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Direckshun
05-01-2008, 12:39 PM
I don't know if this has been posted before (SEARCH FEATURE WTF), but it's a brilliant insight into how Kuharich handled the Chiefs' Draft:

http://cbs.sportsline.com/nfl/story/10805234/1

Putting together a solid draft, round by round
April 29, 2008
By Clark Judge

Tell me that for one brief moment last weekend Bill Kuharich, vice president of player personnel for the Kansas City Chiefs, didn't feel like Leonardo DeCaprio's character in Titanic. You know ... "I'm the king of the world!"

"No," said Kuharich, "because there was a lot of hard work that went on, and I didn't make the picks. Carl (Peterson, the team's president) and Herm (Edwards) did.

"I got all the support from the scouts who helped me line up the board, which was my job. I got the board aligned, made suggestions when asked and let Carl and Herm pick the apples off the tree."

OK, fine, but Kuharich still deserves a curtain call. Because everywhere you turned Monday people were congratulating the Chiefs for one of the best drafts in recent history.

It's not just that they got it right; it's that they aced the exam, with Kuharich & Co. finding value with nearly all of their 12 draft picks.

They started by taking defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey. He was the top player on their board. Then they moved up to grab Branden Albert, the top guard in the draft. Cornerback Brandon Flowers was next, followed by star running back Jamaal Charles and DuJuan Morgan -- someone one NFC club ranked as its top safety.

I think you get the idea. This was Home Run Derby, with Kuharich clearing the fence with almost every swing. Hail to the Chiefs. They ran a near-perfect draft, and Kuharich is here to explain how.

First round

Taking Dorsey with the first pick was a no-brainer, but here's my question: What if he hadn't been there? What if Atlanta chose him with the third pick instead of quarterback Matt Ryan? Then what?

"We would've taken a defensive lineman or an offensive tackle," Kuharich said. "I don't want to get into it, but we also would've looked to trade out."

The Chiefs didn't look anywhere after Dorsey fell to them, and why should they? When I spoke to Kuharich months ago, he was drooling over the guy -- lamenting only that he wouldn't be there when the Chiefs picked.

As it turned out, he was.

"We didn't send in the card right away because if somebody got ridiculous we could move back," Kuharich said. "But we wouldn't go beyond 10. So we weren't fielding calls from anybody below New Orleans, and New Orleans called to offer us their first and seventh this year and their first in '09.

"That was an easy 'no.'

"We got calls from New England, too, though I didn't know who they wanted. In our opinion, it was either (Vernon) Gholston or Dorsey, but it might've been somebody else. Anyway, it never got to the stage of 'What are you willing to pay?' We were focused on New Orleans, and when they came up short we just picked him."

To get Albert, the Chiefs moved up two spots from the 17th position. Kansas City needs offensive linemen like Arizona needs water, and with Albert and tackle Jeff Otah still there at 15, the Chiefs couldn't afford to wait.

"Ryan Clady came off the board at 12, and that's where we figured the run on tackles would start," Kuharich said. "We knew Houston and Philadelphia wanted to get above us, but we didn't know whom they were looking for.

"We thought either (Chris) Williams or Otah was going to go to Chicago, and, as it turned out, it was Williams. So there were two (offensive linemen they were interested) left, and that's when it got a little dicey.

"We knew there were two teams behind us that wanted a tackle, and we knew there was a possibility Detroit wanted a tackle, too. So Arizona calls and says, 'Philadelphia has called to leap over you. What do you want to do to go up one spot?' That's when I told Carl to get on the phone with Matt Millen to see if we can get to 15.

"I was nervous about going one spot (to Arizona) because whoever's behind us could go to 15. So we cut the deal, and we got the guy we wanted."

Second round

Prior to the draft the Chiefs resolved with their first three choices to try to take an offensive lineman, a defensive lineman and a cornerback.

They had Dorsey, and they had Albert. That left a cornerback, with Flowers -- whom the Chiefs ranked no lower than 30th in this draft -- still on the board.

At the 35th spot, he was a slam dunk.

"It didn't take us long to make that pick," Kuharich said. "Nobody called to get up to that spot, and he's a Cover-Two corner. He fits what we're doing. So it was like, 'OK, he's the guy. Let's go.'"

