NFL Combines Key to Chiefs Future

Photo: Brian Spurlock USA TODAY Sports

With the start of the NFL Combines on Thursday, the Kansas City Chiefs have officially hit the 2013 off-season market. Now comes the fun part. So how big is this round of the combines for the Chiefs? Pretty darn big.

When the Senior Bowl concluded last month the Chiefs new General Manager John Dorsey and Head Coach, Andy Reid, had a pretty good idea from their meet and greet with agents representing soon to be free agents, that all signs were strong about getting an audience now that the two men are in place in Kansas City.

Dorsey has a reputation, of not only being fair with agents representing all levels of NFL players, but also a man who doesn't beat around the bush in negotiations. Further, he won't sign any player unless they fit a certain mold and can be counted on to make an immediate roster appearance.

Reid, who finished most of his coaching staff, outside of finding a title for Brad Childress, who will join the organization once the Cleveland Browns release him from his contract, certainly has already made a few personnel changes.

But if the Chiefs are going to be contenders in 2013, as I believe they will, he has his work cut out for him this week.

The Chiefs head to the NFL Combines with a laundry list of needs; offensive line, quarterback, wide receiver, cornerback, safety, linebacker and defensive line. And that should keep both Dorsey and Reid evaluating every player at the combines in a matter that can be best described as, up close and personnel.

After the madness ends in Indy, Dorsey, the coaches and the scouts will travel to as many pro days as they can in March to get a better look at some of the candidates that could fill out a portion of the Chiefs 2013 roster.

But they're also going to have to find a few free agent gems. Already the Chiefs have been linked to Miami Dolphins Left Tackle, Jake Long, Packers Wide Receiver, Greg Jennings, Patriots Cornerback, Aquib Talib, and the Eagles, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.

In addition, the Chiefs appear to be the front-runner to land 49ers Quarterback Alex Smith. However, he's not their top choice. Reid and company would love to pry quarterback Nick Foles, away from the Eagles. But that price might be a bit lofty for the Chiefs who would have to give up the top pick in the second round to land the man they feel could become their version of Ravens Quarterback, Joe Flacco.

So with one eye on the college players this week, the other task at hand for Dorsey will be to sit down with the agents for his own potential free agents such as Punter, Dustin Colquitt, Wide Receiver, Dwayne Bowe and Left Tackle, Brandon Albert.

And of this writing, it's doubtful that Dorsey will sign all three.

Still Dorsey can't dwell on that one task. He has a lot of hand shaking to do with other agents and must lay the groundwork for future trades that could involve two of his own players, running back Jamaal Charles and Linebacker, Tamba Hali. And all those potential moves could determine what the Chiefs do with the #1 overall pick in April.

So whatever happens when free agency begins next month or NFL draft weekend kicks off in earnest in April, you can bet that the seeds for those decisions all began at the NFL Combines in Indy.

To say the next week is critical for the Chiefs 2013 fortunes, would be an extreme understatement. But at least their in great hands with John Dorsey and Andy Reid running the show.


WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
So which free agents do you want to see in Kansas City?


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