This is part 2 in evaluating the Chiefs draft pick-by-pick (here's part 1). While it might not be fair to evaluate the Chiefs recent draft picks before they've even played a snap in the NFL, I think it's important to have a set of expectations for each player to base their future performance on. If we assume all Chiefs players are A's, then we might be disappointed when the sit the bench their first season with the team, and if we think that all picks after the third round aren't important, then we might be shocked when a player emerges that we never suspected would. So, by using this (possibly flawed) reasoning, we shall commence:
4th Round - Devon Wylie
There are two significantly different yet related characteristics when it comes to Wylie. One is that he is very fast - 4.39 40 yard dash fast. It's his speed and his size - Wylie is 5-9 and 186 lbs while Welker measures in at 5-9 and 185 lbs - that get him Wes Welker comparisons often; heck, Wylie is even wearing #83, which is Welker's number as well.
But the difference between Wylie and Welker is the ability to stay healthy. Never mind Welker's torn ACL in 2010, Welker has found a way to stay on the field in his other seasons. That's something that Wylie has struggled with, at least in college. Wylie is a slot receiver, and the usual result of a pass to a slot player is a big hit in the middle of the field. It's almost a guarantee you're going to get hit after catching the ball, the important thing is if you're able to get up after you get knocked down. Wylie doesn't give me much confidence that he can stay healthy, but with his speed, I'd love it if he could
Draft Grade: C+
5th Round - DeQuan Menzie
Menzie played the same position for the same team as Javier Arenas after Arenas's departure in 2010. Arenas was taken in the 2nd round, Menzie, as you can tell, fell to the 5th round. Menzie, however, also started opposite of Dre Kirkpatrick, who was drafted in the first round.
Menzie is looked upon as a developmental, yet instinctive player, who will be a good player in defensive subpackages that feature a number of defensive backs. Menzie also has decent size, standing 6-0 and weighing 198 lbs. It wasn't long ago that the Chiefs drafted a cornerback in the 5th round and about that same size that turned out to be pretty good (see Carr, Brandon 2008).
Draft Grade: B-
6th Round - Cyrus Gray
The last two drafts, I was wanting the Chiefs to draft a running back late in the draft. The team passed on that option last year, but chose to draft one this year. And that running back was Gray, who is coming off two back-to-back 1,000 rushing yard seasons at Texas A&M, plus catching 30+ passes over those two seasons as well.
Gray's use has yet to be determined, but I think he's going to get his opportunities early on. Jamaal Charles is coming off an injury, and recently required Peyton Hillis, not only being on a one-year deal, dealt with his share of injuries last season as well. And for Dexter McCluster, I'm not entirely convinced the Chiefs have figured out how to use him. With all these factors, Gray might see some playing time this coming season, and a significant amount in the future.
Draft Grade: A-
7th Round - Jerome Long
Long will be fighting for a roster spot as a defensive end in the Chiefs 3-4 defense. Standing 6-5 and weighing 285 lbs., he'll probably be a speed rushing type that the Chiefs bring in on obvious passing downs to get after the passer. He'll probably take Wallace Gilberry's roster spot - who, if you believe Twitter, found out about the Chiefs not retaining him when first round pick, Dontari Poe, tweeted that he'd be #92, the number Gilberry was last season. Ouch.
Draft Grade: C
7th Round - Junior Hemingway
Recently called a "steal" by Mel Kiper of ESPN, Hemingway's biggest test as a wide receiver with the Chiefs is going to be where to fit. With Dwayne Bowe (we'll assume for now that he'll play next season), Jon Baldwin, Steve Breaston and now Devon Wylie looking to be the four receivers in set, Hemingway will most likely have to earn his roster spot via special teams. I hope Kiper is right and that Hemingway can help cement a very good receiving corps. After all, he has good size at 6-1 222 lbs., the only issue with a 7th round pick is if he can catch well enough to stick through training camp.
Draft Grade: B