NFL Notes: Week 3

What looked like a “meh” week of football ended up being the opposite. Games we thought were locks were far from it, and we finally got to see Baker Mayfield. On top of that, there were SO MANY bad decisions made. The roughing the passer penalty still sucks.

Here’s a look at a weird week of storylines.

Personal Foul, Touching the Passer

This has become a recurring theme, but there’s still something new to add on to it every week. Clay Matthews was flagged again. That isn’t new. What is new is the increased injury risk to pass rushers making attempts to decrease injury risk to quarterbacks. That was a weird sentence.

Miami Dolphins defensive lineman William Hayes suffered a torn ACL while trying to avoid putting his body weight on Derek Carr. Hopefully the league sees this and realizes the new rules benefit nobody, and pose risks much greater than a 15 yard penalty.

The Bills beat the Vikings. Yes, really.

It wasn’t some lucky bounce last-second win either. Buffalo dominated the Vikings all day en route to a 27-6 victory. Minnesota didn’t score until late in the fourth quarter.  It was a pretty embarrassing performance.

Meanwhile, Josh Allen, who had been nothing short of abysmal threw for nearly 200 yards with a touchdown an no picks. He tacked on another two touchdowns on the ground, AND he hurdled a guy.

The Patriots lost to the Lions. Yes, really.

The newly acquired Josh Gordon was inactive on Sunday night.

Quick side note — Why was this the Sunday night game? I know it was Matt Patricia vs. Bill Belichick, but who thought this was the best game of Week 3?

Anyway, the Patriots might have wanted Gordon to suit up. Instead, they relied their run game, which was not great.

Perhaps more concerning was the predictability of the Patriot offense. Rookie running back Sony Michel played a season-high 23 offensive snaps, just under half of New England’s total. He touched the ball on 65 percent of those snaps, totaling 49 yards from scrimmage. The Lions might be bad, but the Patriots made it easy for them. This seems like poor game planning, but the Patriots don’t do that. Until now, I guess.

I shouldn’t have to say this, but it is not time to panic. Tom Brady is still their quarterback.

Houston, you have a problem

If you remember, I picked Bill O’brien to win Coach of the Year. I didn’t expect him to really do any of the work, though. I just though the Texans would be good and he’d win. Think of Jason Garrett in 2016. He didn’t do anything, but the turnaround earned him the award.

Bill O’brien might be doing too much. A team with as much talent as the Texans should not start 0-3. Blaine Gabbert and Eli Manning, handed them two of those losses, with the latter being a home game. Most of their problems can be traced to O’brien. It’s been a season of poor planning for crappy offenses and not letting Deshaun Watson play to his potential.

Raiders can’t hang

Soon after Jon Gruden said a good pass-rusher was hard to find (yikes), the Raiders blew their third second half lead in as many games. They have yet to score points in the fourth quarter. They came close on Sunday, with a chance to take a lead late in the game. Alas, they did not and Carr threw an interception in the red zone. A few plays later, Albert Wilson iced the game with a long touchdown reception.

You’re in, rookie

Going into Week 3, the only quarterbacks drafted in the first round not to see regular season action were Baker Mayfield and Josh Rosen. Both of them played this week, but the situations were very different.

Mayfield came in mid-way through the second quarter on Thursday night when Tyrod Taylor left the game, and led the Browns to a comeback win over the Jets. It was pretty fun to watch.

The Cardinals were down two with four minutes left, and THAT’S when they decided to put Rosen in the game. I’m all for rookies gaining experience, but making his debut on a potential game winning drive seems like a poor choice. Rosen proceeded to throw an interception, and the Cardinals lost. It wasn’t that fun to watch.

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NFL Notes: Week 2

A little while ago you saw my predictions for the 2018 season. Through two weeks, some of those look pretty good, and some look pretty bad. After this week, a couple surprising 2-0 teams emerged. There are also a fair amount of 0-2 teams. Since 2002, when the current playoff system was implemented, only about 10.5% of 0-2 have made the postseason. That’s a cool fact, but there was some much cooler stuff that happened in Week 2. Let’s take a gander.

FitzMagic

Not a lot of people know this, but Ryan Fitzpatrick went to Harvard. The 35-year-old quarterback threw for 402 yards and four touchdowns against the defending Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. This was his second straight 400 yard performance, giving him over 800 yards, 8 passing touchdowns, and another rushing touchdown so far. DeSean Jackson, who caught a 75-yard TD on the first play from scrimmage, has already expressed his desire for Fitzpatrick to remain the starter after Jameis Winston’s suspension is up. I’d have to agree with him.

The seemingly new “FitzMagic” name caught the attention of another NFL player who shares a name with the quarterback. Miami Dolphins safety Minkah Fitzpatrick filed a trademark application for “FitzMagic.” He picked up the nickname in high school, and it appears he wants it back.

