The NFL draft is always exciting for Kansas City football fans.

The NFL draft is always exciting for Kansas City football fans.

It will be even more interesting this year due to the labor conflict. General manager Scott Pioli and head coach Todd Haley hit a home run in the 2010 draft class.

Guys like Eric Berry, Tony Moeaki, Dexter McCluster and Kendrick Lewis should continue to lift the team in years to come. If the team’s brain trust can repeat the success of the draft last year, they may be able to overcome their very difficult upcoming schedule and head to the playoffs for the second year in a row.

The radio and television talking heads, along with pre-draft hype projections, have everyone buzzing about who the Chiefs should draft. I do see a need for a wide receiver to complement Dwayne Bowe and a need for another pass rusher to play opposite Tamba Hali.

However, because they are picking at No. 21, I think the best avenue for them would be to look at the defensive and offensive line possibilities. I personally feel that one of the biggest improvements the team could make defensively would be to draft a big nose tackle who could make the difference in stopping the run.

Ron Edwards has done an adequate job for the past couple of seasons, but a larger presence in the middle is needed. Edwards would still be an outstanding backup to provided quality depth on the defensive line. If a big, run-stopping nose guard is not available, then the next important emphasis should be on the offensive line, perhaps a left tackle.

Branden Albert also has been a positive contributor since being drafted in the first round, but I think he would be much better suited as a guard or right tackle. Let’s face it – Brian Waters and Ryan Lilja are getting a bit long in the tooth.

A third area that has not been discussed much by anyone would be to pick up a quality corner. You never have enough quality defensive backs in the NFL. The league is based on having secondary players who can at least shut down the No. 1 receiver of any given team. Just look at what happened to Bowe in last year’s playoff game – NO catches!

I do hope the organization will stick with the philosophy of picking high quality and high character players.

- I attended the Monday night game between the Indians and Royals – I almost had to pinch myself to believe I was watching the top two Central Division teams of the American League.

- Derrick Rose is a guy who can help Chicago fans believe that there really is life after Michael Jordan.

- Everyone is having a pity party for the Red Sox – give me a break! Go Yankees.

- St. Louis fans have been on Albert Pujols. They need to relax. It is a given that he will hit 35 home runs and drive in more than 100 runs.

- My quote of the week is from Paul Brown, legendary NFL coach, general manager and owner: “People think there are great mysteries connected with this game, but there are not. It’s just teaching fundamentals, teaching players how to do things the right way.”