With the 96th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Kansas City Chiefs took TCU offensive lineman Lucas Niang. The Arrowhead Report Roundtable breaks down the selection and answers the question: what do you think of the pick?
Jordan Foote: Although a ton of people (myself included) were calling for Bryce Hall at pick No. 96, Lucas Niang is a future starting tackle. Cutting Eric Fisher after the 2020 campaign would save approximately $11 million against the salary cap, which is huge. Regardless of how the Chiefs choose to develop Niang in year one, he could take over full-time in year two and free up some money for Patrick Mahomes' upcoming megadeal. The value was great, and the pick was good.
Sam Hays: TCU tackle Lucas Niang is one of the most accomplished offensive linemen in the draft class, allowing zero sacks and a pressure rate of 3.1% in 975 pass-blocking snaps over his last three seasons with the Horned Frogs. The Chiefs have already discussed moving Niang to guard and Niang has said he is willing to go along with it. However, this will be a whole new experience for Niang. He had just two snaps in his college career outside of right tackle and neither came at guard or center. The best bet for Niang is to keep him honed in with the tackle position, where he has proven his ability, as the backup to LT Eric Fisher and RT Mitchell Schwartz until he can replace one of them in the future.
Conner Christopherson: Lucas Niang is a great attempt by the Chiefs to start building towards a future where Mahomes is on a mega-deal. The TCU prospect fell in the draft because of concerns about his injured hip, but the innate talent is there. If the Chiefs wish to cut Eric Fisher in 2021, they could save over $14 million against the cap, so Niang might be the left tackle of the future for the Chiefs.
Mark Van Sickle: Lucas Niang, an offensive tackle from TCU, fills a depth need for the Kansas City Chiefs as they look to the future to protect MVP Patrick Mahomes. He is a nasty run blocker and has the chance to become an elite pass-blocker at the next level. The Chiefs got a nice offensive line piece in the third round.
Joe Andrews: Mitch Schwartz won’t be around forever. Lucas Niang has the potential to be his replacement and could play guard early on. If he stays healthy, he has the chance to become something worth way more than a third-round pick.
Jacob Harris: I don’t know anything about anybody in this draft. I hope Lucas Niang does a good job and has lots of fun.