We seen some interesting things during the first round of the NFL Draft in Philadelphia. Some team’s decisions had many fans cheering and getting pumped up for the upcoming season. While other teams had their fans scratching their heads wondering what was their method behind the madness. Just like years before, the 2017 draft had some players going both earlier and later in the first round. For most part, the majority of teams took who they were expected to. Here’s a look at the winners and losers on the first day of the NFL draft.
San Francisco 49ers: John Lynch is proving he can be a shrewd general manager. The 49ers trade with the Bears should have fans giving him a thumbs up all the way to kickoff. They still got their man trading down one spot in Solomon Thomas and also picked up an extra 3rd and 4th round pick in the deal. The 49ers used one of the picks from the Bears in part of a trade with the Seattle Seahawks to move back into the first round where they drafted Reuben Foster. Both picks will have an immediate impact on the 49ers defense.
Cleveland Browns: I for one commend the Browns for not drafting a quarterback in the first round. They don’t need one. Taking Myles Garrett with the top overall pick was a no brainer and trading down seemed like a wise move. The Bears taking Trubisky probably was a motivator in doing so. Taking Jabrill Peppers with the 25th pick ( from Houston) was a solid grab for a team that needs secondary help. Then they made a trade with the Packers to make their third first round pick in David Njoku. The draft’s second best tight end. Cleveland did a stellar job managing their draft picks to what fans hope will be a successful rebuild.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Tom Coughlin loves power runners and he got a great one in Fournette. Expect the LSU Tiger to contribute from day one as the Jaguars try to climb to the top of the AFC South. Fournette averaged 6.2 yards per carry for his career in Baton Rouge and has the size and speed to accomplish a similar feat in the NFL. Establishing a solid rushing attack was a top priority for Coughlin and it looks like he did just that.
Houston Texans: GM Rick Smith has been trying to get himself out of some hot water ever since the Brock Osweiler debacle. He took the first step in that direction by sending the highly paid QB to Cleveland. Then he made a trade with the Browns to pick up DeShaun Watson with the 12th pick. Watson won’t start immediately, but he will make a big impact with the Texans early in his career. He’s a proven winner and leader which is something the Texans desperately need under center.
Tennessee Titans: The Titans needed to fill some team needs in a big way and did so in the first round. Taking Corey Davis with the 5th overall pick (from the Rams) is a gamble, but he is a tremendous talent and could become the “go to guy” for Mariota in the future. The Titans then filled their secondary void drafting Adoree’ Jackson with the 18th pick. Jackson is a speedy corner who plays aggressive and will fit in perfectly with Tennessee.
Chicago Bears: The Bears may very well have picked up their future franchise quarterback, but the deal with San Francisco seemed unnecessary. Trubisky was the top ranked option at that position, but there was no need to trade up to get him as the 49ers seemed interested in Thomas all along. Also add in that they gave up three other draft picks which in turn, could hurt the Bears as they try to rebuild and get back to the top of the NFC North.
Kansas City Chiefs: Pat Mahomes could become the best quarterback from the first round, but he would’ve been there later in the round. He does have a big arm and can make downfield throws, but he’s a couple of years away from starting in the NFL. It’s a good pickup, but a bad pickup that high in the draft. Giving up a 3rd round pick this year and a 1st round pick next year was just too much to give up for the Texas Tech QB.
Cincinnati Bengals: John Ross would have been a great pickup for any team in the draft. Especially with his hype after breaking the 40 yard dash record at the NFL combine. The issue with the Bengals taking him with the 9th pick is that they needed so much on defense and wasted their opportunity in making some defensive headway to draft the speedster out of Washington. Bengals owner Mike Brown loves players with a lot of speed, but he needs to understand that defense wins championships.
Philadelphia Eagles: Everyone thought that the Eagles were going to take Reuben Foster with the 14th pick, but they decided to go into another direction. This pick is another head scratching move as taking Derek Barnett is a big gamble. While he’s a great defensive end, his career in the NFL will be hit or miss. I’m not sure if Foster’s recent issues had anything to do with their decision, but this is a case of another player being taken too early.