The 2014 NFL Draft is officially a wrap, which means offseason additions are just about complete. There will be some small free agent additions here and there, but training camp rosters are just about set. With that in mind, we are back to review each of the 49ers 2014 opponents. Each team has gained and lost numerous players, so this series will help get you more familiar with the rosters of each opponent.
RED ALERT: With the 163rd pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Kansas City Chiefs drafted a QB! I repeat, this is a RED ALERT: Alex Smith is in a QB controversy!
No, I don't actually think there will be a QB controversy in Kansas City - not with how efficiently and effectively Smith played last season. He, along with Andy Reid, added a considerable amount of oomph to what had been a bad team the year before. Of course, Smith and Reid don't get all the credit: for the first half of last season the Chiefs' defense was one of the best in the league, for instance. But, I don't think anybody will deny that Smith and Reid helped.
So, the QB position is settled in the short-term. Of course, the Chiefs could decide that Smith isn't the long-term guy. And maybe the newly-drafted Aaron Murray is the guy of the future. But, that decision is probably won't be made this upcoming season. Which means that Alex Smith will complete a fade pass down the sideline for a TD only once this upcoming season, and it will be against us.
Alex joking aside (and I really do wish him the best of luck), the Chiefs had quite a few questions they needed to consider on the free agency front. As we will see in the next section, the Chiefs lost a lot of players. These season, they are going to need to see how well they replaced them.
Additions: OT Jeffery Linkenbach, LB Joe Mays, DT Vance Walker, DT Cory Grissom, CB Chris Owens.
Losses: OT Brandon Albert, WR/RB Dexter McCluster, OG Geoff Schwartz, OG Jon Asamoah, DE Tyson Jackson, LB Akeem Jordan, S Kendrick Lewis, S Quintin Demps, NT Jerrell Powe.
It's always scary to lose so many bodies along the OL. I'm sure the Chiefs have confidence in the new addition Linkenbach and some younger guys, but it's always a bit nerve-wracking when three free agents leave your OL. While McCluster did not put up monster / elite numbers as a WR, he was still a helpful contributor on a team that could use more receiving options. His major value, however, was as a returner in the kicking game.
23. Dee Ford, DE, Auburn
87. Phillip Gaines, CB, Rice
124. De'Anthony Thomas, RB, Oregon
163. Aaron Murray, QB, Georgia
193. Zach Fulton, G, Tennessee
200. Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, OT, McGill
I may have been making jokes about Murray above, but he is a kid to keep your eyes on. Frankly, any young QB on a team run by Reid is worth keeping an eye on. He might be a good player a couple of years down the road. Duvernay-Tardif, being the only OL pick up, strikes me as odd given how many players left in FA. This likely indicates that the Chiefs have a lot of confidence in the in-house options to provide depth. I am also a bit perplexed by the team's decision to not add wide receivers or receiving tight ends during the draft.