The Latest Line … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs

There are 14 days until the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft. Seems like a good enough time to guess, conjecture, dissect and throw darts to divine the name of the Chiefs No. 1 draft choice.

Understand that no magic information has slipped under the door at the Truman Sports Complex to reveal their interest. No puffs of smoke, black or white. Various players have come to Kansas City to meet with the club. Team officials have headed out around the country to meet with players on their home turf. What it all means is unknown at this point. These assignations could be evidence of interest on the part of the Chiefs, or could be smokescreens to shield the true objects of their football desires.

We sit on the periphery of the media world so like our bigger brothers in the print, television and yakkers world, we are not going to allow facts or in this case non-facts to clutter up our story. That’s a long sentence to say we are guessing on the No. 5 choice.

Here’s what I think can be established at this point: QB Sam Bradford, DT Ndamukong Suh and OT Russell Okung will not be available when the Chiefs turn to draft in the first round begins. Bradford will go either No. 1 to St. Louis or No. 4 to Washington or a team the Redskins trade with. Suh will go No. 1, No. 2 to Detroit or No. 3 to Tampa Bay. Okung figures to be drafted at No. 2 or No. 4.

One other player will also be off the board and thus unavailable to the Chiefs.

Right now, I think these are the players that Pioli/Haley will consider with the start of their time on the clock:

  • DT Gerald McCoy
  • S Eric Berry
  • ILB Rolando McClain (right)
  • WR Dez Bryant
  • OT Bryan Bulaga
  • CB Joe Haden
  • QB Jimmy Clausen
  • RB C.J. Spiller

McCoy is either the No. 1 or 2 defensive linemen in this year’s class. Berry is the No. 1 safety, McClain the No. 1 inside backer, Haden the first cornerback, Bryant the first wide receiver and Spiller is the first running back. Clausen is the No. 2 quarterback and Bulaga is the second offensive lineman.

Here are the possible scenarios involving each player and the early odds of selection at the Gretz Sports Book/Gas Station/Poker Parlor, located in an unincorporated area of Miami, Oklahoma:

G. MCCOY/10-1 – It’s hard to wrap our hands around the chances the choice would be the big tackle from Oklahoma. That would make three straight years where a top five choice was used by the Chiefs on a defensive lineman. Pioli/Haley are old school types and believe in the importance of the big guys on the line of scrimmage. But drafting McCoy wouldn’t make much sense given the other holes on the roster.

BERRY/4-1 – Every Chiefs fan that follows the draft has heard about the Peter King story that indicates Pioli would not use the fifth choice on a safety. For those that missed, here’s a link. Should we read anything into this story? No. If the Chiefs decide Berry is worthy and the best player available, not selecting him would invalidate everything Pioli has said since he was hired by Clark Hunt.

MCCLAIN/3-1 – Most of the draftniks do not have McClain rated among the top five players. That’s inconsequential to this discussion. Remember, Tyson Jackson wasn’t on anybody’s radar screen at the top of the 2009 NFL Draft. Whether one thinks the Chiefs reached for the LSU defensive end also doesn’t matter. McClain is the best linebacker in this year’s draft. He comes out of the Alabama program with Nick Saban, a friend of Pioli. If they like him, they will draft him.

BRYANT/100-1 – The Chiefs need help at wide receiver. They don’t need the type of baggage that comes with Bryant.

BULAGA/8-1 – Offensive line talent is a must, no question. Bulaga has played for Kirk Ferentz, and there’s been plenty of notice about the Iowa head coach and Pioli being buddies from their days working together under Bill Belichick with Cleveland.

HADEN/50-1 – Cornerback is not the position of greatest need for the Chiefs and Haden is not one of those once in a generation cornerbacks that a team can’t pass up. There’s a possibility only because of one thing: an NFL team can never have too many good corners.

CLAUSEN/50-1 – It would be a surprise if there wasn’t interest in the Notre Dame quarterback by the Chiefs. But they have a QB they’ve committed too in Matt Cassel and there are many more spots on the offense and defense that need help.

SPILLER/100-1 – This is the type of guy the Chiefs – or any team – could use in their offense and special teams. With Jamaal Charles having his breakout season in ‘09, it’s hard to believe they would go for Spiller in the first round.

