By: Ben Pagani
The 2017 NFL Draft is in the books, and here is what I think of the first round picks.
1. Cleveland Browns- Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
Many people thought the Browns were going to take a QB, but they did what any team in this position would of done; take the best player in the draft. Garrett has long arms, and is explosive and physical. He will be an immediate impact in the NFL, racking up many sacks.
2. Chicago Bears- Mitchell Trubisky, QB, UNC
The Bears gave up a ton to get Trubisky, and I don’t get it. He will become a solid starter, but is not a franchise QB. They also, passed on a bunch of defensive talent to pick him. Not a smart move.
3. San Francisco 49ers- Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford
Great pick by the 49ers. Thomas is great force, that can work inside or out. He will join the young, promising d-line in San Francisco.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars- Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
Leonard Fournette is a great player, and will be an immediate impact in the Jags backfield. The Jags definitely need a running back, but I don’t like running backs going so early. As many of us have seen before, you can find a great running back on day 2 or 3. Fournette, however, is a special talent, and will without a doubt be the Jags number 1 running back next year.
5. Tennessee Titans- Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan
Davis is a pro-ready wide receiver, that will significantly help the Titans weak receiving core. He has battled some injuries, causing him to sit out Pro Day, but is a very solid player. The Titans need a receiver, so why not pick the best receiver in the draft? Solid pick.
6. New York Jets- Jamal Adams, SS, LSU
The Jets needed someone desperately to improve their secondary, and Adams definitely will. He can cover tight ends and stuff the run. He can also play both safety positions. I think everyone, including the Jets, were surprised Jamal fell this far in the draft.
7. Los Angeles Chargers- Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
Williams is a strong, physical receiver that will add toughness to the Chargers receiving core. He will be alongside Keenan Allen and Travis Benjamin, to form a nice little receiving core in Los Angeles. However, Williams creates little separation, causing him to struggle against bigger named corners.
8. Carolina Panthers- Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford
McCaffrey has great vision, and is a great pass catcher in the slot. He adds another threat to the Panthers offense next to Cam Newton. He also fits better in the Panthers offense than Fournette would of.
9. Cincinnati Bengals- John Ross, WR, Washington
This offense will be hard to stop. The Bengals have just added another weapon to their receiving core in John Ross. They already have AJ Green, a top 5 receiver, and a solid receiver in Brandon LaFell. Ross is fast as lightning, running a 4.22 in the forty yard dash. The only problem with Ross is his bad knees. He's had knee injuries throughout his whole career.
10. Kansas City Chiefs (via Bills)- Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech
The Chiefs picked Mahomes to ensure they have an NFL ready QB when Alex Smith leaves. Mahomes is a gunslinger, that lacks field vision. The reasons I don't like this pick is because I believe Alex Smith has a few solid years left, and I also believe Deshaun Watson is a better QB.
11. New Orleans Saints- Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State
The Saints desperately needed someone to improve their secondary, and it worked out. The best CB in the draft in Marshon Lattimore fell to their pick. Lattimore is athletic, physical, and if great at stopping the run.
12. Houston Texans (via Browns)- Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson
The Texans gave up a lot to get Watson, but I think it was worth it. He is by far the most talented QB on the Texans and they desperately needed one. He will have a very talented target in DeAndre Hopkins, and the Texans defense ranked first in the league last year. He just needs to limit his interceptions.
13. Arizona Cardinals- Haason Reddick, LB, Temple
The Cardinals filled a needed position and got value by drafting Reddick. He can play LB on early downs, and he can play DE and rush the passer. Reddick will play alongside Bucannon and Jones to form a very athletic LB core.
14. Philadelphia Eagles (via Vikings)- Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee
The Eagles went for a save pick on this one. Barnett is explosive off the snap, allowing him to rack up the sacks. The Eagles passed on a much needed cornerback, and a couple of other great players who fell to this point. However, Barnett will form a “big 3” with Brandon Graham and Chris Long, and will be productive for the Eagles.
15. Indianapolis Colts- Malik Hooker, FS, Ohio State
Hooker is one of many great players that fell way too far in this draft. Hooker will fill the Colts much needed safety position. He is great in coverage and causing turnovers with 8 interceptions in 2016. Great situation and great pick.
16. Baltimore Ravens- Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama
Secondary is a need for the Ravens, and this picked helped fill that need. Humphrey is physical and will develop into a great shutdown corner. I just think there was much better talent on the board that Baltimore could of selected instead of Humphrey.
