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P-izza O-ver E-verything
Posted By ChiefsWarpath.com On May 4, 2012 @ 5:17 pm In Commentary | Comments Disabled
First, on behalf of Chiefs Nation, I would like to extend my condolences to the family of Junior Seau, formerly of the San Diego Chargers, Miami Dolphins, and the New England Patriots. But, to Chiefs Nation he only played for one team, the San Diego Chargers. The “Tasmanian Devil,” as he was known, terrorized the Chiefs and the entire AFC West division for 13 years, from 1990-2002. He will be talked about for ages.
Regarding the 2012 NFL Draft, it went something like this;
“With the 11th pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the Kansas City Chiefs select, Dontari Poe, nose tackle, Memphis,” those were the words of “RG1,” the NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell when he announced the first selection for the Kansas City Chiefs in this year’s draft.
Immediately, Chiefs fans everywhere screamed fraud. I agree with Sam Mellinger, who I will quote again in this article, who said that “any-major-instant-reaction-is-overreaction.” Think about it Chiefs fans, it was a must to address the defensive line as much, if not more than, any other area of the team. Do you agree?
This new addition to the Chiefs defensive line stands at 6’3”, and weighs a slim 346 lbs., who ran a blistering 4.91 seconds in the 40-yard dash, a 4.56 in the 20-yard shuffle, and benched pressed 225 lbs. a whopping 44 times. With his performance at the NFL Combine, Poe has been documented as the strongest athlete in the 2012 NFL draft, and his 44 reps ranks 3rd in combine history. Although the Chiefs were without draft specialist, Phil Emory, Chiefs Director of Scouting from 2009-2011, they still managed to select a draft class full of POE-tential. Emory was lured to the Chicago Bears in 2012 as their new General Manager.
And for the first time since Dick Vermeil was the head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs from ’01 to ‘05, I feel really good about the Kansas City Chiefs. I feel that the Chiefs will climb into the playoffs AND proceed past the first round. Since January 16, 1994, when the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Houston Oilers 28-20 in Houston, the Chiefs haven’t won a playoff game. The Chiefs have been very consistent with being one-and-done in the NFL playoffs. I believe that this year will be different.
The 2012 NFL draft witnessed 65 underclassmen declared eligible, as opposed to the 56 declared in 2011. And with the arrival of Peyton Manning into the AFC West division, this year’s draft saw the Chiefs, Chargers, and Raiders draft mostly defensive players.
We begin with the San Diego Chargers, whose first three picks were all defensive players. The Chargers selected linebacker Melvin Ingram, a standout at South Carolina with its first pick (18th overall), followed by defensive tackle Kendall Reyes of the University of Connecticut with its second pick (49th overall), and safety Brandon Taylor of LSU with its third pick (78th overall).
Next, the Oakland Raiders were awarded compensatory selections at the end of the third, fourth, and fifth rounds of the 2012 draft (because they had no draft picks in the first five rounds). With a total of six draft picks, the Raiders selected four defensive players. The post-Al Davis regime drafted LB Miles Burris (4th round, 129th overall) from San Diego State, DE Jack Crawford (5th round, 158th overall) from Penn State, DT Christo Bilukidi (6th round, 189th overall) from Georgia State, and LB Nathan Stupar (7th round, 230th overall) from Penn State.
On the home front, the Chiefs addressed its most pressing need in the draft when they selected a nose tackle from the University of Memphis named Dontari Poe (P-izza O-ver E-verything) (1st round, 11th overall). Then in the fourth and seventh rounds the Chiefs added two more defensive players when they drafted DB Dequan Menzie out of the University of Alabama (4th round, 146th overall), and DT Jerome Long out of San Diego State University (7th round, 218th overall).
The best way to describe this year’s draft picks is to again quote Kansas City Star’s columnist, Sam Mellinger, “My own thoughts about the Poe pick haven’t changed much since Thursday night, when I saw it as very un-Pioli like, and encouraging for what it represented……..this one is on coach Romeo Crennel as much as Pioli, though, because Romeo’s background is coaching the defensive line and Poe is a raw nose tackle with an enormous gap between what he is now and what he may someday become. Most everything Pioli did in the draft makes plain sense. My only nitpicking is I wish they’d have taken an inside linebacker instead of one of the offensive linemen — filling a bigger hole, especially in the short-term — but I also understand that the way the draft played out, there may not have been a great time for the Chiefs to do it.”
With that being said, here is a quick look at the Chiefs 2012 draft class according to the Chiefs 2012 Draft Packet @ kchchiefs.com:
First Round, 11th overall, DT, Dontari Poe, Memphis
6’3”, 346 lbs.
