The Kansas City Chiefs announced the signing of first-round draft pick, Dee Ford, on Saturday meaning all their draft picks are signed, sealed and delivered just in time for all the off-season minicamps and OTAs.
Ford (6-2, 252 lbs), a linebacker/defensive end out of Auburn University, was the 23rd pick overall in the recent NFL Draft. He played in 52 games (20 starts) for the Tigers during his collegiate career, making 93 tackles, 20.5 sacks, and 27.5 tackles for a loss. He also added 40 quarterback pressures during his career.
He’ll be expected to rotate into the mix with veterans Tamba Hali and Justin Houston at outside linebacker with the Chiefs this year and could push Hali for a starting job. At worst, Ford is pass rushing insurance for the team in case Hali or Houston get injured like last year. Kansas City had the best defense in the league in the first half of 2013 until both Hali and Houston were hurt and the subsequent lack of a pass rush caused the entire unit to nosedive to being one of the worst defenses.
In addition, Hali turns 31 this season and is in the last year of his contract and could be gone in 2015. Houston can also become a free agent after 2014, making Ford important in the long term plans as well.
Ford has joined his fellow rookies and free agent teammates during this weekend’s rookie minicamp at Arrowhead Stadium. The camp runs through Monday.
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