Afterward, the Chiefs fielded calls from clubs below them wondering if they wanted to package two of their three third-round picks into a deal that would put them in the lower half of the second.

Kansas City declined.

"We were ahead of schedule," Kuharich said. "Plus, we felt the board was so good, we would wait until the next day. We had multiple positions and multiple players who were still there, so we were good with whatever came off."

Third round

With the first of their three third-round picks, the Chiefs chose Charles, mostly because they were surprised he was there. They were interested in him and Central Florida's Kevin Smith, but Smith disappeared at the top of the round, and the Chiefs figured Charles would follow.

He did, but not until they took him.

"It was easy, because we went by our board," Kuharich said. "Charles was our highest-rated player at a position we had not picked.

"It came down to how Charles fits us. He's a complementary back to Larry (Johnson) because he's a different style. He's a space runner. He's fast. He has good hands. He's productive. And we had him rated in the second round."

The Chiefs also considered Penn State linebacker Dan Connor at the 73rd spot but felt they were deeper at that position than running back.

"We have only three running backs on the roster, and all three of them got hurt," Kuharich said. "In the nine (second-day) picks we had, we were going to address a running back. So this was easy. We had the best running back on the board."

Three choices later, they had tight end Brad Cottam from Tennessee, a run blocker who should fit in nicely with the Chiefs' plan to hammer opponents with Johnson and, yes, Charles.

"We need a blocking tight end," Kuharich said. "Yes, he has some durability issues, but he immediately becomes Jason Dunn."

At the 82nd spot, the Chiefs found Morgan, and what looked like a good draft suddenly started shaping up as a bullet-proof one.

"He was our second safety behind (Kenny) Phillips," Kuharich said. "We liked this guy from a year ago when we were watching (their third-round choice) Tank Tyler. We were watching tape, and number 7 kept showing up.

"I remember Herm asking, 'Who's this number seven?' And. I said, 'Don't worry about it. We'll talk about him next year.'

"He's not Bob Sanders, but he has Bob Sanders qualities. He's a ferocious tackler. He loves the game. He has passion. He throws his body around. He's tough. He's physical. But in no way is he a reflection of what we feel about (Bernard) Pollard or (Jarrad) Page.

"He's going to be a good special teams player, and he was the highest rated player on our board. There were other positions equally valued, but we had him rated at the bottom of the second round, and we were at the bottom of the third."

Fourth round

I don't know much about Missouri wide receiver Will Franklin, other than he caught a lot of passes (48) his junior year and is someone who can stretch the field -- both of which are why the Chiefs were interested.

"He has 4.37 speed and good hands," Kuharich said. "There were four or five receivers we were talking about at that time, but in their offense -- which was a spread offense -- he was productive, and he's a home-run threat because of his speed.

"At the end of the discussion, with the other wide receivers that were there, we were looking for someone who could stretch the field. His value was that he fit that criterion."

Fifth round

Of all the Chiefs picks, cornerback Brandon Carr might've been the closest to a reach. But Kansas City had him placed in the fifth round, loved his size (he's 6-feet, 207 pounds) and felt he fit its defense. When Edwards spoke up for Carr, he was chosen.

"This is someone whom Matt Littlefield, our area scout, found," Kuharich said. "He's a physical, Cover-Two corner who's a very good tackler and is very, very smart.

"We brought him in (prior to the draft), and Herm quizzed him about angles, pedal and 'windows' in the Cover-Two; how you open your hips, and what you look for in crossing routes coming the other way and so forth. And he nailed it.

"So he understands football, and he understands coverages. We hope we found Herm Two."

Kansas City considered other options here, like another wide receiver or offensive tackle. In the end, the Chiefs settled on Carr because they didn't trust the competition to stay away from him.

"We were afraid to go in the sixth with him because that's when people tend to go scattershot on players," Kuharich said. "We had him rated here, so we said, 'Let's take him.'"

Sixth round

I admit it -- I didn't know much about sixth-rounders Barry Richardson and Kevin Robinson, either. Richardson is a tackle from Clemson; Robinson a wide receiver/kick returner from Utah State. Both fill needs, and I'll let Kuharich explain.

