The Kansas City Chiefs took a chance on a running back with question marks in GM John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid’s first draft with the team; will they do it again in their second? In the 2013 draft, the Chiefs gambled on Knile Davis in the third round for his incredible combination of strength and speed despite a history of injuries and fumbling problems.
It was a risk/reward pick that the jury is still out on, but Davis’ fractured fibula suffered in the Chiefs’ playoff loss to the Indianapolis Colts may push the front office to go for another running back in the 2014 draft. Kansas City will most likely use their first pick on a bigger area of need, and their second pick was traded to the San Francisco 49ers last offseason for QB Alex Smith. So if they want a good running back, they may have to gamble again.
If the Chiefs are looking for one with a high ceiling that they can probably get later in the draft, their man may be just a two-hour drive away. Missouri Tigers running back Henry Josey has a tremendous skill-set with home run speed and enough strength to grind out some tough yards. In his only season in the SEC, Josey ran for 1,166 yards on 174 carries for an average of 6.7 yards per carry with 16 touchdowns.
He finished his career at Mizzou with 2,771 rushing, 30 touchdowns and averaged 7.0 yards per carry. The only reason Josey isn’t being projected around the first or second round was his devastating knee injury in 2011 that tore his left anterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and patellar tendon. It was a freak injury that put him down for the end of the 2011 season and kept him out for all of 2012, but he showed no signs of slowing down when he returned in 2013.
The injury scare has Josey projected as a mid-to-late round draft pick, which would definitely make him worth a gamble for the Chiefs. He is a smart runner who explodes out of his cuts, and his maturity level and leadership have been major assets to the Tigers.
Another running back with injury concerns may not sound too appealing for Kansas City, but Josey’s potential makes him well worth the risk. You would never know he was coming off such a serious injury from what he did on the field in 2013. Another team may reach for him, but if Josey is still on the board in the later rounds, the Chiefs should definitely take him.