The Kansas City Chiefs have been on the clock since last season mercifully ended with a 2–14 record. That's bad enough for the first overall pick in Thursday's NFL Draft but a year too late for sure-thing prospects Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III. That is, unless Andy Reid and John Dorsey's new regime trades away the pick, which has been among the rumors.
If the Chiefs keep the pick — and even if they trade down — they'll likely aim to protect newly acquired quarterback Alex Smith's blind side by selecting an offensive tackle, either Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel or Central Michigan's Eric Fisher.
The magnitude of the pick grew during the Super Bowl with an NFL Network commercial hyping the league's combine and draft. In the parody spot, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announces the Chiefs taking Leon Sandcastle — Deion Sanders in an Afro wig and Fu Manchu mustache — with the first pick.
Prime Time at 45 would have been better than some of the franchise's recent choices. In fact, he would have been preferred over a lot of number ones since the 1970 NFL and AFL merger. (CBS Sports counted 20 busts since the union.) Every franchise has a history of picking studs and duds. In honor of the Chiefs holding No. 1, here are our choices for the best and worst draft picks in KC history.
1963, Round 1, Pick No. 1
KC can claim more than one sports star named Buck. In the 1963 AFL Draft, the Chiefs made Buchanan the first black player in pro-football history to be chosen with the first overall pick. It was a wise decision. With Buchanan at defensive tackle, the Chiefs won two AFL championships (1966 and '69) and Super Bowl IV. Buchanan was the team's "iron man," playing in 166 straight games (182 total), racking up six AFL All-Star nods, two Pro Bowl selections, six All-AFL picks and a second-team All-Pro selection. Oh, and an induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
1963, Round 7, Pick No. 56
Buchanan wasn't the only gem in the 1963 AFL Draft. In the seventh round, the Chiefs picked Bell, a defensive end from the University of Minnesota. (The Chiefs waited until round seven, convinced that the NFL's Minnesota Vikings were going to take him.) Bell played linebacker in Hank Stram's "stack defense," and he played it so well, he became the first Chief ever elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
1967, Round 2, Pick No. 50
The Chiefs added Lanier to its vaunted defense in 1967, and the hard-hitting linebacker played a part in the stout, shut-down D that won Super Bowl IV over the Minnesota Vikings. Getting there, however, was due largely to Lanier's emotional leadership, centered on five crucial words: "They're not going to score." Lanier yelled this at his teammates in the 1969 divisional playoff game as the New York Jets had a first-and-goal on the 1-yard line. The Chiefs' D held the Jets to a field goal, then went on to win the game.
1997, Round 1, Pick No. 13
It hurts to write it, but Tony G. deserved to go out a winner. Unfortunately, that means ex-general manager Scott Pioli made the right move, trading one of the best tight ends in the game for a draft pick (Javier Arenas). But when Gonzalez goes into the Hall of Fame in Canton (and he will — the man holds NFL records for most receiving yards, receptions and touchdowns as a tight end), fans know it'll be in red and gold.