The Kansas City Chiefs selected 10 players in the 2022 NFL Draft last week, adding talent on both sides of the football while earning high marks from the various experts around the web.
The folks at Pro Football Focus gave Kansas City an "A+" grade, making the Chiefs one of only three teams to earn such a mark. Elsewhere, Chad Reuter from NFL.com assigned the Chiefs an “A” grade while The Ringer's Danny Kelly gave Kansas City one of only four "A+" grades.
Here's what Kelly wrote about the Chiefs’ class:
"The Chiefs knocked it out of the park over the weekend, seemingly finding value with every pick they made. Kansas City general manager Brett Veach gave his defense a much-needed infusion of talent in Round 1, moving up a few spots to take a versatile cornerback in Washington's Trent McDuffie before staying at no. 30 to take Purdue edge rusher George Karlaftis. I loved that Kansas City came out of the second round with Western Michigan receiver Skyy Moore, who should soak up targets in the short and intermediate passing game and make life easier for Patrick Mahomes. Cincinnati safety Bryan Cook is a hard-hitting defender with excellent tackling chops and plenty of range. And Wisconsin linebacker Leo Chenal might end up being an absolute steal: He's big, physical, extremely athletic and brings a fiery demeanor to the field. Keep an eye on Fayetteville State corner Joshua Williams, too: He's long, quick-footed, and fluid in coverage."
With all of that in mind, here are some quick facts about each of the Chiefs' selections.
1. Cornerback Trent McDuffie allowed the fewest receiving yards in the FBS last year.
McDuffie, who the Chiefs selected at No. 21 overall, yielded just 16 catches for an FBS-low 111 yards last season (min. 30 targets). He also allowed the fewest yards-per-target in the FBS (3.1) and didn't allow a touchdown in each of the last two seasons.
Here's what PFF wrote about McDuffie:
"While it required a trade-up, Trent McDuffie is a great addition for the Chiefs at No. 21 overall. McDuffie was the 11th-ranked player overall on PFF's big board and had one of the best careers PFF College has ever seen. He turned in an 80.0-plus grade as a true freshman, sophomore and junior, something just one other Power Five corner has accomplished in the PFF College era. He may be small, but he possesses elite awareness and top-notch athleticism and is a physical tackler. McDuffie has all the traits to be a versatile chess piece for Kansas City."
For more on McDuffie, click here.
2. Edge-rusher George Karlaftis is a versatile iron man who racked up 54 pressures in 2021.
Karlaftis, the No. 30 overall selection on Thursday night, tallied 30.5 tackles-for-loss and 14.5 sacks during his 27 career games with the Boilermakers. He was particularly effective last season, recording 54 total pressures while playing at least 49 snaps in all but one game. He also showcased the ability to play as an interior rusher when asked to do so at Purdue.
Here's more on Karlaftis from PFF:
"Karlaftis' slide ends with the Chiefs at 30th overall, making him the biggest steal of Round 1. He turned in a 90.6 pass-rush grade as one of the few game-wreckers in college football last season. Also known as the college football Greek Freak, the 6-foot-4, 266-pounder boasts some of the best hand usage in the class and plays with big-time power and an impressive get-off. Karlaftis posted the fourth-best win rate in the Power Five on true pass rushes this past season despite being consistently chipped, doubled and cut."
For more on Karlaftis, click here.
3. Wide receiver Skyy Moore broke the most tackles of any receiver in the nation last season.
The Chiefs selected Moore with the No. 54 overall pick after the former Western Michigan star hauled in 94 receptions for 1,291 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2021. He ranked ninth in the FBS in receptions, spending time both outside (265) and in the slot (140 snaps) while becoming one of only five players in the FBS to average at least 7.9 catches-per-game. Additionally, Moore was one of only four players with 95+ catches, 1,200+ yards and 10+ scores.
