5 things that could happen at the NFL Draft
With the NFL Draft first round only hours away from kicking off in the Windy City of Chicago, we are hearing smoke-screens from all teams, saying they are interested in this person, they will trade the farm to move up for this guy. Smoke-screens aside, I will predict five crazy scenarios that might just be happening tonight….
1. Marcus Mariota will not be a Tennessee Titan by night’s end.
Rumors are swirling that the Titans will not pass on Mariota, because they need a “franchise” quarterback. They do not know what they have in Zach Mettenberger, so I can understand the thought process. My issue, is Mariota the QB to lead your team to the promise land? From the tape I watch, I do not see talent worthy of the second overall pick. Jameis Winston is the only quarterback prospect in this draft I feel confident in saying he will be a starter in the NFL for years to come. The Titans should pick the most sure-fire prospect in the draft: Leonard Williams. However, a draft-and-trade scenario like one that played out between Eli Manning and Philip Rivers in 2004 is not out of the questions.
2. A team will trade up to draft Shane Ray.
Shane Ray has had a rough week. A potential top five pick, dealt with a pot citation earlier in the week that is supposedly crashing his draft stock. Former Buccaneers GM Mark Dominik made the bold declaration that Ray could fall to the fourth round. Fourth round? Have you seen this guy play? Behind Leonard Williams, I have Ray as the second-best defensive lineman. He plays with violence and aggression, a non-stop motor to get to the ball. Even with the citation and reports coming out of issues in college, his talent speaks for itself. I do believe he will fall, but once he gets into the double-digits, a team will see his top-five talent and pull a trigger on a trade to make him a member of their team. He will be a first round pick.
3. Three WR’s will go in the top ten.
Amari Cooper. Kevin White. Devante Parker. Three stud wide receivers that have All-Pro potential. Multiple teams are in play: Jaguars, Raiders, Bears, Rams, and obviously a trade scenario. In a draft that could see more than six receivers go in the first round, the NFL is showing its pass-happy preference.
4. One RB will go in the first round.
I would not draft one in the first round at all. This draft is ridiculously deep at the running back position, over ten backs that have starting-caliber ability. Todd Gurley and Melvin Gordon are in play to go in the first round, the question is, which NFL team will pull the trigger first? Chargers, Cardinals, Cowboys? As a Cowboys fan myself, I will break something tonight if Jerry drafts a running back, Dallas has needs on defense more pressing. A lot of backs will succeed behind the most dominant offensive line in the NFL. The Cardinals are most likely, Bruce Arians loves offensive play-makers and they are very high on Gordon. This is one debate I question daily, and it could change five more times before the draft kicks off tonight.
5. We will see five trades in the first round.
We know multiple teams are attempting to move up, the Eagles, Browns, Jets, Cardinals come to mind. Teams without a first round pick like the Buffalo Bills could make a play if a talented player starts to slide. I expect an active first day, because this is the NFL, and the NFL knows how to stay on top of the news, even in the offseason. No other professional sport captivates an audience without games being played like the NFL.
We will see tonight how it plays out. What do you think? Agree or disagree with any of these? Let me know in the comments below…
Dan Schalk covers the NFL for MFST, you can follow him on Twitter @ffsportstalk