And there are two more possibilities:

NONE OF THE ABOVE/7-1 – Hey, I learned my lesson last year with Jackson.

TRADE DOWN/40-1 – It’s quite hard for teams to trade out of the top five in any given Draft. In the last decade, only seven of the 50 choices changed hands, and only two in the last eight years. The New York Jets were involved in both trades, moving up to 2003 to No. 4 so they could select DL Dewayne Robertson and then to No. 5 last season so they could draft QB Mark Sanchez. The Jets do not have the ammunition to move up this year; they sit at No. 29 in the first round, with No. 61 in the second round, with no third-round selection. Right now the best chance would be if some team decides they want Clausen and are worried that he won’t get to their spot later in the top 10 or top 15.

That’s our odds today. We’ll update next week after seven more days of rumors and non-facts. Enjoy!


The police in Milledgeville, Georgia and the state’s bureau of investigations turned over the information from their probe of a possible sexual assault involving Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger to the district attorney.

Frederic Bright is the Ocmulgee Judicial Court D.A. and he will review the findings and decide what happens next. Bright can (1.) investigate more, (2.) dismiss the whole thing and say there is no evidence of a crime, (3.) immediately file charges or (4.) take the case to a grand jury which would likely mean Roethlisberger would be indicted on some sort of charge.

The investigation began last month when a student at Georgia College and State University told police Roethlisberger sexually assaulted her inside the Capital City nightclub. Authorities have been vague about specific accusations, but Roethlisberger has denied doing anything wrong through his Atlanta-based attorney. He also has refused to meet with the investigators.

If Bright goes to a grand jury, it could be months before there’s a charge handed down. Right now, the Steelers and Roethlisberger are seeking a quick settlement so the quarterback can get on with his off-season work. So far, he’s stayed away from the Steelers program.


  • BENGALS – ERFA C Kyle Cook signed.
  • BILLS – signed RB Walter Mendenhall.
  • COWBOYS – RFA OL Pat McQuistan signed tender offer.
  • EAGLES – RFA OL Nick Cole signed tender offer.
  • SAINTS – signed DE Alex Brown (Bears).
  • SEAHAWKS – released TE John Owens.
  • TEXANS – RFA RB Ryan Moats signed tender offer.

29 Responses to “The Latest Line … Thursday Cup O’Chiefs”

  • April 8, 2010  - KC_Guy says:

    Well, if you discuss Dez Bryant, Joe Haden or Jimmy Clausen you probably should have a look at a pass rusher as well.
    Vrable is near the end of his career, Studebaker unproven. That leaves only Hali right now. Derrick Morgan (although probably more a 4-3 type guy) and Brandon Graham come to mind.

  • April 8, 2010  - MenInRed says:

    So Bob see’s it like this:

    1)MCCLAIN 3-1
    2)BERRY 4-1
    4)BULAGA 8-1
    5)MCCOY 10-1

    of haven the best odds with our #5 pick. I think it will be Bob’s #3 just like last year, a name out of no where.

    GO CHIEFS!!!

  • April 8, 2010  - Jake says:

    I can’t understand the Bulaga talk at all. Is left tackle such a need that they would reach on someone who wasn’t even the draft’s best player at the position? And then what do they do with Albert, move him to RT? Makes no sense at all. I would lose all faith in Pioli if he reaches on someone we don’t even need that badly just because his buddy coached the kid in college.

    Meanwhile, I don’t know why people aren’t looking closer at Clausen. Cassel proved nothing last year. He can’t throw an accurate pass over 15 yards, and he was total garbage in the final month of the season. Which is a bad sign since both the running game and Oline improved late in the year. He’s also 28-29 years old, this isn’t some rookie out there.

    If Cassel stinks up the joint again this year, where are we at QB? Back to Brodie Croyle? Does anyone really think Pioli came here just to cross his fingers that Croyle can stay healthy?

  • April 8, 2010  - The Morning Fix | Arrowhead Addict | A Kansas City Chiefs blog says:

    [...] The Latest Line … Thursday Cup O’ In Kansas City, mini-camps typically occur the weekend after the draft (rookie camp) and in the first or second weekend of June (mandatory mini-camp). None of the pre-training camp workouts were made open to the public last year, but all training camp practices will open for public attendance in St. Joseph this summer. [...]