PFF had the following to say about Kansas City's newest offensive weapon:
"Skyy Moore was a first-round prospect in PFF's eyes, once again giving the Chiefs one of the biggest steals of the NFL draft. The highest-graded wide receiver of the 2021 college football season wasn't any of the Power Five top prospects — it was Western Michigan's Skyy Moore. The 5-foot-10, 195-pound receiver's 26 broken tackles after the catch tied for the most among wide receivers in 2021, and he ranked in the 95th percentile in separation percentage. Despite his smaller stature, Moore had no issue handling press coverage on the outside, ranking top-five in yards per route run on those reps last season at 3.58. The cherry on top is his strong hands — the Western Michigan pass-catcher checked in with the largest hands of anyone at the Combine (10.25 inches) and dropped just three of his 125 targets in 2021 while catching eight of his 13 contested opportunities."
For more on Moore, click here.
4. Safety Bryan Cook missed only seven tackles on 100 attempts last season.
The 6-foot-1, 206-pound Cook wraps up the ball-carrier when given the opportunity. He missed only seven tackles on 100 attempts last year, routinely coming out on top in one-on-one situations.
He was also a true hybrid defender at Cincinnati, impressing against both the run and the pass. In fact, his snap counts last season were split almost exactly down the middle. He recorded 451 snaps in coverage, where he forced the ninth-most incompletions among all safeties (7), and 444 snaps against the run, tallying the eighth-most run stops (25) of any safety. Cook was one of only four defensive backs in the FBS to tally 95+ tackles and 10+ passes defensed in 2021.
For more on Cook, click here.
5. Linebacker Leo Chenal is one of the most athletic players at his position in quite a while.
The 6-foot-3, 250-pound Chenal was among the most productive defenders in the nation last year, racking up 115 tackles, 18.5 tackles-for-loss, eight sacks and two forced fumbles. He finished No. 7 in the FBS in tackles-per-game (10.4) and No. 2 in tackles-for-loss-per-game (1.6), earning "Big 10 Linebacker of the Year" and First-Team All-American honors following the season. Chenal was one of only two FBS players with 115+ tackles and 18.0+ tackles-for-loss in 2021, and he did all of that despite missing the first two games of the year.
He's a tremendous athlete, too. One metric that helps illustrate Chenal's value is "Relative Athletic Score," which represents a composite of a player's various athletic testing results. In the case of Chenal, on a scale that ranged from one to 10, he scored a ridiculous 9.99. It was the third-best score for any linebacker prospect since 1987.
Here's what PFF wrote about Chenal following the draft:
"Kansas City gets an absolute steal here with Leo Chenal in the third round. Chenal packs a punch as a downhill player, as he can light up offensive linemen with ease. His 94.1 run-defense grade wasn't too far behind Micah Parsons' (94.8) PFF college record. He finished the pre-draft process as PFF's No. 36 overall player."
For more on Chenal, click here.
6. Cornerback Joshua Williams was the first HBCU player to be drafted since 2020.
Williams attended Fayetteville State University, where he tallied 24 passes defensed over the course of his last 20 games. That performance – in addition to his showing at the Senior Bowl as one of only a few Division-II players in attendance – caught the attention of the Chiefs, who made Williams the No. 135 overall pick in this year's class. His selection marked the first from a Historically Black College or University since 2020, and the highest since 2019.
Williams is intriguing because of his exceptional size and length for the position. He stands at 6-foot-3, 195 pounds and has long arms at 32 7/8 inches, prompting NFL.com's Lance Zierlein to write the following in his pre-draft profile:
"Small-school cornerback with big-school traits and talent. Williams is long-limbed with the versatility and talent to play in any coverage…His size, length and ball skills stand out on tape and make it easier to project success as a competitive, downfield cover man in time."
For more on Williams, click here.
