This year’s NFL Draft was nothing short of spectacular. It was a historic night filled with teams moving up and down the board, as well as a blockbuster trade. The Kansas City Chiefs were a part of the action as well. The Chiefs started off the night with two back-to-back picks with the 29th and 30th overall selections.
The New England Patriots traded the 21st overall pick the Kansas City Chiefs, in exchange for the 29th, 94th and 121st overall picks. This seems like great value for New England as they gained two additional picks in this year’s draft for only falling down eight picks.
Pick 21: Trent McDuffie, CB, Washington
After the loss of All-Pro Safety Tyrann Mathieu it was clear the Chiefs had to strengthen their secondary through the draft. After a surprising trade with New England, the Chiefs jumped Green Bay and selected McDuffie with the 21st overall pick.
McDuffie is a fast, athletic cornerback who is excellent in coverage and is solid at stopping the run. McDuffie is restricted at times by his small frame. Although, the Chiefs might look to line up McDuffie in the slot as his 5-foot-11 frame won’t match up well with the bigger receivers. Don’t expect McDuffie to be the team’s newest ballhawk either. In his three years at Washington, he only recorded two interceptions none of them being in his final season. Expect him to always be around the ball and be blanketed over his assignment as he will be more of a lockdown slot type.
As a freshman, McDuffie went on to start 11 games for the Huskies. He accumulated 45 tackles, one interception, two pass breakups along with two forced fumbles. In his sophomore campaign McDuffie was named to the second-team All-Pac-12 where in just four games he had 14 tackles and one interception. In his most recent year, he became first-team in his conference with 45 tackles and six pass breakups.
Pick 30: George Karlaftis, EDGE, Purdue
The Chiefs added a much-needed edge rusher to help out Chris Jones in an otherwise lack-luster defensive line. The Chiefs’ defensive line coming into last year was ranked in the bottom half of the league and had a big need for a pass rusher.
Karlaftis is an overall solid edge defender, but needs improvement in all areas of his game. He excels with his counter moves against opposing tackles, but needs to greatly improve as a run stopper. The defensive end seemed to struggle when the opposition would target him in the run game. Running backs often flew by his gap.
Karlaftis enrolled a semester early at Purdue. That decision paid off as he was named as a second-team All-Big Ten pick in his freshman year. During his freshman year, he was very productive as he recorded 17 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks. Karlaftis only played three games in 2020. Karlaftis’ season was derailed by injury and COVID-19, but he was still named to the second-team all-conference. During his most recent year, Karlaftis was named to the third-team All-American and first-team all-conference recording 11.5 tackles for loss and five sacks. Karlaftis was a great value pick as many analysts had him being taken anywhere from the 15-22 pick.