Meet your new Chief: Cornerback Trent McDuffie
Looking at the Chiefs' first round pick out of Washington, a player with a valuable skillset but some unknowns in his game.
Out with the old, and in with the new. We can finally say goodbye to mock draft season, and now we get to enter… draft grade season! In which we do basically the same thing we were doing before the draft, only now knowing where players went.
Chiefs’ general manager Brett Veach did something Thursday night we’ve expected for years but had started to think would never happen; drafting a cornerback in the first round. And not only did they draft Trent McDuffie out of Washington, they TRADED UP to do it.
I’ll pause for a moment so you can collect yourselves.
The Chiefs, knowing that they had a plethora of extra picks in this draft, moved up to grab a talented player at a position of borderline desperate need. In doing so, they gave up their “original” (higher) 3rd round pick as well as the 4th round pick they’d received from the Dolphins when they traded away Tyreek Hill.
Of course, history will never remember the picks given up if the player does what is hoped. And so we turn our attention to the first rookie Chief of the 2022 season. Say hello to Trent McDuffie.
We all knew the Chiefs had a glaring need at cornerback, but simply slotting a player in there at that position means little. What matters is the player’s skillset and what he can add to the defense. The only place we can find that is by reviewing any available film we’ve got. That’s what we’ll be doing with each draft pick (within reason, the 7th rounders may not each get their own review), starting with McDuffie. For each pick, I’ll review the games I can find and look at how they win, where they can improve, and figure out what their role can be in 2022 and beyond. Fortunately for McDuffie’s review, there are multiple all-22 and broadcast view games to provide a solid sample size.
As most of you know, I’m no draftnik. I barely follow college football. Because of this, I go into these prospects’ film with a completely clean slate to try and learn what they bring to the table. With McDuffie, I saw a lot of things I like along with some real unknowns based on what he was (and wasn’t) asked to do as a college player.
Let’s start breaking down the draft, shall we? (yes, coming next will be a similar look at George Karlaftis, a player I’ve already started to grow fond of)