7. Offensive lineman Darian Kinnard was the top tackle in the SEC last season.
A large dude at 6-foot-5 and 345 pounds, Kinnard won the Jacobs Blocking Trophy last year as the top offensive lineman in the SEC. A mainstay at right tackle for Kentucky over the last three seasons, Kinnard recorded 109 knockdowns in that time while earning the top career PFF grade of any SEC tackle.
As far as value is concerned, Kinnard also has a chance to be one of the steals of the draft at pick No. 145. In fact, based on the metric below, he was considered the seventh-best value selection across the entirety of draft weekend.
Kinnard possesses the versatility to play either tackle or guard, and while there has been debate among draft analysts about where he'll end up in the NFL, Senior College Scouting Executive Pat Sperduto provided some insight into the Chiefs' thinking on Saturday:
"Personally, I like him as a right tackle, and I think with [Offensive Line] Coach [Andy] Heck's coaching, [he can work on] some of the little things that he maybe needs to fine‐tune," Sperduto said. "You have to realize that he's obviously a really good football player. He's All‐SEC, he's an All‐American, a multiple-year starter at Kentucky, a top recruit. He's a big, massive man with long arms and it's just the little things [that he needs to work on]. That's where Coach Heck comes into play. I think we can work him as a right tackle. If we needed to, we could put him in at guard, but I think his first spot is going to be right tackle. That's on Coach Heck, it would be up to him and nobody else, him and Coach Reid."
For more on Kinnard, click here.
8. Cornerback Jaylen Watson is another long, physical player with ideal traits.
The No. 243 overall selection in this year's draft, Watson earned All-Pac-12 Honorable Mention recognition in each of his two seasons at Washington State. Like Joshua Williams, Watson is interesting because of his ideal size for the position. He checks in at 6-foot-3 and 204 pounds with 32 ¼ inch arms, adding yet another long defender to the Chiefs' secondary.
He's still a raw player, but The Athletic's Dane Brugler believes that Watson has the physical tools to stick around. Here's more from Brugler's draft guide:
"He is a good-sized athlete with the speed, strength and swagger that NFL teams covet at the position…Overall, Watson has only played 15 games at the FBS level and it shows at times with his missteps, but his raw traits and instincts are enticing starter traits. He will be appealing to NFL teams that value big press corners."
For more on Watson, click here.
9. Tailback Isiah Pacheco ran a blazing 4.37 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Pacheco's 40-time was tied with South Dakota State's Pierre Strong for the fastest among all running backs at the NFL Combine earlier this year. To make that time even more impressive, Pacheco checks in at 5-foot-10 and 216 pounds with what's been described as a "ripped physique," according to Dane Brugler.
A three-year starter at Rutgers, Pacheco – who the Chiefs selected with the No. 251 overall pick – led the Scarlet Knights in rushing in each of the last three seasons. He recorded at least 500 rushing yards in all four of his years on campus, finishing his career at Rutgers with 2,442 yards and 18 touchdowns across 44 total games (34 starts). Additionally, according to Brugler, Pacheco possesses upside as a pass-blocker.
For more on Pacheco, click here.
10. Defensive back Nazeeh Johnson amassed a ton of experience at Marshall.
The No. 259 overall selection in this year's draft, Johnson was the Chiefs' final pick on Saturday after a five-year career at Marshall University. He started 44 games over the last four seasons, rotating between nickelback and free safety while racking up 302 tackles, 26 passes defensed, seven interceptions and five tackles-for-loss in that time.
The 5-foot-10, 199-pound defensive back is explosive and showed off good speed at his pro day, running the 40-yard dash in 4.35 seconds. Here's more from Dane Brugler:
"Johnson plays with outstanding balance in coverage with the athletic twitch to mirror and make sudden start-stops (his elite testing numbers match his athleticism on tape)."
From McDuffie to Johnson, all 10 players impressed the Chiefs enough to hear their names called over the course of draft weekend. It's nothing short of a tremendous accomplishment for each of them, and now with rookie minicamp scheduled to take place this weekend, all 10 players will have an opportunity to prove that they were worth their selection.