The NFL draft has grown into such a spectacle that it’s hard to right anything about it that no one else has. The fact that it’s not in New York for the first time in a long time is obviously going to be an interesting story. Despite the fact that it’s so close to home I never seriously considered going. To be honest it just doesn’t like it would be very much to be there in person. It’s slow to watch on TV, I can’t imagine that in person it would be much more exciting. I hope I end up knowing someone who goes in person so I can find out their thoughts after the fact.
In the meantime, here are seven (mostly) foolish predictions for the first round:
1. We will know well before the clock starts ticking that James Winston is indeed the first overall pick.
Remember when we used to know weeks in advance because contracts would already be worked out? It’s weird that doesn’t happen anymore. But there doesn’t seem to be any doubt at this point that Winston will be the guy.
2. Marcus Mariota will go 2nd
It might not be the Titans but they are going to take advantage of this being such a two QB draft and trading the pick if they don’t want him. I don’t think the Phillip Rivers trade happens, but someone moves up to grab him.
3. No other QB will go in the 1st round
This isn’t that bold since recent history suggests it happens pretty frequently, but whatever. I need at least a softball or two.
4. The Bears draft a defensive player
With the news that the Bears won’t bring back Shea McClellin for his 5th year option mean they now have an even bigger need on defense. Everyone thinks that it will be one of the two WRs (Kevin White or Amari Cooper), but things could have changed yesterday. Leonard Williams, Donte Fowler and Vic Beasley most likely will all be gone, but something always goes different than people think. One of those guys will slip to 7 and the Bears will grab them.
5. Seven WRs go in the first round
You have to go back to 2004 for the last time 7 went in the first round. 2009, 2007 and 2005 all had six guys taken. Amari Cooper and Kevin White are 100% locks and both could go in the top 10. Breshad Perriman and DaeVante Parker seem pretty safe bets. Phillip Dorsett and Dorial Green-Beckham both have pretty decent shots. Nelson Agholor and Jalen Strong are both fringe prospects. So it’s possible.
6. The death of the 1st round RB is greatly exaggerated
Only four running backs total have gone in the first round in the last four years. Todd Gurley has been flying up draft boards and Melvin Gordon should go in the top 20. Tevin Coleman, Duke Johnson and Ameer Abdullah all look like 2nd round picks, but one of them will sneak into the 1st round.
7. There will be more defensive players drafted then offensive players in round one
There are a lot of good defensive players out there this year and it seems like teams are starting to build more around defense again. So I expect to see a lot of defensive players taken in the first round.