  • April 8, 2010  - ThunderChief says:

    Two thoughts (not facts, but close to that) come to mind in reading Bob’s entertaining odds chart:

    1) Teams can turn around quickly in the NFL and go from doormat to contender.

    2) The Chiefs aren’t one of those exceptions in 2010

    Even with a marvelous draft, I don’t see the Chiefs as a playoff team this year. Oh sure, miracles happen and all that but if they’re not a post season threat in 2010, why not position the team for that kind of success in 2011 and beyond?

    My long winded way of saying that I think the 50-1 odds of the Chiefs taking Clausen are out of whack. If you think Cassel is the guy to lead the team to the promised land, then you’re seeing a different guy than I’ve seen in 2009.

    So, take Clausen, let him understudy for a year or less, and put the reigns in his hands for the future. I see Clausen as a 3-1 chance of being taken.

  • April 8, 2010  - Jim Lloyd + says:

    Dez B. —– BIG mistake…..

  • April 8, 2010  - el cid says:

    None of us really know what Pioli thinks…..So look at last years draft. He worked on DE and I feel passed on “better” college talent. Apparently he felt that was the “need” and, frankly, the best player be darned. Now move forward, if you id the biggest need, Pioli might well go that direction again. I feel it would be a mistake but what the heck? Hmmm, how about NT or LB or S or maybe a WR, if he cannot do without one specific guy. LT would seem to be very low to me but I dislike the 09 draft, so what do I know. If Pioli follows what he did last year, it will not be the best player but the player at the position he wants best.

  • April 8, 2010  - Paul says:

    I don’t buy the left tackle (LT) talk either. There are even some players on the team that play with Albert think he’s just fine at LT. I bet the coaches think Albert’s just fine where he is as well.

    I’m not too sure about the Clausen pick either. I think it actually makes more sense then snagging a Left Tackle, but with so many more holes on this team, I just can’t see the Chiefs using a top 5 pick on a QB when they have one that they believe in right now. Whether Cassel is legit remains to be seen. Chambers seems to like the guy, and that’s enough for me. A proven veteran who thinks he’s one of the better QBs he’s played for speaks volumes … but I won’t go on that soap box.

    Ultimately, I think we actually pick ILB Rolando McClain. The front 7 is the most important aspect of a defense, and we’re full of holes and band-aids there. Sure a guy like Berry would be great to have on your squad in the defensive backfield, but it does you no good without a good pass rush, and a legitimate threat to stop the run up front. With Hali proving he can play the weekside LB spot, Vrabel being the mentor, I think it just makes too much sense to bring the product from Alabama in. … Oh by the way, Saban speaks highly of the guy, and Pioli and him are buds. When Saban speaks, Pioli listens. I just think it makes too much sense to take this guy. It’s a need, he’s the best LB in the draft, and who cares if he’s a legitimate top 5 pick or not. If he can come in and help your team immediately, then get him.

  • April 8, 2010  - chiefsfanatic says:

    I think they go with Berry all the way,and no looking back.

  • April 8, 2010  - aPauled says:

    BW gave Albert some backing…but don’t you think that had more to do with supporting your guy? Albert did not play well at LT last year. O’Callahan was decent at RT but we need to upgrade the OT position and the OL in general. I think the Chiefs will take Okung or Bulaga at #5. Follow up with S Nate Allen at #36 and a NT or ILB at #50. Odds at 9876-1234. I prefer Bob’s odds though and go with McClain or Berry…just doesn’t sound like Pioli to go with ILB or S at #5. He’s a position value guy early DL, OL…

  • April 8, 2010  - Rick says:

    thunder chief…you could say the whole thing about the whole team. I still think Cassell will be a good QB. Because his receivers dropped umpteen hundred passes last year he gets alot of blame. Because we didn’t have a running game until Charles was inserted he took alot of sacks. I for one am not ready to give up on Cassell.

  • April 8, 2010  - Mad Chief says:

    I’d be happy with either Berry or McClain…but would prefer Berry. I also wouldn’t mind seeing Pioli take Weatherspoon from Mizzou. Everyone would call that a “reach” at #5, but mark my words…that dude is going to be a damn good player in this league.

