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Old 04-19-2005, 02:06 AM  
keg in kc keg in kc is offline
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Teicher: Chiefs will draft off the rack

Chiefs will draft off the rack

By ADAM TEICHER The Kansas City Star
Posted on Tue, Apr. 19, 2005

If the Chiefs had a motto for this year's draft, it might read something like this: “No projects, no insurance policies, just ready-made football players.”

In other words, their first pick can't be a Junior Siavii, last year's defensive tackle and someone they knew would take some time to develop. He can't be a Larry Johnson, who was drafted No. 1 in 2003 only because the Chiefs were uncertain about the future of halfback Priest Holmes.

He certainly can't be a Trezelle Jenkins, who took time to develop and still couldn't play once he did.

No, this might be the Chiefs' most important draft in years in terms of needing some players capable of helping right away. They must come up with at least one defensive player who can produce immediately and preferably more.

“Every draft you go through you hope has an immediate impact and a long-term impact,” coach Dick Vermeil said. “We'd like this draft to be a little more on the immediate side. It's because we're so close to being an outstanding football team if we can maintain what we've developed offensively. If we can clean up the problems we're having on defense with some additional players beyond what we've already done, then we've got a chance.

“You just feel that sense of urgency about our defense this year, more than there's been. I keep talking about that window being open and it's gradually closing. I'm referring to how long our offense can continue to produce as it has been producing, how long our offensive line can maintain the quality of play. If they can, it's pretty defined what we have to do and that's improve out defense.”

Vermeil had tried to downplay the fact he will probably retire at the end of the season, but that's a huge factor for the Chiefs. The Chiefs, likely to have a new coach and a new direction, could well be undertaking a massive rebuilding project next year, not unlike that of 2001 when they hired Vermeil.

“We're not all going to live forever,” said Lynn Stiles, the Chiefs' director of player personnel. “Coach Vermeil is talking about the possibilities of not being here (after this season). I personally have a sense of urgency because I want to make sure his last hurrah is a good one, if at all possible.”

It's almost a given the Chiefs, who have a shortage of healthy linebackers, will draft at the position in an early round. Texas' Derrick Johnson, generally considered the top linebacker in the draft, will probably be gone by the time the Chiefs choose with the 15th pick.

The Chiefs may consider a player like Georgia's Thomas Davis, who played both safety and linebacker in college.

The Chiefs will almost certainly draft a cornerback, particularly if they don't trade for Miami's Patrick Surtain. Auburn's Carlos Rogers could be available to them in the first round, and several others could be there in the second.

The Chiefs have some advice for the top two or three picks, no matter who they are or what position they play: Show up prepared for work.

“It's a critical draft for us, absolutely critical,” Stiles said. “The bottom dropped out of our defense some years ago, and it needs to be rectified.

“As best we can, we're going to try to find guys there (who are) ready to play. We wouldn't be selecting them if they didn't have the physical attributes. But even more than that, are they ready to come in and play? I know that's a hard call because how many college guys can step right in and play right away? So we have to look at a lot of factors. It's more than just evaluating the player. We also have to evaluate our system and the people working with them.

“None of these guys are going to be instant pudding. It's hard to match it up to fill a void or upgrade a position with a guy who can also come in and help out right away.”

After the first two or three rounds, the Chiefs aren't expecting to find immediate starters, though it would be nice to come up with late-round finds as they did with Scott Fujita and Jared Allen.

But after losing special-teams regulars in Monty Beisel, Derrick Blaylock and perhaps Fred Jones, the Chiefs could use some rookies to help in the kicking game.

“It's a successful draft for the Kansas City Chiefs if we can get three to four very strong contributors on defense or special teams,” Vermeil said.

DRAFT DINNER: The Chiefs' annual Red Coaters draft dinner is at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Arrowhead Stadium Pavilion. Vermeil and president/general manager Carl Peterson will speak on the draft and the upcoming season. Special guests will include two of the Chiefs' free-agent acquisitions, linebacker Kendrell Bell and safety Sammy Knight.

Tickets are $27 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. For reservations and further information, call Jayne Halterman of the Chiefs at (816) 920-4502.

HARTS AGREES TO SIGN: The Chiefs announced that reserve safety Shaunard Harts accepted his one-year, $656,000 contract offer. Harts has mainly been a backup in his three seasons with the Chiefs but started four games last year because of injuries to starters Greg Wesley and Jerome Woods.
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Old 04-19-2005, 02:10 AM   #2
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I think it's pretty funny to read this article a couple days after he (unfavorably) compared us to the Eagles because (he said) we draft too often for "immediate need".

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Old 04-19-2005, 02:11 AM   #3
Tribal Warfare Tribal Warfare is offline
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KC better get their ass in gear, and make a play for DJ on draft day.
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Old 04-19-2005, 06:38 AM   #4
KC Margarita Man KC Margarita Man is offline
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"It's a critical draft for us, absolutely critical," Stiles said, "The bottom dropped out of our defense some time ago, and it needs to be rectified."

Then why wait three years to do something about it? Lynn Stiles is a huge part of the problem We'd be better off if he caught the flu and couldn't be in the war room.
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Old 04-19-2005, 06:53 AM   #5
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New England drafts mostly projects. But they have a coaching staff that can get production out of their projects from day one. If the Chiefs had decent coaches, they wouldn't have to draft players "ready to play".
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Old 04-19-2005, 07:03 AM   #6
the Talking Can the Talking Can is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC Margarita Man
"It's a critical draft for us, absolutely critical," Stiles said, "The bottom dropped out of our defense some time ago, and it needs to be rectified."

Then why wait three years to do something about it? Lynn Stiles is a huge part of the problem We'd be better off if he caught the flu and couldn't be in the war room.
yeah, that's my question....why the **** didn't we do something last year you %^&*wad....
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:02 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yoswif
New England drafts mostly projects. But they have a coaching staff that can get production out of their projects from day one. If the Chiefs had decent coaches, they wouldn't have to draft players "ready to play".
I tend to disagree. On defense the Patriots take players who were solid in college. They tend not to get carried away about workouts; much like the Ravens.
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:13 AM   #8
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After reading this article, it looks like the Chiefs are finally getting it. I wish they would have had this attitude last year and the year before. Better late than never I guess.
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:19 AM   #9
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Does his mean no Safety to CB conversions this time around? That 3-5 year turn around on investment is just too damn costly.
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:32 AM   #10
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Glad to hear they are taking a more effective approach in the draft this year. There's still no guarantees, but there is definitely a higher probability we get a player that becomes a quality NFL player.
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:44 AM   #11
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Why isn't every draft critical?
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