Like many NFL teams, the Kansas City Chiefs had an interest in bolstering their depth at linebacker in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Kansas City had eight picks in the draft, and didn't select one linebacker, though the club was rather thin at inside linebacker. With the start of training camp just weeks away, the Chiefs may have found a hidden gem in Dexter Heyman.
In his senior season at Louisville, Heyman shined. He recorded 90 tackles, 4.5 sacks, three interceptions and one forced fumble in the 2011 season, and was the winner of the Howard Schnellenberger Award, which is presented annually to the most outstanding player in the Louisville-Kentucky rivalry game.
An undrafted free agent, Heyman is motivated by the teams that overlooked his talent, and is excited about the prospect of earning a spot on the Chiefs' roster.
Whether you are drafted or not, you have to come into this league with a chip on your shoulder and you have to make a name for yourself, Heyman said, according to KCChiefs.com. As for me and my personal situation, I'm just really happy to be here and I'm blessed that somebody gave me a chance to come out and compete at a level I've always dreamed of competing at.
The Chiefs boast a pair of veterans in Derrick Johnson, and Tamba Hali, who have been with Kansas City since 2005 and 2006, respectively. Their influence might be an important factor in Heyman's development.
Though his speed has worried many scouts, Heyman has a reputation for being a hard-working and fluid linebacker with sharp instincts.
Heyman still has a long way before he makes a genuine impact in the NFL, but he has a solid chance of making the Chiefs roster since Demorrio Williams was released.
Heyman gets his first opportunity to prove himself with a pre-season game against the Arizona Cardinals at home on Aug.10.