The Chiefs chose the Tennessee offensive lineman Trey Smith in hopes he can be the guard of the future.
Tennessee Guard Henry Louis “Trey” Smith III sat a long time throughout the 2021 NFL Draft, way too long for his liking. He knew he should be gone by now, but there was a medical conundrum with his blood clots. He was finally selected by the Chiefs at pick 226 and it should be seen as a steal.
Trey Smith now has a chip on his shoulder more than usual and the now three-time All-SEC selection will bring that intensity to the Chiefs Offensive line room. Trey Smith was the perfect fit for the Chiefs, a late-round gem who could be the long-term fix at right guard next to Creed Humphrey.
He belongs in Kansas City, not only because of the attitude he brings, but because he can help the Chiefs become younger on the offensive line as they move deeper into Patrick Mahomes’ long contract.
Trey Smith was a utility lineman when he was at the University of Tennessee, playing at left tackle and left guard in his time there. He was an impact blocker while at Tennessee and continually made the correct blocks while at Tennessee.
But in the middle of his sophomore season at Tennessee, the medical staff found he had blood clots in his lungs which made him miss the rest of the 2018 season. He did play two more seasons for the Volunteers, getting first-team All-SEC in back-to-back seasons in 2019 and 2020, but the blood clot issue would weigh heavy on the minds of NFL Scouts.
But he showed out at the 2021 Senior Bowl and in his Tennessee pro day, benching 225 pounds 32 times, running a 5.14 40 yard dash, and a 31 inch vertical. Many coaches in attendance thought he wouldn’t make it past day 2 of the draft and that he would be a steal late in the second round. He really was an impressive specimen at 6-foot-6, 331 pounds, and for a guy of that stature, he has amazingly quick feet. He is a great puller and was the lead blocker on most runs to the right if he pulled.
Trey should not have been available for Kansas City to choose him in the fourth round, let alone the sixth. He brings depth to an offensive line that struggled last season with injuries and quality depth. The Chiefs should be extremely happy they get Trey Smith to develop for the next season behind Laurent Duvernay-Tardiff or Kyle Long, mainly because he is the right guard of the future.
The Chiefs made moves this offseason to protect Patrick Mahomes, getting Orlando Brown, Joe Thuney, Austin Blythe, and Kyle Long to protect the 500 Million Dollar Man. In the draft, they secured some key depth by picking up Creed Humphrey from Oklahoma and selecting Trey Smith. Smith might not be a day one starter, he might not even be a season one starter but he seems primed to become the right guard of the future in Kansas City.
Kyle Long is a one to two-year fix at right guard at best and he got picked up as a steadying presence at the right guard spot. Trey Smith is going to be the long-term solution on the right side. He’s also not just a guard, he can play tackle and should be seen as a utility offensive lineman in his first season in Kansas City.
With the versatility he possesses, he is in the perfect location with the Chiefs, they should be able to use him inside and out in case there are injuries along the offensive line. Creed Humphrey, Trey Smith, and Lucas Niang are all long-term investments for the Chiefs and should be the future of the right side of the offensive line. Every fan should see them that way and hope they develop into Pro Bowl potential players. Trey Smith should breakthrough into the starting right guard role sooner rather than later.
With Trey Smith’s upside, it is no secret he is in the right place, Kansas City is a place where he doesn’t have the pressure of starting right away. All he needs to do is develop and turn into a reliable starter and he will be a steal if he can help keep Kansas City in contention.
The medical question is a big question but the Chiefs are seen by the region’s best medical facilities in the University of Kansas Medical Center and they should be able to monitor his situation if it arises again. Kansas City also loves its offensive lineman, making sure they are fed all of the barbecue from the great local spots. Trey Smith should feel right at home in Kansas City if he can keep QB1 protected for years to come.