The Kansas City Chiefs finally made a move at the deadline, getting the speedy former University of Florida standout Kadarius Toney for a third and sixth-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Here is an analysis and grade of the Bye Week trade.
The Chiefs made a trade at the deadline for the second straight season, last season the Chiefs moved to get edge rusher Melvin Ingram, and now they add the speedy prospect out of the University of Florida.
The Chiefs are not a team that usually would make a midseason move unless it is absolutely necessary and for the second straight season the Chiefs made a trade out of necessity. They traded their compensatory third-round pick (from the hire of former Assistant GM Ryan Poles to their GM) and a late sixth-round draft pick from the 2023 NFL Draft. The Chiefs used these two selections out of their 13 selections in the 2023 Draft to get a possible deep threat off the line of scrimmage.
How Did We Get Here?
Kadarius Toney was drafted by the New York Giants in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, Toney was the last first-round pick of former Giants’ General Manager Dave Gettleman. Toney was seen as the best comp to Tyreek Hill in the draft and the Giants needed that for their young core. But Toney was inconsistent or injured during his time as a Giant, but he had a lot of flashes of being great.
But when the Giants moved to Brian Daboll as the head coach at the beginning of the 2022 Offseason, Toney had problems fitting in. He wasn’t making explosive moves or catching deep balls as the Giants moved to a more conservative run-heavy offense under Daboll. Toney also was out and dealing with a Hamstring issue over the past five weeks and seemed like he was in the dog house in New York.
Until this move to Kansas City, there were rumors he might just be done for the year and traded on draft day 2023. Now he heads to Kansas City to an offense that could definitely use him and have him for the next couple of seasons.
It seems like Kansas City was looking for a player who could beat Man Coverage and get off the ball for short and precise routes. There were rumors about going to get Brandin Cooks out of Houston, or inquiring about Elijah Moore from the Jets, but it seems like the Chiefs were able to find the man they wanted for a reasonable price.
What to expect out of Toney?
Toney is an explosive player, he ran a 4.39 40-yard dash and has the explosiveness to get off of the line and past a defender. He played wide receiver, running back, punt returner, and kick returner when he was at Florida and he was named a second-team All-American in 2020. Toney just has ridiculous control with his route running and his footwork is impeccable at the line, moving defensive backs to create separation.
Here’s what to expect, a lot of short passes or go routes with him, the Chiefs’ offense can take some getting used to and they have weird packages and routes for their players to run. Also, expect him to be a punt and kick returner for the Chiefs. Skyy Moore doesn’t have the skill set to be a punt returner and it would be better to have him on offense, and Isiah Pacheco could possibly get more touches in the run game if Toney is catching kicks.
Toney should be seen as a possible speedster and could fill more of the role of the guy who could move the safeties and possibly make the Chiefs’ offense more explosive than it currently is.
Grade on the Trade: B
It’s hard to grade this trade fully without seeing what the player looks like, Toney had only suited up in two games this season and was out due to a hamstring injury (which he disputes) over the past five weeks. The Chiefs gave up some draft capital but left themselves enough to still make more moves before Tuesday’s trade deadline. It’s a savvy move by Brett Veach and the front office to get him in during the bye week and let him learn over the extra days.
The Chiefs were able to get a player who is on a long-term contract and is relatively cheap, he fits the scheme and can take over on return duties over Skyy Moore or Mecole Hardman. He just has some health problems which concern me, he has played in only 12 games over the past year and a half.
He should fit in and play hard, there’s no reason it shouldn’t be a good fit, but the injury concerns and lack of catches when he did play this season do bother me a bit. It’s a solid trade for the Chiefs and for Toney to get a fresh start, he should be suited up and cleared as the Chiefs welcome Tennessee next Sunday Night.