Earlier today, MDS pointed out that undrafted players are getting a little stressed. Teams that rely on undrafted players are getting a little stressed, too.
The Chiefs presumably are one of those teams. While the land rush that typically unfolds after the draft has been delayed due to the lockout, an effort to round up undrafted players eventually will occur. Based on an item recently posted at the Chiefs’ website, look for G.M. Scott Pioli and company to be pushing for their preferred undrafted free agents if/when the lockout ends.
“I’ve been with a number of organizations that have had success developing rookie free agents into quality contributors on successful teams,” Pioli told Josh Looney of KCChiefs.com. “It takes contributions from a number of people within the organization in order for it to work.
“It starts with scouts identifying players with talent and the makeup that can meet the demands of our organization. It also takes a talented coaching staff that is willing to invest the time that it takes to help a player mature physically and mentally. However, it ultimately comes down to the player doing what it takes to be a pro.”
Eight undrafted rookies from 2010 are currently on the Chiefs’ roster, where players apparently get equal consideration regardless of whether or where they were drafted. The Chiefs adhere to one of the mantras coined by Pioli’s father-in-law, Bill Parcells: ““It doesn’t matter how you got here. It only matters what you do when you’re here.”
Thus, in an offseason in which the delayed addition of undrafted players will make it easier in many cities for established veterans and big-bonus rookies to hold off undrafted free agents, it appears that the powers-that-be in Kansas City are willing to give those youngsters a full and fair opportunity to stick around, even if there’s limited time to stick.