If the Chiefs don’t draft a quarterback with the No. 1 overall pick of this year’s NFL Draft, most analysts have said that would be a wise decision given the relative weakness of the class.
But there’s plenty of time between now and late April for the Chiefs to fall in love with a quarterback and decide they have to have him. That’s what happened to Shawn Zobel, who runsdraftheadquarters.com
. After spending time watching Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson work out recently at the IMG Academy in Florida and then last week’s Senior Bowl practices in Alabama, Zobel switched the Chiefs’ top pick in his draft projection from Texas A offensive tackle Luke Joeckel to Wilson.
“I’ve got him right now as my number 12 player in the draft,” Zobel said of Wilson. “Two years ago, Jake Locker was drafted in the top 10. Christian Ponder went 12 overall. I think Wilson is going to be a better player than both of them. So if those two are worth the spots where they were drafted, why isn’t Wilson worth potentially the No. 1 pick?
“He’s 6-2, he’s got a strong arm and he’s accurate. He’s got some small footwork things to work on but it’s nothing that’s going to hold him back. He’s got everything you want to see in a first-round pick.”
So, in Zobel’s opinion, it wouldn’t be much of a reach for the Chiefs to draft Wilson first overall. We’ll see if three months from now the Chiefs agree.
As for a couple of the other top available quarterbacks, USC’s Matt Barkley and West Virginia’s Geno Smith, Zobel said he doesn’t believe the Chiefs should select either one with the top pick.
“Tyler Wilson has a much stronger arm than Barkley and because of that, teams can do more with Wilson at quarterback,” Zobel said. “With Wilson, you’re getting a better arm and somebody who is going to be able to drive the ball further down the field and with more accuracy. If you wanted to make an argument for Barkley, I could understand that. He’s got what it takes to be a pretty good leader in the NFL. But as far as his physical tools, he’s not worth it.
“Geno Smith is the most overrated quarterback I’ve seen in a long time. He’s not that good. If he didn’t throw for 600 and some yards and eight touchdowns against Baylor toward the beginning of the season, he wouldn’t have the hype he’s got right now. He’s talented but I went to watch him work out a couple of weeks ago down in Florida and he was airmailing the ball over a wide receiver who was just standing there. He wasn’t even running a route.
“Geno Smith has a stronger arm and more talent than Tyler Wilson. But is Tyler the more complete package and more NFL ready and somebody I would trust with my offense? Absolutely. Without a doubt in my mind.”