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Chiefs 2022 draft grades
Kansas City Chiefs

Chiefs 2022 Draft Grades: Finding Impact Starters

  • Drae Harris
  • May 1, 2022
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Chiefs 2022 Draft Grades

After the Kansas City Chiefs signed their franchise QB to a nearly half-billion-dollar contract, improving their team by hitting on draft picks will be extremely important. With the 2022 NFL Draft ending this past weekend, they did just that. Now it’s time for Chiefs 2022 draft grades.

Obviously, Kansas City’s goal is to return to the Super Bowl, and improving their defense is critical to this. After trading Tyreek Hill to the Miami Dolphins, replacing the speed element he brought to the offense was also one of their objectives. 

Chiefs 2022 Draft Grades

Round 1 (No. 21 overall): Trent McDuffie, CB, Washington

First-round selection Trent McDuffie gives them an athletic cornerback with true inside/outside flexibility. The offenses in the AFC West have improved drastically. McDuffie should be a starter immediately and gives them true man coverage ability on the outside and can play the nickel in subpackage situations. 

Round 1 (No. 30 overall): George Karlaftis, EDGE, Purdue

The Chiefs Kingdom will love this player for his relentless motor, effort, and blue-collar toughness. His play on the edge gives the Chiefs an impactful defender opposite of Frank Clark and also softens the blow if they choose to allow him to walk. Karlaftis may never be a double-digit sack guy, but his ability to defend the run and rush the passer is the combination the Chiefs need on the edge. 

Round 2 (No. 54 overall): Skyy Moore, WR, Western Michigan

Many people believed Skyy Moore could sneak into the first round, so getting him here gives the Chiefs good value. His extremely competitive style of play will help ease the loss of Hill. Although he’s not quite as explosive or dynamic as Hill, Moore can be moved around and used in different ways.

Round 2 (No. 62 overall): Bryan Cook, SAF, Cincinnati

To the delight of many Chiefs fans, they allowed Daniel Sorensen to leave this offseason. The Chiefs like to use a lot of three-safety sets in subpackages. Bryan Cook should immediately be a contributor in this role and will also challenge Juan Thornhill for time on the back end in base. 

Round 3 (No. 103 overall): Leo Chenal, LB, Wisconsin

Leo Chenal is a big, physical linebacker who is an explosive hitter. As the Chiefs continue to shore up their defense, this selection was a step in the right direction. Pairing him next to last year’s selection of Nick Bolton should greatly benefit this defense. Chenal will be an instant impact player on special teams who will likely develop into their starting strong-side linebacker in base.

Round 4 (No. 135 overall): Joshua Williams, CB, Fayetteville State

Joshua Williams gives them another corner with length on the outside. He proved at the Senior Bowl that the stage wasn’t too big for him. He should immediately challenge for a role in subpackage situations on the outside. 

Round 5 (No. 145 overall): Darian Kinnard, OL, Kentucky

Darian Kinnard played tackle at Kentucky but will likely be moved to guard. He is a physical player who gives them insurance on the inside in the event that Trey Smith’s health issues return. He can also get you out of a game at tackle if necessary. His positional flexibility will be a great addition as a depth player who could have starting value in the future.

Round 7 (No. 243 overall): Jaylen Watson, CB, Washington State

Jaylen Watson gives the Chiefs another cornerback with length who can contribute on the outside. His ability to press is complementary to L’Jarius Sneed. Watson is 6-foot-3 and is better in off-man than you think.

Round 7 (No. 251 overall): Isaih Pacheco, RB, Rutgers

Isaih Pacheco gives them a talented depth player who should compete for a roster spot immediately. He is a bigger running back who has dynamic speed and explosiveness. He runs extremely hard and should challenge for a roster spot immediately with attributes that translate well to being a core special teams player. 

Round 7 (No. 259 overall): Nazeeh Johnson, SAF, Marshall

With late-round selections, you go with guys who may not have the product but have the traits to develop. Nazeeh Johnson has good size at 6-foot-2 and 189 pounds. He’s explosive and ran 4.35. This ability translated well to special teams, which is where he will have to make his mark to earn a roster spot immediately.

Overall Grade: A