Mahomes Goes Mad

Ryan Fitzpatrick isn’t the only QB slinging large quantities of touchdowns. First year starter Patrick Mahomes has 10 through two weeks so far. That includes six in Week 2 against the Steelers. Consider yourself lucky if you have him on your fantasy team. The kid is a stud. The Chiefs were lucky to have Mahomes, as the defense allowed a taped together Ben Roethlisberger to throw for 450 yards and three touchdowns of his own.

Are the Saints okay?

The Saints dropped their season opener to Tampa Bay, and struggled mightily against the Browns in Week 2. Both of these games were at home. New Orleans really should be 0-2, but [now former] Cleveland kicker Zane Gonzalez missed four kicks, costing eight points. It was a three point game. Sean Payton and company can thank Gonzalez for their Week 2 win, but they should probably get it together soon.

The Rodgers Rule

Aaron Rodgers suffered a broken collarbone last season, and the particular play sparked the creation of new and questionable rules for sacking a quarterback. The pass-rusher is no longer allowed to bring his weight down on the quarterback. If he does do this, it results in a roughing the passer penalty on what should be a routine tackle. Quarterbacks deserve some protection, but the NFL needs to acknowledge that they are also football players who run the same risk as everyone else on the field.

Moving on. You might think the Packers supported this new rule, considering why it was made. I doubt that’s the case anymore. Green Bay picked off Kirk Cousins late in the fourth quarter, which should have sealed the win. But, Clay Matthews was flagged for bringing his weight down on Cousins — the correct call. Cousins took the Vikings down the field, scored a touchdown, and tied the game on a two point conversion. The score never changed after that and the game ended in a 29-29 tie.

Irony.

 

NFL Notes: Week 1

Football is back, and there was no shortage of excitement during Kickoff Week. We saw a few surprising victories, incredible comebacks and records broken. Here are some notes on the cool things to happen in Week 1 of the NFL season.

The Longest Game Ever

The Tennessee Titans and Miami Dolphins kicked off at 1:00 p.m. EST and did not finish until after 8:00. Two separate lightning delays totaled almost four hours, creating a total game time of 7 hours and eight minutes. The previous record was set in 2013 when the Bears and Ravens played a 5 hour and 16 minute marathon. Miami won the game 27-20.

Four Special Teams Touchdowns

Two of them came in the aforementioned longest game ever. Jakeem Grant ran a kickoff 102 yards for a touchdown and Darius Jennings responded with his own 94 yard TD return. The others came on punt returns. One came from Tyreek Hill against the Chargers and the other was from Andre Roberts during the Jets’ beatdown of the Lions on Monday Night Football.

The Saints lost to the Buccaneers

The Saints were supposed to be really good this season, and the Bucs were supposed to be awful. Ryan Fitzpatrick apparently had other plans as he led Tampa Bay to a 48-40 upset on the road. Now we face this question — Is Tampa bay better than we thought or was New Orleans just rusty and unprepared in its opener?

The Bills looked really bad

The Bills were not expected to have a great season, or even a good season, but their performance on Sunday might have given us a preview of an atrocious season ahead. They lost 47-3 to the not-that-good Ravens.

Even with that ghastly performance, the true problem might point to Sean McDermott. He traded one of the league’s better backups in AJ McCarron, signaling his confidence in top ten draft pick Josh Allen. Just kidding, he chose Nathan Peterman instead. We all know how that went before, and to no surprise, he was just as bad on Sunday.

Khalil Mack is scary

Before Jon Gruden could even coach a game for the Raiders, he shipped their best player of to the Bears. A sunburned Gruden said this week that Mack did not want to be in Oakland, which doesn’t seem entirely true. Gruden can think what he wants and call Spider 2Y Banana as much as his heart desires, but based on last night’s performance, he might regret not even talking with Mack before the season.

Anyyywayyy, Mack racked up a strip-sack and a pick six off of Deshone Kizer. He had one of the best defensive performances of the week on a limited snap count, which is pretty impressive. Unfortunately for Mack and the Bears …

Aaron Rodgers is just as scary

After having his knee stepped on, and being carted off the field nearly in tears, Aaron Rodgers returned to the field and led the Packers to a 24-23 win after they had trailed 20-0 in the third quarter. It was a game for the books, in terms of both performance and toughness.

 

 

 

Ryan Sharp’s NFL Picks

Jacob Rosenfarb’s full NFL predictions and analysis will be rolled out later today. In the meantime, I thought I’d share my picks and some notes. You can also listen to all of this on Two Kids in a Trenchcoat.

AFC North

  1. Steelers 10-6
  2. Browns 6-10
  3. Ravens 5-11
  4. Bengals 3-13

This isn’t going to be a great year for Big Ben, but Le’veon Bell and Antonio Brown have enough talent to carry the Steelers to a division title. In part because everyone else is so bad. Six wins is a success for the Browns, but expect to be underwhelmed by Baltimore and Cincinnati. This might actually be it for Marvin Lewis.

