Right from the start (of last season) this was Clowney and Johnny “Football” Manziel. The two networks combined mentioned JFM’s name over 200 times last night and Clowney’s name more 60. That was more than the other top 5 draft picks combined, Clowney aside. So, for the average fan, that was all they knew or cared to know, but for those of us pseudo draftniks there was much more theater to report. And the movie started early.
Picks one and two went according to plan with Clowney and Robinson then Jacksonville took Blake Bortles, the first reach of the night, with Sammy Watkins sitting in wait. But, it gets worse…The Bills, perennial doormat traded up 5 picks to draft Watkins and thus giving up their 1st round pick next year when they will again be a bottom tier team (Full disclosure I am a Jets fan). Watkins is a very special talent but this draft is receiver deep and giving up a number 1 made no sense at the time. What it did make was Cleveland the big winner! I am not talking about the 2000 new season tickets they sold in 14 hours since the draft, but the football moves. No pun intended.
The Browns got arguably the best CB in the draft and regardless of what you think of Manziel, many scouts had him the highest ranked QB. And, they added two draft picks for next season. These moves gave them flexibility to move around the board and in position to get Marquis Lee in the next round. Bills take notes….started from the bottom AND you will be in Toronto next year. The Raiders, Falcons and Bucs all made safe solid picks and filled needs. Then the reaching started again.
The Vikings reached on Anthony Barr but they do get the cool points award for trading back into the first round and taking Teddy Bridgewater. Detroit’s pick of Ebron could be questioned but it should work out just like the Giants pick of Odell Becham Jr., because Eli needs a Tackle to keep him upright, but Beckham is a talent. One that Buffalo should have waited for and saved a pick. It’s cold up there so maybe that’s it, IDK. Anyways! Titans, Bears and Cowboys did well, really well. Dallas finally got out of their own way. Now the Jets…this is personal. You have been warned!
The Jets filled their biggest need one that was not addressed at all in free agency. It wasn’t sexy but it was smart. You can get a good receiver later (hello, Buffalo…anybody home)? Green Bay was patient and got their man Ha Ha and the Saints got a player that fits what they do and is explosive and replaces Sproles in Cooks. Pittsburgh, The Nati, and San Diego all did well. Baltimore got a name in Mosely. KC and New England get incompletes or to be continued. The Dolphins, question!
Outside of Carolina getting Cam a big target and the only FSU player taken in the 1st round the entire end of the draft was about D! Well, almost the Eagles get the reach of the draft in taking a 3rd round prospect in Smith after trading down once Cooks was taken. Why not just trade out of the round? Chip’s drinking his own juice. The biggest winner may have been the champs. Seattle traded out of the round adding picks and the ability to add depth to a championship roster, leaving all of the teams closely trailing them to take defensive players in an attempt to mimic the winning formula.
Now we have to see if Houston gets its QB and what will Washington and the Colts do now that they can finally make an appearance in the show? Well it was only round 1 and we may have more questions than answers but that’s why we have 6 more rounds or should I say 6 more acts to the play…see you at the Theater.