Every single team in the NFL drafted some players last week. Not all of them fleeced one of their sometimes opponents, but they all did something at least somewhat good. Here are some good things done by teams from our favored north division.
K.I.S.S. Keep it simple, stupid. Wiser words never came in a meaner format, and the Bears lived up to them drafting Roquan Smith no. 8 overall. The Georgia linebacker is expected to start right away, and is a ballhawk with strong blitzing skills without otherwise giving up on his normal responsibilities each play. Its a good pick. Good draft overall. Good job.
The Lions, most feel, did not have a particularly good draft. Some say that Detroit GM “had his best day during Rounds 4-7 on Day 3” which, if true, is huge. Huge. But this writer believes his best move came when he moved up to nab Kerryon Johnson, running back, in the second round. The move came after a run on backs, and the Man Upstairs knows Detroit could use some backfield help.
Green Bay Packers
The Packers had the 14th overall pick. Somewhat controversially, they traded out of that spot, and out of a chance to draft two players (Tremaine Edmunds and Derwin James) who project as immediate impact guys, and back to 27th. In return, the Pack gained New Orleans’ first found pick in 2019. The Packers then traded back up, moving into Seattle’s spot at 18, while giving up a third round pick in this year’s draft. Overall, therefore, the Packers moved 4 spots back while trading a first round pick for a third round choice. Much speculation suggests that, given ties to Seattle, the teams had discussed the possibility of the move pre-draft. Green Bay then took Jaire Alexander, one of the top corners in the draft. No draft can be truly graded until a few years have passed. What we can say, immediately, is that the Packers’ new GM Brian Gutentagen understand how to use the board.
Let’s just get it out of the way: the Vikings had a boring draft. Maybe that won’t be the worst thing. The first-round choice of Mike Hughes at cornerback addresses a pending need, but the best move was nabbing the Vikings tackle Brian O’Neill from Pittsburgh in the second round. Although tackles had been coming off the board (suggesting the Vikings, who are thin at the position, maybe should have moved up), plenty of lineman were available at pick 62, and the team had offensive line needs virtually across the board. As such, they were able to take whomever they considered the best offensive lineman, and presumably believed that was O’Neill. He has experience at both tackle spots. Nice work. Good job.