    We do NOT need to take an O-lineman at #5…so foget about Bulaga. (And I hope to God we don’t take him.)

    And PLEASE do not take Clausen. Pick a mid-round QB and see if he can develop. That said, if Colt McCoy somehow is still on the board with our first second-round pick…I’d pull the trigger on that in a heartbeat. I think that guy is going to make it in this league. A little small…but his passing accuracy is excellent. Clausen? Kind of a strange guy, from what I’ve seen. Don’t want him. Hell, I’d rather have Tebow than Clausen.

  • April 8, 2010  - adams2000 says:

    No love for Dan Williams, NT out of Tennessee? In my opinion, this guy fits the TJ mold in this draft. He’s been steadily climbing up boards since the Senior Bowl, and is now listed in the 9-15 pick range. He’s at a position of need (our biggest need in my opinion), and fits the “build through the trenches” mantra that we seem to be following. My money is on Williams.

  • April 8, 2010  - colby says:

    I have a hard time thinking we will take an OT in round 1. Moving Albert to RT makes no sense at all. He never played OT in college, switched to LT in the pros, and would then have to learn every technique in REVERSE on the right side. No way. Plus, the smart money would say we draft a LT and move Albert to OG, but we signed Lilja first off, second, we won’t shift Waters to C because we signed Wiegmann. I think those moves indicate that they are comfortable giving Albert one more year to prove he can play LT before deciding on moving him inside.

    Smart money says Berry, but smart money also said Aaron Curry last year and we passed on him. So who does that leave us to reach for if it’s not a LT or Berry?

    NT Dan Williams
    OLB/DE Derrick Morgan
    WR Dez Bryant
    CB Joe Haden
    ILB Rolando McClain

    One of those five will be wearing red and gold, unless we miraculously trade down.

  • April 8, 2010  - colby says:

    One last thing. On the trade down front, Buffalo is interesting. We have two players that Chan Gailey might want: Brodie Croyle (they need a QB) and Mike Cox (who played four year with Gailey at GA Tech, and one and a half years in the pros). Also, I’ve heard that they might be dangling SS Dante Whitner as trade bait for maybe a 3rd or 4th rounder. He is making big money as a former 8th overall pick, but is a good player who is an upgrade at SS for us and still young at 25. If it were an option, I would swap 5 for 9 straight up if we could get Whitner. Sure, we’d miss out on Berry, but we could pick up a FS later in the draft (like Nate Allen in rnd 2) and thus upgrade both spots.

    Plus, Bulaga or McClain or anyone else they might have reached for at 5 will look a lot better at 9. Thoughts?

  • April 8, 2010  - jimbo says:

    The Chiefs are in a quandry at #5. There really won’t be anybody worthy of our first pick with the enormous $$ rookie contract that goes along with it. The best 10 guys available (per the mock drafts & sports gurus)are not of dire positional need for the Chiefs at least in the sense of the $$$. Maybe Suh & thats it. McClain has a questionable illness & Berry is more show than go IMO.
    Look, I’m not a big Cassel fan (yet). But the more I think about it Taking Jimmy Clausen may not be such a bad thing. Let’s say we take him at #5, several things can happen. Maybe another team that was hoping to get him was shocked to find out the Chiefs got him. They scramble & call Pioli & say we will swap our #1 & #3 pick for him. Pioli says cool, consider it done. or maybe we keep him, toss in a wad of cash & groom him to be our QB of the future. How else are we going to justify the big bucks at #5. This of course is assuming Charlie Weis is begging Pioli to draft him.
    My best case scenario is we are able to trade down from #5 to about #8 to #12 & forget all the drama that comes with a top 5 pick.

    I’m also on the Weatherspoon bandwagon.
    Go Chiefs.

  • April 8, 2010  - Mad Chief says:

    Buffalo is also rumoured to be VERY interested in Tebow.

    And just because Pioli made an unpredictable pick last year at #3…doesn’t mean he’ll do it again this year. It just makes him, well…unpredictable.

    One question…if you get a really good player, even if it’s not who everyone thought you would or should pick…is it still considered a “reach”?

  • April 8, 2010  - Double A says:

    Love the column today Bob!

    If Gerald McCoy is available at #5, my feeling is, the Chiefs have to take him. Wow! That, or they need to accept a trade offer that they cannot refuse.

