KC Chiefs add local linebacker in first round of 2021 NFL Mock Draft

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /
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KC Chiefs add local linebacker in first round of 2021 NFL Mock Draft
National offensive lineman Adrian Ealy of Oklahoma (79) blocks National defensive lineman Elerson Smith of Northern Iowa (47) – Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports /

KC Chiefs Mock Draft 1.0

Round 5: Pick 174 – Elerson Smith, EDGE (Northern Iowa)

Elerson Smith is an intriguing small school prospect who could be an interesting experimental player for the Chiefs defense. Smith played his college ball at Northern Iowa, so there’s not a ton of information on him, but he provides upside for whoever takes a chance on him.

If that were to be the Chiefs, Smith could be rotated in and out of the defensive rotations and be used as an edge defender. Cory Kinnan of With The First Pick wrote an article last month about how Smith could be the next big FCS defender and had this to say,

"Displaying his athleticism, Smith is able to work laterally extremely well down the line of scrimmage in pursuit of ball carriers. With one of the best first steps in the class, Smith has the uncanny ability to time the snap count and get a good jump off the ball. Most impressive about the seasoned game of Smith, however, is the nuance he shows in the ability to win with his hands."

Smith didn’t play in 2020 and instead decided to opt-out and focus on the 2021 NFL Draft. That was after he recorded a whopping 14 sacks in 2019 and showed why he could be a tremendous player at the next level.

Playing at a small school definitely hurts his stock, but if a team is willing to take a chance on Smith, it could definitely pay off. He’s probably not getting 14 sacks in a single season, but he has a knack of getting to the quarterback and the Chiefs need that kind of player for their defense.