Breaking down ESPN’s 7-round Chiefs mock draft

The countdown to the 2023 NFL draft is ticking down and it’ll be here before you know it.

As a result, we’re getting more and more full mock drafts for the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs. ESPN’s Jordan Reid recently unveiled a full seven-round mock draft with all 259 picks. There are no trades in this one, but they did accidentally give an extra pick to Kansas City (pick No. 218 belongs to Chicago and not the Chiefs). That said, this draft sends a lot of intriguing prospects to the team.

Below you’ll find a quick breakdown and reaction to each pick:

Round 1, Pick 31: Northwestern EDGE Adetomiwa Adebawore

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Based on the defenders the Chiefs have targeted in previous drafts, they highly covet prospects who can generate consistent pressure. Watch Adebawore’s performance against Ohio State from last season and you’ll see he’s capable of that. That game film is what scouts and evaluators bring up when mentioning why he’ll be a first-round pick. He didn’t have a sack, but he was really solid. Add on running a 4.49-second 40-yard dash at 6-2, 282 pounds, and Adebawore is a unique player who would be a welcome addition to an ascending defense. Adding him to play with George Karlaftis, a first-round pick last season, and recently signed Charles Omenihu would give Kansas City three options off the edge who all are physical run defenders too.

I would love the Chief drafting a Kansas City native at some point in this draft. Tomi Adebawore is one of many alongside Kansas State EDGE Felix Anudike-Uzomah, Michigan WR Ronnie Bell and Penn State WR Mitchell Tinsley. I don’t see Adebawore as a true edge rusher in the NFL. I think he’s a player who is going to make his home at three-technique and will have the flexibility to play edge on occasion (think Chris Jones). Given the flexibility that they already have with the addition of Charles Omenihu, I’m not sure they don’t seek to add a player who makes his home at edge instead.

Round 2, Pick 63: Florida DT Gervon Dexter

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This means the Chiefs are going defensive line with both of their first two picks, as I gave them Adetomiwa Adebawore in Round 1. At 6-6, 310 pounds, Dexter is a towering presence on the inside who would make for an explosive running mate alongside Chris Jones. He fits the Kansas City system well.

This pick feels a bit redundant, only because I tend to view Tomi Adebawore as an interior defensive lineman. I don’t dislike the fit and Dexter even told reporters at his pro day that he felt the Chiefs are one of the teams that have shown the most interest in him. That said, if Adebawore is the pick in Round 1, I have a hard time seeing this move make sense.

Round 3, Pick 95: Wake Forest WR A.T. Perry

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The Chiefs, fresh off a Super Bowl without having a receiver with 1,000 receiving yards, should be searching for targets to add on the perimeter. Perry is a 6-3 receiver who had 81 catches for 1,096 yards and 11 scores last season. Four of those touchdowns came when he was lined up in the slot.

If you’ve been following along on Twitter, I’m a big fan of the middle rounds of this wide receiver class. I think there are quite a few players with skill sets that can come in and make an immediate impact in Kansas City. Perry is one of those players given his ability to play inside and out, doing some of the dirty work that’s vacated by JuJu Smith-Schuster.

Round 4, Pick 122: Texas RB Roschon Johnson

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I really love the fit here with the Chiefs. He’s one of the best pass protectors in this draft class. He’s a powerful runner and moves extremely well for his 6-foot and 219-pound size. He’s a good receiver too with 56 catches for 420 yards and three touchdowns in his career at the University of Texas.

Round 4, Pick 134: Oklahoma OT Wanya Morris


Morris was one of my five standouts from the 2023 Senior Bowl. He has positional versatility with starts at left tackle, right tackle and guard during his college career. He previously played with Trey Smith at Tennessee, so it should come as no surprise that Morris also has some nasty to his game.

Round 5, Pick 166: Alabama S DeMarcco Hellams

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It’s time to put your money where your mouth is, Kid! Hellams told Chiefs Wire’s Ed Easton Jr. that he’d like to match up against Travis Kelce because of the challenge. Well, now he’d get a chance to do that in practice. This Alabama safety has one of the best downhill triggers in this draft class. He’s going to be a terror in the middle of the field and a beast on special teams.

Round 6, Pick 178 (From CHI via MIA for Tyreek Hill): LSU CB Jay Ward

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It seems like Reid agrees with my recent assessment of Ward in Draft Wire’s 7-round mock draft. That’s to say that he reminds me a bit of L’Jarius Sneed coming out of Louisiana Tech. He’s played safety, nickel and outside corner. He’s also a strong leader in the LSU secondary.

Round 6, Pick 217 (Compensatory Pick): South Carolina State WR Shaq Davis

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I like Davis as a prospect. He’s got length to box out corners and he’s a big target in the red zone. If a receiver was selected at this point in the draft, I’d expect it to be a player who can take some special teams repetitions from Isiah Pacheco, Kadarius Toney and Skyy Moore as a return man.

Round 7, Pick 249: TCU LB Dee Winters

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The Chiefs are quite stacked at the linebacker position, but it’s hard not to like Dee Winters as a prospect. He was always around the football for TCU’s defense which helped thrust the team to a national championship game in 2022. He’s coming off a year where he hit career-high marks in tackles, tackles for loss and sacks.

Round 7, Pick 250 (Compensatory Pick): Virginia Tech S Chamarri Conner

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Conner was my standout pick for the safety position at the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine:

In what is considered a weak safety class, a player like Conner could be pushed up the draft board because of his workout. His 40-yard (4.51) ranked No. 7 among safeties. His vertical (40.5 inches) tied for the third-best mark. His bench press (20) and broad jump (125 inches) both tied for the fifth-best mark. During the on-field work, his backpedal and transition were extremely smooth. I was impressed with his ability to break on the ball as well. It also doesn’t hurt that he comes from a school that has constantly been praised for putting out good defensive backs.

Story originally appeared on Chiefs Wire