Chiefs need to keep Alex Smith upright.
As I mentioned earlier, starting left tackle from 2012 Branden Albert is a free agent and could command a nice payday on the market—especially after Will Beatty got a five-year, $38.75 million deal from the Giants.
So Albert will probably be looking for something in that price range, which means the Chiefs will pass on retaining him.
Now, of course, Albert could come back for less money.
But I don't think he will.
I think Reid and the Chiefs' new GM John Dorsey have their sights set on who will be the best available player come April.
And unless something seriously changes between now and April 25, that No. 1 pick should be Joeckel.