17. Washington Redskins- Jonathan Allen, DT, Alabama
Allen is an absolute steal. The Redskins needed to improve their pass rush, and with this pick, they did. Allen has fast hands and will play a big part in stuffing the run. The Redskins were scared they wouldn't get talent they needed at this position at this pick, but luckily for them Allen fell this far in the draft.
18. Tennessee Titans- Adoree’ Jackson, CB, USC
Cornerback was a need for the Titans and they got one here. Jackson is crazy athletic and explosive. He is also a great return man. However, he lacks size and strength.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama
If your play fantasy football, and need a QB, draft Jameis Winston. With the addition of Howard, the Bucs now have an amazing receiving core. With explosive DeSean Jackson, Mike Evans, and now O.J. Howard for Winston to throw to. Also, Howard is a great blocker who will help in the run game. Great pick and absolute steal by the Bucs.
20. Denver Broncos- Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
Bolles has long arms and great feet. He is physical at the line and able to defend big time pass rushers. He will fit into the Broncos o-line nicely, something they needed last year.
21. Detroit Lions- Jarrad Davis, LB, Florida
The Lions had one of the worst linebacking groups in the league last year, and I don't think Davis really changed that. Davis is a true three-down defender who can do it all. Davis just can't stay healthy, which hurt his stock. Also, there was much better talent on the board, at this position, at this pick.
22. Miami Dolphins- Charles Harris, LB, Missouri
Harris is explosive off the line and has great technique. He also creates havoc off the edge. Harris is one of the best defensive ends in the draft and will be an instant force in the NFL. He will play alongside Cameron Wake, forming a duo.
23. New York Giants- Evan Engram, TE, Ole Miss
The Giants desperately needed (and still need) a running back and with Dalvin Cook still available, that could of been the way to go. Engram is basically a big wide receiver. He's explosive and a great catcher. However, Engram lacks blocking skills, so I expect to see him mostly on passing downs. Lastly, there was a better TE on the board in David Njoku. On the plus side though, this offense won't be stopped. With OBJ, Brandon Marshall, Sterling Shepard, and now Evan Engram. This attack would scare any defense.
24. Oakland Raiders- Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State
Conley was expected to be a sure first rounder, and a top 2 CB in the draft. This is until he was being investigated for a rape allegation. Conley is a shutdown corner, and he can stay with most receivers. I just don't know how the rape allegation will turn out.
25. Cleveland Browns (via Texans)- Jabrill Peppers, SS, Michigan
Peppers can play the run, cover slot receivers, make a huge impact on the blitz, and contribute on special teams. He's a great player and I'm surprised he fell this far. The problem being, what do the Browns do with him? I guess play him as a CB/S hybrid, but I just don't understand this pick.
26. Atlanta Falcons (via Seahawks)- Takkarist McKinley, LB, UCLA
The Falcons traded up in the draft to select McKinley. McKinley is a speed rusher, and will complement Vic Beasley nicely. He's battled some shoulder injuries, but I think he will develop into a solid NFL pass rusher.
27. Buffalo Bills (via Chiefs)- Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU
White can play outside and in the slot. He also benefits as a return man. He will fill Stephon Gilmore’s shoes who left for the Patriots this offseason. He will be an instant starter for the Bills, and will look to have a solid rookie season.
28. Dallas Cowboys- Taco Charlton, DE, Michigan
This is another need and value pick. Charlton is a great player, and the Cowboys need his position. Charlton has speed, power, strength, and length, and will develop into a great player.
29. Cleveland Browns (via Packers)- David Njoku, TE, Miami
Njoku is physical, a great catcher, and can get big yards after a catch. However, he still needs to improve his run blocking and route running. He will be a huge threat in the red zone, and should get a few touchdowns this year. The reasons I don't like this pick is because the Browns already have a solid tight end in Gary Barnidge, and they still need a quarterback.
30. Pittsburgh Steelers- T.J. Watt, LB, Wisconsin
With James Harrison getting older the Steelers needed another linebacker. Watt is an excellent athlete and is always giving it everything he's got. And yes. Yes, he's J.J. Watt’s brother.
31. San Francisco 49ers (via Seahawks)- Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama
The 49ers traded down, but still got an absolute steal. Foster is intelligent, fast, and has speed and toughness. He is an NFL ready player, however, he has battled shoulder injuries. Great pick by the 49ers.
32. New Orleans Saints (via Patriots)- Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin
The Saints could have gone with another defensive player, but decided to take an offensive tackle here. Ramczyk is a pro ready player with great technique. He will play alongside Zach Strief to form a solid o-line for the Saints.
Photo: (USA Today)