    The last defensive playmaker the Chiefs had was DT…? I am so desperate to see a playmaker in a Chiefs uniform. I would be ecstatic the see them pick Eric Berry #5.

    Safe money though is on Brian Bulaga or Trent Williams. More urgent needs, though are: 1. NT (Dan Williams is a possibility – that’s my Tyson Jackson for this year), 2. OC – would love to see them manage to get Pouncey, 3. S – Berry or 4. ILB.

    It’s exciting!

  • April 8, 2010  - True Red & Gold says:

    I will give it a shot:

    First off it doesn’t really matter who we all think is a top 5 talent. None us know who Pioli sees as a top 5 talent.

    Suh: He won’t be there and we all know that, he would be worth trading up to get in my opinion though.

    Bradford: He won’t be there, if he was is our only chance to trade out of the #5 spot.

    McCoy: He could be there, I doubt it but it is possible. If Pioli thinks that he can play the NT than he takes him and gets a player worthy of the #5 pick.

    Okung: He probably won’t be there, I think it is a possibility. If he is than that means McCoy won’t be. I would love to get this guy but after passing on very good LTs last year I am not sure Pioli would make this pick. I still say to get back to the good ole days we need a big bruising OLine.

    Bryant: Haley has to love this guys abilities. He just does not fit the mold of what Pioli and Haley are trying to build though. This guy is a #5 talent and don’t be too shocked if he is the pick.

    McClain: I love this guy and would be tickled if he was our pick. I think CP would make this pick in a second. I am not so sure about Pioli after passing on Curry last year I would be very surprised if this was our pick.

    Berry: I just don’t know what to think about Berry as our #5 pick. I would rather have McClain. I can’t see Pioli falling in love with this guy and everybody knows that Pioli won’t take him just because everybody thinks that he should. I don’t know what Crennel would think of him. I do think Haley would support this pick though. Having said that I agree with Bob that the odds are pretty good that we take this guy.

    Spiller: I would be OK with this pick. If Gaily was our OC this guy would be heavily considered. We have too many other needs for us to take Spiller but he is going to be special in this league.

    Clausen: It really depends on what Weis thinks of this guy, and none of us know that. It wouldn’t surprise me if we take him and then put Brodie on the trading block. My best guess is that we don’t take him and he won’t provide a trade partner. I personally am leery of the guy. I don’t think he fits the Haley mold.

    Bulaga: I am with a lot of guys and I don’t get the Bulaga thing. I think it is a rabbit hunt that the press went out on. Having said that after last years draft it wouldn’t surprise me one bit to see Pioli reach for this guy. I think there are better LTs in this draft than Bulaga

    Trent Williams: I think this guy is a possibility. But only if we have determined to get an OT and Okung is not there. I believe this guy has more upside than Bulaga.

    Dan Williams: We need a NT, this guy will be a good one in the NFL. The question is do we use another top 5 pick on DLine. I don’t know what Pioli is thinking but I think that if the DLine is still not where you want it after several top picks than you do it again and again until you get it right. I don’t think this will be our pick.

    Jason Pierre-Paul: I bet he is being considered.

    Haden: I agree totally with Bob’s assessment on this guy. Would love to have him, worthy of the #5 pick, but we have much greater needs.

    Sergio Kindle: He is on top of the board and could be the pick IMO.

    Derrick Morgan: Has to be in the discussion.

    Earl Thomas: Only if they think he is a better prospect than Berry. This would be typical Pioli and surprise everybody.

    I can hardly wait to see how this draft plays out. I will not believe it if not one of these guys that I mentioned is our pick. And when it comes right down to it I would be OK with any of these guys

  • April 8, 2010  - Danny W says:

    I have to agree. I think if they cant trade down they will pick up a nose tackle in Dan Williams.
    Its not who I want them to pick because there will be a good N.T. in the upper part of round two.
    Terrance Cody
    or Cam Thomas.
    Maybe Pioli will draft two nose tackles. Remember number one pick then Magee at the top of the third?!?

    Why because we got ran on every game last year.

    I just hope he remembers when we couldn’t run or pass the ball at the beginning of the season because we had no protection from the O line.

