A few thoughts before tonight’s NFL Draft

Two blog posts in a day? *GASP* The end is surely nigh!

For those who don’t know, I’ve been an NFL Draft junkie since I was 14. Seriously, I used to do analysis for the local sports talk radio station in Tallahassee on it.

That said, here are a few of my thoughts heading into tonight’s selections:

CLEVELAND BROWNS — If the Browns take Trubisky first, they deserve every boo they get. I watched Mitch at UNC. He’s a solid player with some really good attributes. Know what he doesn’t have? Experience. The guy started all of 13 games in college, and in no way does that make for an NFL resume. Not even close (see Mark Sanchez, Akili Smith, Blake Bortles, etc.).

Garrett’s your pick, Brownies. Don’t spike yourselves in the nads by choosing otherwise unless you can land the mother of all trades to move down.

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS — If Cam Robinson or Ruben Foster are there at 19, TAKE THEM! Otherwise, trade down if you can find a partner. I love Dalvin Cook, but he does come with legit injury concerns and the Bucs have other, more pressing needs to fill. It also bears mentioning that this is a very deep RB class, meaning they’ll inevitably have the chance to snare one in later rounds. (Dalvin n early Round 2?)

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS — Don’t overthink it, Jags. Take Fournette and be done with it. Rumors abound that Tom Coughlin loves Deshaun Watson, and while I do, too, I don’t in the first round. Great kid, enormous talent, but a project nonetheless.

Learn from your Blake Mistake, guys. Don’t reach for a QB when you’ve got tons of other needs, especially at OL which couldn’t block a statue last year.

WATCH THE BACK HALF — Depending on how the nights’ first half goes, the back half could make for a lot of intrigue. There are several teams in need of a QB, though most (I think) have enough sense to know that none of these prospects are worth drafting high. Take Watson, for instance. A team would be nuts to take him in the Top 20. The Pittsburgh Steelers at pick 30, on the other hand, could be a magical fit. Ben Roethlisberger is in the twilight of his career, and the team needs an heir apparent. Watson could ride the pine with no pressure from fans to start then slip in when Big Ben retires, conceivably without some much as hiccup to offensive production. (see Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay).

The Saints, Cardinals, Chargers, and Chiefs all bring similar situations with established veteran starters.

If Watson and others fall (or Dalvin, for that matter), expect some jostling as teams move back into the late-first round to get them.

PRIMETIME STILL SUCKS — The NFL Draft should be held at noon on a Saturday, period. End of story. In moving this even to primetime, ESPN might as well have been announcing to the world that they hate sunshine and puppies.

Stop hating sunshine and puppies, ESPN. Do what’s right and move the Draft back to Saturdays… and while you’re at it, STOP FIRING PEOPLE!!!

Happy Draft Night, y’all! I’ll be on Twitter for as long as I can stay awake if you want to chat picks (@ianjmalone).

IJM

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