"Richardson was a left tackle, but he's going to be right tackle for us, Kuharich said. "He's a massive man who is more of a run blocker. He can knock you off the ball, but he needs to grow as a pass blocker.

"He fits what we're going to do as a power team, with moving people off the ball, and he has a chance at right tackle. We don't have anyone penciled in there, so he's going to compete for the position."

And Robinson?

"He had eight touchdowns by returns in career, four on punt returns and four on kickoffs," Kuharich said. "He was the star of a team that struggled offensively, and they tried to get him the ball any way they could -- with hitches, slants, double reverses.

"He has marginal speed but really good quickness and a strong lower body to break tackles. What sold me on him was at the East-West game he returned a punt 70 yards and caught a touchdown pass. He showed the same things that game that he showed on his college tape, and we need to find a punt and kickoff returner."

Seventh round

With defensive end Brian Johnston and tight end Mike Merritt, the Chiefs put an exclamation point to one of their best drafts ever. Johnston is a pass rusher they hope can become the next Jimmy Wilkerson; Merritt could be the fourth tight end on a team that may, just may, play without a fullback.

"In my 22 years (in the NFL) the only draft (I've been involved with) that compares to this was when I was with New Orleans, and we had Willie Roaf and Irv Smith in the first round (1993)," Kuharich said.

"We also got Lorenzo Neal; Derek Brown, who became our leading rusher in 1994; and Tyrone Hughes, who was Devin Hester before Devin Hester. We didn't have 12 draft choices then. We had eight. But we had two No. 1s, and that puts you ahead of schedule. And that's what happened this year."

DaKCMan AP
05-01-2008, 12:45 PM
http://www.chiefsplanet.com/BB/showthread.php?t=184103

Direckshun
05-01-2008, 12:46 PM
Thank yooooooooooooooooooou.

Mods close plz.

Dartgod
05-01-2008, 01:05 PM
I missed it the first time around. Thanks for posting it.

siberian khatru
05-01-2008, 01:07 PM
If "Hard Knocks" had covered this, Carl Peterson would've been seen on the phone in an empty office, talking like a big shot to a dialtone.

CosmicPal
05-01-2008, 01:11 PM
I missed it the first time around. Thanks for posting it.

Same here...I missed it as well and I'm glad you posted it. Great article.

Molitoth
05-01-2008, 01:15 PM
I missed it the first time around. Thanks for posting it.

Likewise.

Screw you Repost police. :evil:

ArrowheadHawk
05-01-2008, 01:18 PM
That was a pretty good read. I don't think that we should call for threads to be closed when the search function is not working.

pr_capone
05-01-2008, 01:21 PM
Seventh round

With defensive end Brian Johnston and tight end Mike Merritt, the Chiefs put an exclamation point to one of their best drafts ever. Johnston is a pass rusher they hope can become the next Jimmy Wilkerson; Merritt could be the fourth tight end on a team that may, just may, play without a fullback.


:spock:

Aiming for mediocrity?

ct
05-01-2008, 01:24 PM
:spock:

Aiming for mediocrity?

Setting the stage for exceeding expectations, and makes em all look good.

Hog Farmer
05-01-2008, 01:36 PM
They let Wilkerson walk and their hoping for someone to come in and be as good as him!!!!!:doh!:

Chiefnj2
05-01-2008, 01:47 PM
The tidbits that I found interesting:

"Prior to the draft the Chiefs resolved with their first three choices to try to take an offensive lineman, a defensive lineman and a cornerback. "

"Charles was our highest-rated player at a position we had not picked."
"The Chiefs also considered Penn State linebacker Dan Connor at the 73rd spot but felt they were deeper at that position than running back. "

Frosty
05-01-2008, 01:56 PM
If "Hard Knocks" had covered this, Carl Peterson would've been seen on the phone in an empty office, talking like a big shot to a dialtone.

I wish they were doing Hard Knocks for the upcoming season instead of last season. It would be a lot more interesting with all of the youth.

Mr. Flopnuts
05-01-2008, 01:58 PM
:spock:

Aiming for mediocrity?

Anytime a 7th round draft choice makes the roster, it's a success.

FD
05-01-2008, 02:14 PM
I wish they were doing Hard Knocks for the upcoming season instead of last season. It would be a lot more interesting with all of the youth.

I wish they did it every year.