The selection of Patrick Mahomes II in the first round of this year’s NFL Draft has caught the attention of Chiefs fans, but both general manager John Dorsey and coach Andy Reid have made it clear that Alex Smith — 41-20 as a starter the last four years — is their quarterback in 2017.
That means the strong-armed Mahomes must first beat out Tyler Bray, who possesses a rifle-like arm of his own and has been tutored by Smith for the last four seasons, before he can see the field.
Between the two, Chiefs general manager John Dorsey is confident the Chiefs’ No. 2 quarterback — a role filled last season by Nick Foles, who signed with the Eagles as a free agent this offseason — is currently on the roster.
“I do,” Dorsey said. “It will be a good, competitive battle for that position. You’ve just got to let it work itself out.”
Dorsey said the Chiefs are excited to see how quickly Mahomes can pick up Reid’s very wordy West Coast offense.
“That’s the thing we want to see,” Dorsey said “How fast he can accelerate his learning curve and see where he does wind up on the depth chart after playing four preseason games.”
The Chiefs continued their annual tradition of drafting players who participated in the Senior Bowl. Second-round defensive end Tanoh Kpassagnon of Villanova and fifth-round linebacker Ukeme Eligwe from Georgia Southern are graduates of the game, joining the likes of tackle Eric Fisher (2013) and linebacker Dee Ford (2014).
This is no coincidence, apparently, as Dorsey loves the process of evaluating a player’s competitiveness and talent up close and in person.
“It’s that first chance to really assess guys, and certain guys really stand out to you, and that makes you do your due diligence and research even harder and see what makes them click,” Dorsey said of the Senior Bowl. “This year there were a couple guys there that popped out that I wanted to do more research on. We got some players out of that bowl game.”
▪ If most NFL teams are going to shake up their scouting departments, they typically do it right after the draft. Dorsey was asked if any of that is on the horizon for the Chiefs.
“I don’t think so,” Dorsey said. “But I just want to think through everything to see what’s best for the organization.”
▪ Dorsey was also asked about his comfort level if he had to head into 2017 with this current group of players and coaches.
“I feel really good,” Dorsey said. “I thought we have a nice nucleus going into the fifth training camp. With the addition of the six picks, I think makes this the most competitive roster that we’ve assembled.”