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1 – You cannot put anything past the Cleveland Browns but it is hard to overstate what a shocking and misguided decision it would be to take Josh Allen first overall, which is leading most of us to believe it is a smokescreen. The purpose of that smokescreen is up for debate but it still feels like Sam Darnold will ultimately end up being the guy. It is bizarre Josh Rosen (and even Baker Mayfield to an extent) aren’t in the discussion but if the Browns are really down to Darnold or Allen, it is a complete no brainer.
2 – It remains to be seen how much heat they will take but if the New York Giants stay put and take a running back second overall, the most replaceable position in football, it would be an alarming start to Dave Gettleman’s tenure. Eli Manning is 37 years old and looked far from ready to be a top tier starter for another few seasons in 2017 but the Giants are passing on Rosen or Mayfield? This stinks of short sighted thinking. If they cannot trade back (likely their ideal scenario), it should be a no brainer to take Bradley Chubb if they aren’t going quarterback (which they should).
3 – The Jets are in a rare position where the majority of their fan base is going to be happy on night one of the NFL Draft if they select one of two players: Josh Rosen or Baker Mayfield. One of those two will 100% be on the board. You almost cannot mess this up. Personally, I have Rosen rated slightly higher but I think there is a credible argument to made that either Mayfield, Rosen or Darnold are QB1 in this class, which is a nice thing to get your hands on at #3.
4 – It is probably just the Jets fan in me but Josh Allen and Buffalo feel destined for a marriage. I cannot see Denver taking that swing and the Bills have to be desperate to move up to get their signal caller. If one quarterback will fall out of the top five, it will be Allen and Buffalo seems most likely to pounce. Allen. AJ McCarron. Nathan Peterman. Enjoy it, Western New York!
5 – Lamar Jackson is going in the first round (Mason Rudolph very well may too). For Jackson, the most intriguing spots to keep an eye on are the Chargers, Ravens and Saints. New Orleans would be particularly interesting considering the weapons and system he’d walk into after taking over for Brees in 2018 (assuming this is his last season).
6 – A player who isn’t getting a ton of buzz because of all the quarterback, trade up and Saquon Barkley chatter is cornerback Denzel Ward, who absolutely merits a top ten selection and could be primed for Marshon Lattimore type rookie season. The Bucs could be a team to watch when it comes to making a move for Ward.
7 – This is an uninspiring wide receiver and tight end class. However, Courtland Sutton seems to be making a late charge to be the first receiver selected (and should be). Mike Gesicki feels like a player who will go late in the first round or early in the second round and then leaves many wondering how he dropped that far. For the Jets, I’m curious if they take a day three swing on Antonio Callaway (they hosted him for a visit), despite his off the field problems.
8 – By the end of the second round, I expect all four AFC East teams to have drafted a quarterback. Kyle Lauletta has commonly been linked with the Patriots and if the Bills do not land Allen, they could be in the market for Mason Rudolph. Miami could also be a sneaky team to watch depending on how the board breaks. A Jets fan should be hoping they leave the draft with Rosen or Mayfield and that no other AFC East leaves the draft with the one they do not select.
9 – Increased temperature take: Saquon Barkley will not lead all rookie running backs in rushing yards or total offensive yards.
10 – Not Sexy: They are not flashy positions but both Quenton Nelson and Roquan Smith feel like they will inevitably be in the rookie of the year discussion and perennial All-Pros. Both players will be ready to start from day one.
11 – Minkah Fitzpatrick would be over-drafted if he goes in the top ten. Derwin James is the top safety in this class and both Ward and Josh Jackson from Iowa are superior cornerback prospects. If Fitzpatrick did not go to Alabama, he would probably be more widely mocked somewhere in the 20s.
12 – How I would rank the quarterback prospects from the past two years:
- Deshaun Watson
- Patrick Mahomes/Josh Rosen
- Baker Mayfield/Sam Darnold
- Lamar Jackson/Mitch Trubisky
- DeShone Kizer/Josh Allen/Mason Rudolph
This week’s TOJ Recap!
- Joe Caporoso on top QBs in NFL Draft
- Dan Mosher with CB targets
- Play Like A Jet Baker Mayfield Podcast
- Michael Nania on mid round RBs
- TOJ Podcast with Patrick Claybon
- TOJ Buffett on late round targets
- The Jet Take Podcast with Joel Corry
- Joe Caporoso on 1260The Score
- Connor Rogers on 1260The Score
- Joe Caporoso and Connor Rogers Inside The War Room
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