Dontari Poe was a band member until a coach convinced him to play football in the 9th grade. With his anchor strength, big hands and two‐gap ability, Poe has the “motor” to collapse the pocket and more than enough leg drive to walk blockers back into the quarterback or quickly neutralize lead blockers trying to widen the rush lanes. While he certainly can be a dominant force occupying multiple blockers as a nose guard, teams must also consider utilizing that initial quickness he displays as an “under” tackle in a 4-3 alignment or having him seal off the outside running paths as an end in a 3-4 scheme.
Second Round, 44th overall, OT, Jeff Allen, Illinois
6’4”, 306 lbs.
A model of consistency for the Illini since moving into the starting lineup as a freshman, Allen quietly went about his job of neutralizing edge rushers and clearing out running lanes for Illinois ball carriers while running his consecutive starts string to 47 games at the demanding left offensive tackle position. He shows quick feet, good knee bend and the ability to fire off the snap with explosion.
Third Round, 74th overall, OT, Donald Stephenson, Oklahoma
6’6”, 307 lbs.
Stephenson is a tackle, but he can play both sides. He’s played left tackle at Oklahoma for (Head Coach Bob) Stoops. But his experience is mostly left tackle. This is a young player with only two years of college experience. Having depth at this position is only going to help us, God forbid something happens. We’re starting to create more depth along the football team.
*Donald Stephenson: “It’s a great experience right now. I’m speechless. I love the Chiefs. I’ve always loved them. To have a chance to play in my hometown is huge.”
Fourth Round, 107th overall, WR, Devon Wylie, Fresno State
5’9”, 186 lbs.
Wylie has done his homework. He can play both split end and flanker, in addition to seeing action in the slot. He knows NFL teams travel with four or five receivers, one of whom handles kick and punt returns. He also knows NFL teams covet speed, so he has worked on his technique and explosion. The speed he had in his junior year has returned. Wylie said he’s been hand-timed in a sub 4.3 in the 40.
Fifth Round, 146th overall, DB, Dequan Menzie, Alabama
6’0”, 198 lbs.
*Dequan Menzie was Javier Arenas’ replacement at Alabama.
Sixth Round, 182nd overall, RB, Cyrus Gray, Texas A&M
5’10”, 198 lbs.
While Gray appeared in 49 games for the Aggies, the senior finished his career as the school’s third-leading rusher with 3,298 yards and 632 carries, tying for seventh all-time with 30 touchdowns. Unselfish to a fault, he accomplished those figures while starting 29 contests. Gray closed out his career ninth in team annals with 103 receptions. Adding to his resume, he is A&M’s career-record holder with 2,349 yards gained via kickoff returns. His low center of gravity and leg drive saw him find the end zone to the tune of 236 points, ninth-best in Aggies history.
The tailback amassed 6,423 all-purpose yards, the third‐best total in Big 12 Conference history. Among active NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision performers, he ranks ninth in rushing attempts, 13th in rushing yardage, 18th in rushing touchdowns, seventh in all-purpose plays (834), fifth in all-purpose yardage , 12th in kickoff returns (99) and kickoff return yardage. His 38 total touchdowns tied Notre Dame wide receiver Michael Floyd and San Diego State tailback Ronnie Hillman for second among active NCAA FBS players.
Seventh Round, 218th overall, DT, Jerome Long, San Diego St.
6’5”, 285 lbs.
Long was selected to the All-Mountain West Conference Second Team for the 2011 season by eight head coach and select media members … Ranked second on the team in tackles (69), tackles for a loss (8.0) and sacks (5.0) … Had three games with 10 or more tackles, ranking second in the Mountain West Conference among defensive lineman with 5.8 stops per game, and finished the season with career-high marks in all major defensive categories.
Seventh Round, 238th overall, WR, Kenneth Hemingway, Jr., Michigan
6’1”, 222 lbs.
Four-year letterman … appeared in 48 games; started 31 contests at wide receiver … 1,638 career receiving yards rank 17th in school history … six career 100-yard games are tied for ninth at Michigan … eclipsed 1,000 career receiving yards against Notre Dame (Sept. 10, 2011).
Three things that I would like to mention really quick; Devon Wiley missed a year of college football due to an ankle injury that may resurface, Dequan Menzie has only played two years of Division I football, and Donald Stephenson is from Blue Springs, Missouri and a life long Chiefs fan.
Finally, I must say that I am impressed with this year’s draft class, especially the additions of Cyrus Gray, Junior Hemingway, and Devon Wylie, a prototype of Wes Welker. The Chiefs will be underrated as usual this season, but all indications point to a solid football team with some depth that is definitely playoff bound despite the addition of the Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning. Chiefs Nation has a lot to be excited about in 2012.
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