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Chiefs pick WR Moore, S Bryan Cook on Day 2 of NFL draft

(KY3)
Published: Apr. 29, 2022 at 9:51 PM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Kansas City Chiefs traded away Tyreek Hill and watched Tyrann Mathieu depart in free agency, bidding adieu to two of the cornerstones that helped the franchise rise from mediocrity to AFC juggernaut.

They spent the second night of the NFL draft finding some replacements.

The Chiefs traded back four spots with New England to take Western Michigan wide receiver Skyy Moore on Friday night, then used their other second-round pick on Cincinnati safety Bryan Cook, adding them to a first-round haul of Washington cornerback Trent McDuffie and Purdue defensive end George Karlaftis.

The Chiefs also had a late third-round pick Friday night before the draft concludes Saturday with one pick apiece in the fourth and fifth rounds and four more in the seventh round.

“We’re always looking at the value of the board and marrying up the need,” said Mike Borgonzi, the Chiefs’ director of football operations. “It fell to us again this year. We were able to fill some needs as well as where they sat on the board. We weren’t reaching for these players. We got value for where we were at on the board but filled a need as well.”

The Patriots used the No. 50 pick from Kansas City to select Baylor wide receiver Tyquan Thornton. Two more teams ahead of the Chiefs also grabbed receivers with Pittsburgh taking George Pickens and Indianapolis picking Alec Pierce.

But the target for the Chiefs was Moore, whose 5-foot-10 frame, 4.41 time in the 40 and burst off the line will remind some of Hill, the three-time All-Pro that Kansas City shipped to Miami for a package of draft picks.

“Tyreek was just a super versatile, super-fast game. He was able to bring the speed to that offense,” Moore said. “I really honestly feel like I can come in and bring that same thing and bring my own twist to it.”

The Chiefs have also signed former Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and former Packers deep threat Marquez Valdes-Scantling in free agency. But the shifty, slippery Moore offers a different dynamic in the wide receiver room, giving quarterback Patrick Mahomes another target who has the ability to make things happen after the catch.

Moore actually played quarterback in high school before moving to wide receiver at Western Michigan, where he became an immediate star. Despite never having played the position, he started 12 of 13 games as a freshman and had 53 catches for 802 yards with three touchdowns, and then improved those numbers each of the next two seasons.

He wound up catching 95 passes for 1,292 yards and 10 touchdowns for the Broncos last season.

“I’m a very versatile, tough, smart and savvy wide receiver. A lot of the traits the fanbase has and the organization has are already instilled in me,” said Moore, the seventh wide receiver taken in the first 22 picks of the second round and the 13th taken in the draft overall. “The Chiefs are the best organization, the best offense to compliment my playing style.”

The Chiefs used their other second-round pick on Cook, a hard-hitting safety who rarely misses a tackle and excels in stopping the run. He joins the other two first-round picks by Kansas City — McDuffie and Karlaftis — in upgrading a Kansas City defense that struggled mightily down the stretch last season.

The Chiefs signed former Texans safety Justin Reid in free agency, and they have Juan Thornhill under contract one more year. That means Cook is likely to help in three-safety sets with the chance to supplant Thornhill down the road.

“They’re going to have a phenomenal scheme as well as staff,” Cook said. “I’m just ready to help the Chiefs get those Ws.”

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