West Notes: Chiefs, Raiders, Broncos, Cards

Virginia Commonwealth’s Mo Alie-Cox isn’t the only collegiate basketball player garnering interest from the Chiefs, as the club also has visits lined up with D.J. Johnson (Kansas State) and Najeal Young (Texas Wesleyan), according to Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star. Johnson, meanwhile, has also set up a meeting with the Bears, per Kellis Robinett of the Wichita Eagle. As Paylor notes, Kansas City has used the basketball-to-football strategy before, as tight ends Demetrius Harris and Ross Travis both played hoops in college. Like Alie-Cox, Johnson and Young aren’t eligible for the draft and are allowed to sign NFL contracts immediately.

Here’s more from the NFL’s two West divisions:

  • The Raiders stand a “good chance” of bypassing one of their biggest needs — linebacker — in favor of defensive back help on Day 1, per Tony Pauline of DraftAnalyst.com. Both the Raiders and Titans have visited with Colorado cornerback Chidobe Awuzie, reports Pauline, and both clubs could seriously consider Awuzie in the first round (at picks No. 24 and No. 18, respectively). Oakland could use another player in the secondary next to Sean Smith and David Amerson, while Tennessee released veteran corner Jason McCourty today and are fielding one of the league’s worst corner depth charts.¬†Dallas has also met with Awuzie, who posted one interception and four sacks last year.
  • After ranking 27th in adjusted sack rate in 2016, the Broncos are unsurprisingly expected to target offensive lineman in the draft, according to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report (video¬†link). Utah tackle Garett Bolles, whom I sent to Denver in PFR’s first 2017 mock draft, is of “high interest” to the Broncos, who hold the No. 20 pick in Round 1. But Denver is unlikely to stop on Day 1, as the club will probably select multiple offensive lineman over the course of the draft, per Cole. The Broncos signed free agents Menelik Watson and Ronald Leary last month, but the front five — especially left tackle — still needs a lot of help.
  • Alabama linebacker Ryan Anderson has a workout scheduled with the Cardinals, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle. Arizona currently boasts Chandler Jones, Markus Golden, free agent signee Jarvis Jones, Kareem Martin, and Gabe Martin on the edge, but Anderson would give the club yet another option to get after opposing quarterbacks. Anderson, who managed 8.5 sacks in 2016, has also met with Houston and Carolina. Anderson is a likely Day 2 prospect, and was compared to San Francisco’s Ahmad Brooks by Lance Zierlein of NFL.com.
  • The Raiders had scheduled a meeting with Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster, but he won’t be able to attend due to a scheduling conflict, reports Adam Caplan of ESPN.com (Twitter links). Still, the proposed visit indicates a level of interest from Oakland, which clearly needs assistance at linebacker. If Foster falls to No. 24, the Raiders would likely run to turn in their card.
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