    I hope at some point he grabs a fast returner and remembers the offensive line in the top round somewhere.

    I also think he will remember us getting torched last year by San Diego with those giant receivers with the long ball.

    Need a safety anyone?

    I like Bob’s assessment of the Oline “talent is a must NO QUESTION”

  • April 8, 2010  - Double A says:

    Other NT possibilities are
    Linvel Joseph – 1st pick of the 2nd round
    Torrell Troup – Don’t think he’ll last ’til round 3, maybe though
    There are 2-3 others that should be avail. later rounds – from what I can figure, there is some depth

  • April 8, 2010  - SG says:

    Colby, that’s an interesting idea about Buffalo down there at #9. I would really like for the Bills to throw in a 5th rounder or something if we did a deal with them…(Our #5 overall for their #9 overall, Mr. Whitner, and their 5th rounder)…

    If we can move down to that area, most of the guys we might want – still might be there – McClain, Williams, etc. I wouldn’t want to pull a “Cleveland” though – I’d rather pick in that 9-12 range and get a difference maker.

  • April 8, 2010  - Mad Chief says:

    If we can somehow manage to trade back to the “9-12 range”…Pioli better take Sean Weatherspoon. Or he can take him at #5 for all I care. It will be interesting to watch this young man become a great LB in this league…and I would absolutely love to see him do it in a Chiefs uniform.

    But, while trading back always sounds good…it rarely happens. I seriously hope this is the year where we can get out of this drafting high “rut” we’ve been stuck in.

  • April 8, 2010  - SG says:

    “Pioli better take Sean Weatherspoon.”

    That would definitely be a great pick. Would you take him over McClain or Dan Williams if either of those guys were there at #9 theoretically? What about Baluga?

  • April 8, 2010  - Mad Chief says:


    Leadership. There are lots of great players available this year, of course. But, Spoon is a leader. Period. And the Chiefs haven’t had a true leader on Defense for, ummm…??? Somebody help me here. DT probably?

    And no to Bulaga, please. Our woeful Defense is in much more need of our first pick. It’s not even close. In my mind, anyway. But, who knows what’s in Pioli’s mind?

  • April 8, 2010  - mar says:

    Realax Chiefs fans. This is not tough… TJackson is going to be a good foundation on our line for years. #5 is not a tough spot ot be in?? we will take the best player for our team.. if we cant trade down. Nobody on here has any idea what is going happen. I know one thing…we will get better & thats all that matters. So relax and enjoy. Chiefs 10-6 div winners- this is fact.

  • April 8, 2010  - ED says:

    Whats wrong with the Chiefs taking Dez Bryant if their able to trade down and get another draft pick in the later rounds. Everyone keeps saying he’s got baggage. What baggage the guy lied about hanging out with Deion Sanders whats the baggage in that. Media is treating Dez Bryant like he’s been locked up or something. Like this kid is some type of woman beater or rapist. Far as I know he made a mistake involving Deion Sanders NCAA and their stupid rules got him suspended thats it. The kid seems to love the game and thats all that matter.

    IN my opinion the Chiefs need to considering adding this guy if they can trade out of the #5 spot and he still falls to them we could use another weapon in the passing game. Also if we’re stuck with that pick we need to take an off. lineman. Drafting Berry isn’t going to help protect Matt Cassell. Besides of the years its prove you can get a good safety in the later round I don’t see any 3rd or 4th round Hall of Fame off. lineman running around. The o-line is too important right now for us to take a safety with the 5th pick.

  • April 8, 2010  - ObscureDave says:

    Here’s my “Tyson Jackson” reach for 2010. IF (big “if”) the Chiefs are happy with Albert at LT, they won’t use #5 on an OT. RT’s are found in round 2-3, not 1.

    BUT we need linebackers (especially athletic edge rushers) badly to help Tamba. I won’t be surprised if they take Brandon Graham either with #5 or via trading down.

    Who knows?

  • April 8, 2010  - Russ says:

    Does this mean BG likes McClain as our pick? Bob what\should the chiefs do with the #5? I have been on McClain since his championship game. But since SP usually likes to build from the Lines out, McCoy for sure if there, Graham, Williams. Only the OL if okung is there. Don’t see Bulaga.
    Berry may be too small for the nfl now…

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