Day 2: Chiefs boost offense, secondary

With three selections in the third round of the NFL draft on Sunday, the Kansas City Chiefs went for a safety, a blocking tight end and a fast, shifty running back from Texas. In the fourth round they got a receiver from Missouri.

Brad Cottam, a 6-foot-7 tight end from Tennessee was taken with the overall 76th selection and will be used to replace Jason Dunn as a blocker and backup to Pro Bowl tight end Tony Gonzalez.

A few minutes earlier, Kansas City made Texas running back Jamaal Charles the 73rd player selected, projecting him as a backup to Larry Johnson and Kolby Smith and a possible kick returner. With the third choice in Sunday's opening round, the Chiefs went for safety DeJuan Morgan of North Carolina State. In the fourth round the Chiefs took Missouri wide receiver Will Franklin with the 105th overall pick. Franklin, who played high school football in the St. Louis area, was the first receiver drafted in the fourth round.

The 6-foot-7, 269-pound Cottam started only seven of the 38 games he played at Tennessee and caught only 21 passes for 341 yards and a touchdown. He missed much of last season with a broken left wrist. The Chiefs passed on Missouri tight end Martin Rucker of St. Joseph, who was taken by Cleveland in the fourth round with the 111th overall pick.

Charles is one of the most accomplished running backs in the history of a school known for great runners, including former Chiefs Pro Bowler Priest Holmes. During a three-year career, the 5-11, 199-pound Charles rushed for 3,328 yards, putting himself in elite company. In the history of the Longhorns, only Ricky Williams, Cedric Benson, Earl Campbell, Chris Gilbert and Vince Young were able to rush for more than 3,000 yards.

He also was a track star, placing first in the 100-meter dash in the Big 12 outdoor track championship as a freshman.

As a high school star in Port Arthur, Texas, Charles broke the city career rushing record of former Oklahoma All-American Joe Washington that had stood for more than 30 years.

Morgan will be used on special teams and be given a chance to compete with the Chiefs' other young safeties.

Other picks from Sunday:

  • Fifth round: Brandon Carr, cornerback, Grand Valley State
  • Sixth round: Barry Richardson, offensive tackle, Clemson
  • Sixth round: Kevin Robinson, wide receiver, Utah
  • Seventh round: Brian Johnston, defensive end, Gardner-Webb
  • Seventh round: Mike Merritt, tight end, Central Florida

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