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shaneo69
04-24-2005, 08:30 AM
GRETZ: First-Round Roller Coaster
Apr 23, 2005, 4:04:31 PM by Bob Gretz

It’s hard to find anything in the game of football that matches the roller coaster of the NFL Draft. At least anything where there’s no blocking and tackling involved.

And, no part of the ride has bigger thrills and bigger dips than the first round. The Chiefs found that out again on Saturday, in the 2005 edition of the selection meeting.

It started with exhilaration, as the deal for Patrick Surtain was consummated and the veteran cornerback joined the team. The Chiefs gave up the second-round choice they did not want to lose. But by the end of the week, they knew two things: (1.) the top three cornerbacks in this year’s draft didn’t figure to fall to the 15th pick and (2.) there was no corner wearing a second-round grade that was the equal of Surtain. Throw in the swap of fifth rounders and a deal was done. Oh, and an awful lot of the Hunt Family’s money as well, as Surtain signed a seven-year deal for big dollars.

Once the draft got started, the first dip came when the expected came true: the top three cornerbacks in the draft were gone by the ninth pick, when Washington grabbed Auburn’s Carlos Rogers. Earlier, Tennessee had drafted Adam Jones and Arizona took Antrel Rolle.

Then, some excitement: picking at No. 10, Detroit stunned everyone by grabbing wide receiver Mike Williams. The Lions were expected to go defense, after using so many recent picks on the offensive side of the ball. The decision that Williams was too good to pass up, had ramifications for the Chiefs, just five picks away.

By this time, the Chiefs had three names on the draft board they were waiting on:

Safety Thomas Davis from Georgia.
Linebacker Derrick Johnson out of Texas.
Defensive end Erasmus James from Wisconsin.
DE-LB types DeMarcus Ware and Shawne Merriman went in the next two choices. That was OK with the Chiefs, who didn’t have great interest in either one because they were “tweeners,” more suited for the 3-4 defense than Gunther Cunningham’s scheme.

When New Orleans traded with Houston for the pick at No. 13, there was concern in the Chiefs war room; the Saints were thought to be interested in defense and especially defensive backs. Instead, New Orleans went for big offensive tackle Jammal Brown out of Oklahoma.

With just Carolina between them and their 15 minutes on the clock, the Chiefs still had those three players on their board. That’s when the Panthers created a groan in the basement of Arrowhead, when they grabbed Davis at No. 14.

Had he been available, there’s no doubt the Chiefs would have looked hard at Davis. With him gone, there wasn’t much doubt in what direction they were going to go, and that was Johnson.

As consolation prizes go, Johnson is a good one, potentially a great one. He’s fast, athletic and a playmaker. Generally, he can be found around the football, the greatest strength a defensive player can have. He had a remarkable senior season at Texas, winning both the Bronko Nagurski Trophy as the nation’s top defensive player and the Butkus Award, as the best linebacker. He was a unanimous first-team All-America selection.

Playing in one of the top conference in the country, Johnson started 40 games and played in 50 over his career. He recovered five fumbles, caused 11 and had nine interceptions, including one he took back for a touchdown.

Johnson must get stronger and more physical in his play. But he has those traits nobody can coach: speed and quickness.

Can he get on the field and help the Chiefs defense in 2005? We will see. Former Chiefs defensive coordinator Greg Robinson was the Texas co-defensive coordinator last year and told the Chiefs that Johnson was the most talented linebacker he had been around in his coaching career.

That statement includes John Mobley, who in 1996 was the 15th pick of the first round for Denver. Mobley ended up starting 16 games for the Broncos that season, when they went 13-3.

If that can happen in 2005, it would be quite a finish to another wild ride on the NFL Draft coaster.

shaneo69
04-24-2005, 08:32 AM
While the Chiefs were groaning about losing Davis, I was jumping up and down in front of the TV thanking God that Carolina took him, and left our idiot braintrust with no choice but to pick a good player.

