Mock draft season is fully upon us, and every Monday leading up to the 2023 NFL Draft our Brendan Dzwierzynski will round up NFL mock drafts from around the internet and let you know who the experts, analysts and fans think the Kansas City Chiefs will select this year.
Draft month is finally here, and as pro days continue around the country we’re getting an even clearer picture of how this year’s draft could pan out, or at least who may be on which teams’ boards. With that in mind, let’s take a look at one possible set of outcomes for the Chiefs later this month: trade-up scenarios.
Chiefs general manager Brett Veach has a penchant for getting aggressive with his picks, including a move up in the first round last year to snag cornerback Trent McDuffie (that one worked out pretty well). With the 31st pick in the first round this year, which players could Kansas City try to vault up to get, and how far would it be willing to go?
Chiefs receive: Pick No. 26
Cowboys receive: Picks No. 31, 134 (4th round)
You can make the argument that a long-term option at receiver is the Chiefs’ biggest need right now. Look at how much frustration there’s been about the position this offseason, then look at how Kansas City’s 2024 roster is shaping up right now. It’s quite bleak in terms of pass catchers. Jordan Addison was one of college football’s best receivers (when healthy) over the last two years, and could be that long-term piece the Chiefs need. He wouldn’t add much size at all to that room, but Patrick Mahomes has made that work plenty of times before. And if all it takes to move up six spots is a late fourth rounder? That’s a golden situation.
Chiefs receive: Pick No. 25
Giants receive: Picks No. 31, 122 (4th round), 250 (7th round)
A little pricier to move up with the PFF simulator, but it’s still not too much to get into the mid 20s of the first round. It was extremely tempting to take Utah tight end Dalton Kincaid in this spot, but instead we’re going to shore up the defensive line with Clemson’s Bryan Bresee. EDGE is a bigger need than an IDL, but you can’t go wrong with talent anywhere on the defensive line, especially when you consider Bresee’s pass-rush prowess from the interior. Bresee, George Karlaftis and Chris Jones (assuming he gets a new extension) is an encouraging long-term core for the defensive front.
Chiefs receive: Picks No. 23, 211 (6th round)
Vikings receive: Picks No. 31, 95 (3rd round), 250 (7th round)
Our highest mock draft move up yet, Wright played against the best defensive conference in the country while at Tennessee, where he also anchored a line for one of the best offenses in the country. He posted phenomenal athletic testing numbers, and according to Kent Lee Platte’s Relative Athletic Score his athletic profile compares to the likes of Jason Peters and Chad Clifton, among others. That’s good company. Lance Zierlein of NFL.com said Wright’s technique is a concern, but the Chiefs shouldn’t be too worried about that when you employ Andy Heck, one of the NFL’s best offensive line coaches. Finding your starting right tackle for, hopefully, the next five years is worth dumping a third-round pick.
OPTION 4 – 2ND ROUND
Chiefs receive: Pick No. 52 (2nd round)
Seahawks receive: Pick Nos. 63 (2nd round), 122 (4th round), 166 (5th round)
With all due to respect to stealing Jordan Addison in our first mock draft in this post, this feels like a dream scenario for the Chiefs. We ended up still getting Wright without moving up this time around, then leapt in front of the pass rusher-starved Chicago Bears to take K-State’s Felix Anudike-Uzomah in the second round. The Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year can be the rotational EDGE that Kansas City needs right away and a future starter (it’s certainly possible he takes the job right off the rip, too). Moving fourth and fifth-round picks when you have one to spare in each round is a smart business decision when it results in getting a talent like Anudike-Uzomah.