So hopefully you read the first Views this week where I discussed the winners and losers from the first round of the NFL draft. Today is a continuation of that with who won, and lost, the second and third day of the draft. I did watch all of the draft on Friday night, only checking in a few times on Saturday because who has time to watch seven more hours of the NFL draft.
I mean, granted, we are supposed to be socially distant, but it was nice out this weekend. Hope everyone was able to get outside and enjoy these days despite the ongoing situation. Helps the mind and fresh air shouldn’t hurt too many people.
On with the winners and losers.
Tampa Bay - You can call me a homer all you want but Tampa Bay did exactly what they needed to do in this draft with every single selection. Maybe it’s the Tom Brady high, but the Bucs filled every position of need. They got a safety in the second round, two running backs, defensive depth at two positions and a potential new slot receiver.
Tompa Bay, (please shoot me for typing this), after this draft and what they bring back, they could make a good run at the playoffs if everyone stays healthy and we actually see the season played out. Just a solid draft from top to bottom.
Baltimore - Even with a new general manager, the Ravens continue to make other teams look silly in the draft. Their first choice on the second night was more of a luxury, but J.K. Dobbins at running back can spell Mark Ingram and make an already-lethal ground game better. Defensive tackle Justin Madubuike gives them more depth in the interior and wide receiver Devin Davuernay was needed for Lamar Jackson to have another guy to throw to.
The Ravens also did a great job of getting Marshall Yanda’s replacement on the offensive line in Michigan product Ben Bresdon. Baltimore also picked up Iowa Hawkeye Geno Stone in the seventh round. Stone could have gone as high as the fourth or fifth so it was a great value choice.
New Orleans - The Saints only had three picks from the second round on but they made three great selections. They took linebacker Zach Baun in the third round. Baun was at the top of the second round in some mock drafts, so getting him where they were able to speaks volumes about the value they were able to get. New Orleans also possibly got their tight end of the future in the fourth in Dayton’s Adam Trautmen. Trautmen was another guy that could have gone in the second round so having him fall to the fourth was a great thing for the Saints.They also picked up Tayson Hill’s replacement in Tommy Stevens in the seventh round.
Dallas - Hey, I’m just as surprised as you that Dallas drafted well. Maybe having Jerry Jones on his fancy super yacht was a great idea. The Cowboys stole Trevon Diggs in the second round, I had him going in the first round, at cornerback. Dallas needed to replace Byron Jones and they did exactly that. The Cowboys also got a new center in Tyler Bisdaisz to fill the open slot from retirement. Dallas then got another cornerback to continue to build depth at that position.
Teams cannot have enough cornerbacks in today’s NFL.
Minnesota - The Vikings did everything they had to do in this draft, honestly. I was impressed with their selections as they were able to get new starters and address depth at various positions. Getting offensive tackle Ezra Cleveland was easily their best decision. The Vikings are horrid at the end of the offensive line so Cleveland should be a Day One starter on either side. Cornerback Cameron Dantzler was another great choice as Minnesota needed to replace a lot of lost depth with that position. He could start someday.
Minnesota also picked up Troy Dye at linebacker. I like this pick as the Vikings have a hard time covering tight ends so Dye might be able to help with that. They also got Iowa quarterback Nate Stanley to be a quality backup for a long time. I doubt he ever starts but there are a lot worse guys that can hold a clipboard.
Green Bay Packers - Wow. For as good as the five teams listed above picked, the Packers were the polar opposite. They did not address their biggest need of wide receiver in one of the deepest receiver drafts in recent memory. Instead they add a power back to an already crowded backfield and made some questionable choices otherwise.
Packers fans cannot be happy with this draft, and if they are, I wonder how much they really know about the lack of weapons Aaron Rodgers had last year.
Philadelphia - Look, this comes down to just their second round pick and it’s a lot like the Packers’ first round choice. The Eagles took quarterback Jalen Hurts in the second round. Yes, Carson Wentz gets hurt every year, but with the other needs the Eagles had, taking a one read quarterback this early was a bad idea. They should have waited for Jacob Eason or Jake Fromm in the fourth round on. Sometimes a pick kills an entire draft, this is one of them.
Chicago - The Bears didn’t really do anything great this year. They drafted a tight end despite having a big tight end already and failed to address their offensive line. Expect another bad year from Tarik Cohen and David Montgomery with the Bears not giving them any better blocking.
New England - The Patriots always draft a little weirdly, but this year they really took the cake. They doubled up on numerous positions and reached on most of the players. They always have their own agenda and seem to make Pro Bowl players out of thin air, but this year was just off for them. That might be how they like it, but it’s tough to support that kind of decision-making.
Running backs - I mentioned this in my last edition but they are a dime a dozen and it’s hard to draft any. I think I read there was a near record, or was a record, fewest number running backs selected. The game has evolved from run-heavy to more pass happy, with a platoon squad of running backs. There were some great ones selected this year, but as a whole, the position has less and less value every passing year. This draft really showcased that.
So there you have it. Some of the good teams that made good moves, some good teams making bad moves and bad teams making bad moves. Looking forward to seeing how this rookie crop performs this season, if they play.