The NFL Draft is right around the corner, and the Kansas City Chiefs have one of the best in the business ready to make the picks. General manager Brett Veach is one of the primary architects behind the reigning Super Bowl champions, and history shows that he should continue to add young talent. Looking back on his track record, it’s hard to find another general manager as consistent as him when it comes to first-round selections.
Looking Back at Brett Veach in the First Round of the NFL Draft
Brett Veach officially earned the title of General Manager back in 2017 but has remained a key piece of the front office since arriving in 2013. During the first year running the show, Veach made the most important trade in franchise history. Originally owning the 27th overall pick, Veach packaged that selection, a third-round pick, and a 2018 first-round pick for the right to draft Patrick Mahomes. That decision obviously paid off, as Mahomes is the best young quarterback in the league. The Texas Tech product already won league MVP and Super Bowl MVP honors and should only improve as he gains more and more experience.
Mahomes is far from the only good first-round selection under the Veach regime. While serving as Co-Director of Player Personnel in 2015 and 2016, the Chiefs used their first-round selection on cornerback Marcus Peters. Peters came with his fair share of headaches, but nobody can deny that the ball-hawking cornerback was worth the early investment.
The success continued in 2013 and 2014, as Veach helped select left tackle Eric Fisher and linebacker Dee Ford. In the interest of being fair, it’s worth noting that Veach was a pro and college personnel analyst in 2013 and 2014, so it’s hard to say exactly how much influence he had in those drafts.
Even when the Chiefs trade out of the first round, they usually end up on top. Last year, the Chiefs traded their first-round pick for defensive lineman Frank Clark. After a slow start, Clark eventually found his footing and became a productive member of the front seven.
The greatest heist of them all was when Veach and company traded out of the first round in 2016. Kansas City surrendered the 28th overall pick to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for the 37th, 105th, and 178th selection. The 49ers used the 28th pick on guard Joshua Garnett, while the Chiefs landed superstar defensive lineman Chris Jones at 37.
With the Eagles
Brett Veach was never the top dog during his time with the Philadelphia Eagles, but he was one of the more important members of the front office. During his time with Philadelphia, the Eagles selected wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, defensive end Brandon Graham, guard Danny Watkins, and defensive tackle Fletcher Cox.
Watkins was the only one of these picks that didn’t work out. Maclin, of course, spent some time as Philadelphia’s top receiver and even made a brief two-year cameo in Kansas City. Brandon Graham remains a valuable part of Philadelphia’s front seven and is annually one of the most underrated players in the league. Fletcher Cox, meanwhile, has a case for being the best defensive tackle in football not named Aaron Donald.