The Kansas City Chiefs are riding high into the 2020 NFL Draft coming off a Super Bowl title. The team boasts an exciting core and an elite quarterback, the pieces necessary to compete for another Super Bowl title. If the Chiefs want to defend their title next season, though, they need to dominate the NFL Draft like they did the 2019 season.
The Lombardi Trophy will glisten in the trophy room all offseason, but the Chiefs can’t ignore the needs on the roster. The Chiefs need to address their secondary in the draft and this offense would also benefit from adding a few more weapons. The most glaring needs for the Chiefs are at cornerback and along the line of scrimmage, but more talent always helps. Fortunately, the 2020 draft class can offer them everything they need.
Let’s jump into our seven-round 2020 NFL Draft mock, conducted via Fanspeak, that can help the Chiefs defend their title and potentially become a dynasty.
Second round, 37th pick: Jaylon Johnson, cornerback, Utah
Note: Chiefs trade 32nd pick to the Chargers for their second and fourth-round selections.
The Chiefs could certainly opt to stay at their spot, but the depth of talent in the top-40 picks allows the organization to move down. Kansas City lost cornerback Kendall Fuller this offseason, creating an even greater need in the secondary if this team wants to repeat. In this situation, they pick up an additional fourth-round pick for a player they would have taken at No. 32.
Johnson met with the Chiefs at the NFL Combine and the fit with this team is obvious. The top corner’s versatility and intelligence likely impressed the coaching staff. He showed this past season, while playing through a torn labrum, that he could line up with top receivers and help limit their impact. The 6-foot corner thrives in press coverage and he can start immediately on the outside. It wouldn’t be long before Johnson becomes a crucial piece in Kansas City’s defense.
Second round, 63rd pick: J.K. Dobbins, running back, Ohio State
This is the dream scenario for Kansas City’s front office. After giving careful consideration to taking Dobbins with the 37th pick, he slips to the 63rd pick. He is a first-round talent, proving this past season that he deserved to be recognized as one of the country’s best running backs. Now he slides to the end of the second round and general manager Brett Veach runs to the podium faster than Tyreek Hill.
One of the most impressive aspects of Dobbins’ 2019 season is how often he shined against top teams. He took it upon himself to carry Ohio State’s offense in key moments. He won’t need to do that with the Chiefs, but they’ll love his track record given their own goals for the coming years. Dobbins is a physical runner with plenty of ability to make defenders miss and packs the strength to run them over. He can be a featured running back for the Chiefs or form a dominant pairing with Damien Williams.
Fourth round, 108th overall: Matt Hennessy, center, Michigan
Note: Chiefs trade their third-round pick to the Washington Redskins for Washington’s two fourth-round selections.
The Chiefs need to do everything possible to protect Patrick Mahomes, especially since he’s about to be the highest-paid player in NFL history. While Kansas City could go in several directions to address the offensive line with this selection, the value with Hennessy is too good to pass on.
Hennessy is viewed by many as a center, but he saw some time at guard in college and he took some reps at the position during the Senior Bowl. He is simply outstanding with his technique and wore Temple’s iconic practice jersey to honor his work ethic and toughness. He knows how to win with leverage, get his punches in the right spots and has the athleticism to play guard. We’ve seen the great work Kansas City’s coaching staff can do with offensive lineman and we believe Hennessy could become a pillar on the offensive line for the Chiefs.
Fourth round,112th overall: K.J. Hill, receiver, Ohio State
Yes, the NFL’s best quarterback and coach need more weapons. Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce are incredible players. Mecole Hardman put his skills on display in his rookie season and could be poised for a breakout season in 2020. That’s not enough for Kansas City’s offense. It needs another receiving weapon who can work underneath and make things happen.
That’s exactly where Hill’s skills fit in. He is a phenomenal route runner, using his skills to create separation out of the slot and provide his quarterback with a reliable weapon. Tyreek Hill and Hardman can stretch opposing defenses vertically, leaving the middle of the field open for K.J. Hill. Once you put all of these weapons together, the Chiefs’ offense could achieve even more historic greatness next season.
Fourth round, 138th overall: Jonathan Garvin, edge defender, Miami
Pressuring the opposing quarterback is everything. It’s the reason why the Chiefs turned things around in the fourth quarter, giving the offense a chance to make its dramatic comeback. Of course, there’s no such thing as too many edge rushers and the Chiefs would be happy to land Garvin in this spot.
It would be an understatement to describe Garvin’s 2019 season as strong. He proved that he’s still very raw as a pass rusher, lacking the effort, strength and pass-rushes moves to take advantage of his undeveloped skills. Fortunately for the Chiefs, that all allow him to fall to this spot. He can be molded into a very productive pass rusher in Kansas City’s defense, something we’ve seen them help countless players accomplish. He’ll help generate some pressure as a rookie and, if everything clicks, could be viewed years from now as the draft’s biggest steal.
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Fourth round, 142nd overall: Willie Gay Jr, linebacker, Mississippi State
Few linebackers helped their draft stock more during the offseason process than Willie Gay Jr. He tested incredibly well at the NFL Combine, backing up the reputation of a player who always seems to play like his hair was on fire. He brings size, athleticism and an intensity that can’t be taught. Gay Jr. also offers the versatility to be moved around at the second level. He simply loves to fly around and hit people, which is something this defense could use more of. Gay Jr. falls due to some troublesome off-field issues, including academic suspensions, but the talent is worth it late in the fourth round.
Fifth round, 177th overall: Trey Adams, offensive tackle, Washington
The days of Adams being viewed as a potential top-10 selection feel like a distant memory. Injuries largely kept him off the field during the 2017 and ’18 seasons. When he returned in 2019, he didn’t look like the same player. Unfortunately for Adams, he also is in the draft process at a time when NFL teams can’t clear him medically. Despite all of that, he’s worth taking at this spot. The Chiefs can have him spend time in the weight room, work with his body to try and stay healthy and potentially get a starting-caliber tackle for 2021. Given how strong the rest of this draft is, a risk like this is easily worth taking a chance on.