Team with top-5 pick that could contend?


Which team picking in the top 5 is quietly built to contend in 2013?


Discuss (Total votes: 3,615)


Few gaping holes in Kansas City

Jr. By Mel Kiper Jr.

I'll take the Chiefs.

Start with what they did in free agency and via trades. I'm not the president of the Alex Smith Fan Club, but I certainly believe in Andy Reid's ability to get something out of his quarterbacks, and anybody could see that Smith was playing the best football of his career in 2012 in San Francisco before getting hurt.

If he carries any of that over, he has a chance to succeed. He also has targets to work with. Dwayne Bowe didn't get away in free agency, Jon Baldwin has a chance to take a step forward and the tight end combination of Tony Moeaki and Anthony Fasano (another free agent) is sneaky good. Reid has a lot of flexibility in the passing game.

Meanwhile, the Chiefs were somehow capable of running the football regardless of who was playing quarterback ineffectively last season. The defense also got help with the addition of Sean Smith.

If the Chiefs add an offensive tackle with their first pick, they add another key piece to what could be a well above-average offensive line in 2013. After that, you look up and down the starting lineup and you don't see what I'd call massive voids.

Yes, they need another safety, but the draft is deep at the position. Yes, they could use a 3-4 defensive end with the ability to penetrate, but the addition of Mike DeVito means that's not a gaping hole.

In 2011, no team in the NFL got worse quarterback play than the Indianapolis Colts. They drafted Andrew Luck in 2012 and improved dramatically. The takeaway there is that if you get absolutely zilch out of the NFL's most important position, everything else can look far worse than it really is.

The Chiefs got dreadful quarterback play basically all of last season, and the entire team suffered because of it. Thus, they have the No. 1 pick. But they upgraded with Smith, were pretty successful in addressing a couple of needs in free agency and now can add one more piece of premium talent via the draft.

In a division where it's hard to know what we'll see from Oakland or San Diego, Kansas City has a chance to be the big rebound story of 2013.

Mel Kiper has been the premier name in NFL draft prospect evaluations for more than three decades. He started putting out his annual draft guides in 1978 and began contributing to ESPN as an analyst in 1984. For more from Mel, check out his annual draft publications or his ESPN home page. He can also be found on Twitter @MelKiperESPN.

Eagles have talent in place

McShay By Todd McShay
Scouts Inc.

Kansas City certainly isn't a bad choice, and I think Detroit (picking No. 5 overall) also has a legitimate chance to contend for a playoff spot in 2013.

However, given the players now in place and the chance to add plenty of talent in the draft, I'll take Philadelphia.

The Eagles added pieces for their new 3-4 defense in OLB Connor Barwin and NT Isaac Sopoaga, and new FB James Casey can be a versatile contributor on an offense that could provide plenty of fireworks.

If QB Michael Vick stays healthy and buys in to the up-tempo system of new coach Chip Kelly, he could team with RB LeSean McCoy and WRs Jeremy Maclin and DeSean Jackson to give Philly plenty of weapons. And with OTs Jason Peters and Todd Herremans returning from injury, and WR Arrelious Benn also added in the offseason, there's a lot to be excited about on offense.

Everyone in the NFL knows what Kelly did during his time at Oregon, but there are still some unknowns about exactly what his offense will entail and the Eagles could catch some teams by surprise early in the season. And if they can get the tempo of the game where they want, they could wear opponents down.

As for the draft, Philadelphia holds picks No. 4, 35 and 67, and given its offseason moves isn't handcuffed to drafting for need. The Eagles will be able to pick the best available players -- perhaps at cornerback or for depth at offensive tackle -- and possibly get three major contributors, perhaps even three possible starters.

I'll be watching Philadelphia's season opener at Washington with fascination, wondering what kind of offense Kelly will put together, and I'll be interested to see how teams might adjust as the season progresses.

Given the potential on that side of the ball, the quality additions on defense and the potential boost from the draft, it won't surprise me if the Eagles are in the playoff hunt late in the season.

Todd McShay is the director of college scouting for Scouts Inc. He has been evaluating prospects for the NFL draft since 1998. Follow McShay on Twitter @McShay13.