The Kansas City Chiefs offseason work continued tonight when they drafted Dee Ford with the 23rd overall pick in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.
This is an absolutely fantastic pick by the Chiefs. I have spoken very highly of Ford in previous articles, and believe Ford could really make a difference on the Chiefs defense. Ford may have been my favorite player in this draft and after some time in the Chiefs’ system, I think you will see why.
How he fits in
A defensive end out of Auburn, Dee Ford is a bit undersized for his position at 6-foot-2, 252 pounds. Ford could make the transition linebacker, just as Tamba Hali did early in his career, and be a real force off of the edge to help provide depth on the blitz alongside Hali and Justin Houston. Ford has been tested a lot in the tough SEC which should give him the confidence to rely in his abilities to jump in right away and make an impact for the Chiefs come fall.
Ford may not have been the popular pick left on the board with fans while Kelvin Benjamin and Jason Verrett remained undrafted, but with Tamba Hali’s age increasing and after seeing the lack of production rushing the quarterback when Hali and Justin Houston went down with injuries, Ford is a very smart pick by General Manager John Dorsey. I don’t see a strong future for Ford if the Chiefs choose to keep him at defensive end. With the strong offensive line of Denver, and Denver being the team the Chiefs are chasing in the AFC West, the Chiefs will need to bolster their pass rush in order to compete and secure a spot in the 2014 playoffs.
A strong need
The Chiefs proved last year that they can compete with teams in a shootout and score enough points to stay in the game. However, in the second half of the season, the defense failed to keep them in the game and was unable to put much pressure at all on the opposing team’s quarterback and gave him time to find the open man. With the addition of Dee Ford, the Chiefs reinforce their ability to get after the quarterback at hopefully the same level they started off the 2013 season.
Dee Ford may have been a surprise pick too many. He went unnoticed with all of the talent in the draft, so he may be disappointing to some. It surprised me a bit that the Chiefs would pass up on wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin since I thought he would be picked 22nd overall by Philadelphia before they traded the pick, and then with cornerbacks Jason Verrett and Darqueze Dennard also on the board I assumed one of those three players would be drafted by the Chiefs.
Dee Ford is a quality player and could be the missing piece for the Chiefs’ front seven.
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