Thank you Marty Hurney and John Fox!!

Big Chief Homer
04-24-2005, 08:37 AM
I know alot of people wanted Davis,but when carolina took a him,the words thank god actually escaped my lips.

Then it was a whole lot of Please Carl,please!!!!!

htismaqe
04-24-2005, 08:38 AM
While the Chiefs were groaning about losing Davis, I was jumping up and down in front of the TV thanking God that Carolina took him, and left our idiot braintrust with no choice but to pick a good player.

Thank you Marty Hurney and John Fox!!

Thomas Davis will excel in Carolina's zone.

Coach
04-24-2005, 08:40 AM
Thomas Davis will excel in Carolina's zone.

As well as Derrick Johnson will excel in Gunther's attacking scheme.

Kclee
04-24-2005, 08:42 AM
But he has those traits nobody can coach: speed and quickness.


Someone better tell Woods he just wasted his money on a speed coach.

DaWolf
04-24-2005, 08:46 AM
It may be that the Chiefs literally felt there was no way that DJ would fall to us and therefore spent a lot more time looking at Davis and getting to know him, thus they really were locking onto him. It was maybe a surprise to the Chiefs braintrust when DJ fell to us. Who knows what happens if both were there. Sounds like we would've leaned Davis, but if they had to actually discuss it I'm not sure how it would have gone. I think DV liked Davis because he gives them a lot of "versatility" as he put it in terms of where to line him up. but as they said, they ended up getting the best pure linebacker. Only time will tell who is better...

htismaqe
04-24-2005, 08:47 AM
As well as Derrick Johnson will excel in Gunther's attacking scheme.

I just still can't believe he fell to us.

PBJ

htismaqe
04-24-2005, 08:48 AM
It may be that the Chiefs literally felt there was no way that DJ would fall to us and therefore spent a lot more time looking at Davis and getting to know him, thus they really were locking onto him. It was maybe a surprise to the Chiefs braintrust when DJ fell to us. Who knows what happens if both were there. Sounds like we would've leaned Davis, but if they had to actually discuss it I'm not sure how it would have gone. I think DV liked Davis because he gives them a lot of "versatility" as he put it in terms of where to line him up. but as they said, they ended up getting the best pure linebacker. Only time will tell who is better...

I think that's exactly what happened.

NOBODY, not the Chiefs, not us, not Kiper, thought he was gonna be there at 15.

HC_Chief
04-24-2005, 08:52 AM
I just still can't believe he fell to us.

PBJ

No doubt! :thumb:
Surtain and DJ = a great weekend for the KC Chiefs defense.

Skip Towne
04-24-2005, 08:58 AM
This reminds me of when we drafted DT. There was another LB named Thomas on the board. It was agonizing but we took the right one that time. Broderick Thomas crashed and burned.

htismaqe
04-24-2005, 09:01 AM
No doubt! :thumb:
Surtain and DJ = a great weekend for the KC Chiefs defense.

A great weekend for the TEAM.

I was listening to Nick Lowery this morning and he sounded pretty happy. He said it's a testament to Trent Green and Holmes and the vets on offense that this team hasn't completely imploded into finger-pointing after being so bad on defense. He really thinks these upgrades will make a difference.

KCFANinNC
04-24-2005, 09:29 AM
Thomas will be like a more athletic Lynch in the Cats cover 2. I was pissed when I saw NO jump up to steal Jammal Brown. Carolina was prepared to draft the Brown, but had to make a dramatic change and grabbed the guy I wanted for the Chiefs. Car really needed some OLine help.

Now I liking the pick since they are my 2. Carolina needs some June 1 OLine help now.

I think the Chiefs will be better off in the long run with the natural LB.

Coach
04-24-2005, 09:36 AM
I don't know... Carolina picked up good O-Linemen in round 3, that one kid from Alabama (Evan Mathis) is going to be good.

But I would believe that Carolina will be drafting some more O-Line for depth here, and for the future as well.