Disclaimer: Read this and enjoy for the sole purpose of entertainment. I am one person doing these write-ups on all 32 teams. I'm going to miss some things on your team so feel free to chime in and provide some insight.
You're the GM of...the Kansas City Chiefs
We have a new pilot at the helm now that we've traded our second this year, and a conditional second next year, for QB Alex Smith. I know some fans aren't happy with this move, but I must respectfully disagree with their opinion. One of the top qualities I look for in a quarterback is the ability to win big games and Smith has shown he can do just that. During the 2011 playoffs, he had the Niners in position to make the Super Bowl only to be foiled by the special teams unit that fumbled away that chance. Smith is still a young player and he is more mobile than many realize. With Andy Reid in at head coach, he could really blossom into a very good quarterback.
Moving to how our offensive line is shaping up...
the team decided to use the franchise tag on left tackle Brandon Albert before I showed up. I agree with that move completely. I don't like the idea of letting good players just walk out the door. The move I don't agree with is the release of right tackle Eric Winston. He wasn't a pro bowl tackle, but he was solid and his release, to me, is just not a strategic move. With him on the team, the Chiefs could look at a few different positions in the draft with the first overall pick. Now with his release and our left tackle on a one-year rental, we almost have to select an offensive tackle with our first round pick. If we decided on an offensive tackle in the first with Winston still on the team, we could have attempted to trade Albert and maybe recoup the second round pick we traded away for Alex Smith. We also could have rid ourselves of that massive cap hit that comes with using the franchise tag. I think a team like Arizona would have given up their second rounder and change for him as they desperately need quality on their o-line. Winston simply gave this team more flexibility that is now lost, but the situation is what it is so we move on. At guard, Ryan Lilja has announced his retirement and his backup doesn't inspire us so we need to find a starter on the inside. We're solid at center with Rodney Hudson, but depth is a bit of an issue.
As far as Alex Smith's fellow skill players, a deal has been reached with Dwayne Bowe so we at least locked up our top receiver to give Smith a quality target. We also still have former first round pick Jon Baldwin on the other side of him. We've padded our depth with the signing of Donnie Avery. For tight end, we have a budding youngster in Kevin Moiaki, but we like having a veteran presence and after releasing Kevin Boss we brought in Anthony Fasano. Fasano is a strong blocker and has been under-utilized in the passing game by his former teams. As far as the guys being handed the ball, we have an exlosive running back with Jamaal Charles, but Peyton Hillis won't be back with the team so we need another quality ball carrier.
Oh, where to begin. With the amount of high draft picks used on this defense, you'd think it would be all-world by now, but alas, our scouting department has let us down time after time. In fact, one of my first moves as GM would be to replace our scouts that have recommended the defensive linemen we've taken recently. In 2008, we used our first round pick (fifth overall) to draft Glenn Dorsey. He's never lived up to that billing. We let him walk as a free agent and he's now a member of the 49ers. Another high draft pick we selected to play defensive end in our 3-4 scheme is Tyson Jackson. We used the third overall pick on him and he has been a major bust. Over his four years, he has recorded a total of five sacks. Before I became GM, the Chiefs decided renegotiate his contract and keep him. I guess that's one of the reasons I was brought in because I can think of several, reasonably priced veterans that could easily equal or top that production. Well, he's here so at least he's depth if nothing else, but obviously, defensive end is a huge need (see, we could have used that second rounder I would have received from a Brandon Albert trade!). We have solidified one defensive end position by bringing in Mike DeVito, but another starter and quality depth are a must. At nose tackle, we have last year's first round pick Dontari Poe. He wasn't anything special in his debute, but I like his upside. He's a massive man with exceptional athleticism. Hopefully another year in our strength and conditioning program turn him into the monster his physique shows he could be.
Turning to the back eight, we're looking good at outside linebacker with Tamba Hali and Justin Houston. On this inside, former first round pick Derrick Johnson seems to get better every year, but we do need to bring in another inside backer after the tragedy that happened last year with Jovan Belcher. In the secondary, we needed to bring in someone to help on the other side of Brandon Flowers so we've agreed to terms with recently released Dunta Robinson. Not to stop there, we also decided to bring in another top free agent corner in Sean Smith. We're now stacked and ready for Manning! At safety, we have one of the best young stars in the league with Eric Berry and are solid at the other position.
On to the draft
As mentioned above, the release of Winston really puts us in a bind. Had we kept him and Brandon Albert, I would have been tempted to take the best defensive lineman in the draft, which, if his heart checks out ok, is Star Loutulelei in my opinion. Both Loutulelie and Poe can play defensive end or nose tackle, so we can see who plays which position best and go from there. It would have given us a lot of beef and a lot of flexibility at the defensive line. However, don't have Winston and we don't have draft picks for Albert so it's time to decide what to do with this pick. First thing we try to do is trade down, but with no superstar players in this year's draft, we won't find any trade partners. Based on our situation, there won't be much mystery with what position we're targeting. The only question is, will it be Luke Joekel or Eric Fisher. Joekel was the consensus best tackle in the draft until, perhaps, Senior Bowl week. During those practices, Eric Fisher stood out so much, he made teams go back and review tape on him. It's been reported that some teams moved him ahead of Joekel. So who are we picking? Well, with the first pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, the Kansas City Chiefs select, Luke Joekel, offensive tackle, Texas A&M. I decide to go with Joekel because the level of competition he faced in college was superior to Fisher. Fisher played at Central Michigan and although his tape is outstanding and he performed well against the top seniors at the Senior Bowl, I think Joekel is a bit safer having faced the best pass rushers in the SEC. I think we can now say that between Albert and Joekel, we have the best offensive tackle tandem in the league. We'll start Joekel at right tackle and keep Albert at left tackle for the year he's under the tag. In 2014, Albert walks and Joekel becomes the blind side protector.
We've used up our second round pick to bring in Alex Smith so we wait for round three to decide who else to draft. This year's class has a lot of depth at defensive tackle and offensive guard, which bodes well for us with our needs at those positions. With our third round pick, will go with DT Brandon Williams or if he's still there, DT Sylvester Williams. If neither is available, we'll look for guards/centers. In the fourth round, we'll look at Kevin Riddick or Jon Bostic at ILB. We'll continue with day 3 looking for defensive end depth as well as offensive line depth and a running back.