AFC South

  1. Jaguars 12-4
  2. Texans 11-5
  3. Titans 10-6
  4. Colts 8-8

There are three capable playoff teams in this division. All of them will make the playoffs. The Jacksonville defense is strong enough to take a good chunk of pressure off of Blake Bortles, who has lost nine fewer playoff games than Tom Brady. Derrick Henry should gain full control of the Titans backfield, and that will benefit them. Most intriguing is the potential for a full season of Deshaun Watson, who showed signs of elite play before tearing his ACL last season.

AFC East

  1. Patriots 12-4
  2. Jets 7-9
  3. Bills 6-10
  4. Dolphins 5-11

Two of the starting quarterbacks in the AFC are rookies. One is mediocre, —  serviceable at best. The last is Tom Brady. Any questions?

Seriously though, the Patriots should run away with the East as usual, barring a catastrophe. The Jets and Bills seem ready to commit to 2018 as a year of development. The Dolphins say they can compete, but let’s be real.

AFC West

  1. Chargers 10-6
  2. Chiefs 9-7
  3. Broncos 7-9
  4. Raiders 4-12

Patrick Mahomes is going to be good, but he isn’t there yet. That, combined with a difficult schedule, will contribute to the Chiefs missing out on the playoffs in 2018. Los Angeles has comparable talent and a more established quarterback in Philip Rivers.

Even with the addition of Case Keenum, the Broncos have too many question marks to make a run this year. Jon Gruden in Oakland is going to be a disaster.

NFC North

  1. Vikings 11-5
  2. Packers 10-6
  3. Bears 8-8
  4. Lions 3-13

Similar to 2014, it’ll take Aaron Rodgers and the Packers a while to get hot. In that time, the Vikings will pull ahead just enough that they hold on to the division at the end of the season. Chicago should improve in year two of the Mitchell Trubisky era, and Detroit will do the opposite.

NFC South

  1. Saints 12-4
  2. Panthers 9-7
  3. Falcons 9-7
  4. Buccaneers 3-13

People forget that Drew Brees is a future Hall-of-Famer. He shows that this year. Combined with a strong defense and good running attack, the Saints should have no problem winning the South. Expect a step back from Cam Newton and Matt Ryan, but nothing drastic. Even once Jameis Winston returns from from suspension, the Buccaneers are looking at a lost season.

NFC East

  1. Eagles 13-3
  2. Giants 8-8
  3. Redskins 7-9
  4. Cowboys 5-11

I heard someone say the Eagles would only win eight games this year. That person was wrong. The Giants however, will feature a healthy OBJ and rookie Saquon Barkley. Eight wins seems realistic for them, but not the Eagles.

At this point, I think Jay Gruden might be the problem for Washington. I’m excited for Alex Smith, though. Things seem a little chaotic in Dallas right now, and that contributes to a poor season for the Cowboys.

NFC West

  1. Rams 12-4
  2. 49ers 10-6
  3. Seahawks 8-8
  4. Cardinals 7-9

Sorry everyone, but Jimmy G has to lose at some point. But that doesn’t equate to a bad season, and the Niners make a run at the wild card spot. Catching the Rams is too hard to do.

Russell Wilson is very good, but the rest of the Seahawks are not. Expect to see a continuing downward trend in Seattle. The Cardinals still have a lot of work to do.

AFC Playoffs

  1. Patriots
  2. Jaguars
  3. Steelers
  4. Chargers
  5. Texans
  6. Titans

Wild Card

Texans (5) over Chargers (4)

Steelers (3) over Titans (6)

Divisional

Patriots (1) over Texans (5)

Jaguars (2) over Steelers (3)

Championship

Patriots (1) over Jaguars (2)

NFC Playoffs

  1. Eagles
  2. Rams
  3. Saints
  4. Vikings
  5. Packers
  6. 49ers

Wild Card

Packers (5) over Vikings (4)

Saints (3) over 49ers (6)

Divisional

Packers (5) over Eagles (1)

Rams (2) over Saints (3)

Championship

Rams (2) over Packers (5)

Super Bowl LIII

Patriots over Rams

Awards

MVP: Jared Goff

Offensive Player of the Year: Deshaun Watson

Defensive Player of the Year: Ndamukong Suh

Offensive Rookie of the Year: Saquon Barkley

Defensive Rookie of the Year: Derwin James

Coach of the Year: Bill Obrien

Comeback Player of the Year: Odell Beckham Jr.

MLB All Star teams, but determined by fWAR

I’m not saying I don’t like fan voting, I’m just saying it allows undeserving players to play in the All Star Game. Fan voting is how we ended up with a .222-hitting Jason Varitek in 2008, or Cal Ripken starting over Alex Rodriguez and/or Troy Glaus in 2001.

If the game were to truly showcase the best players in baseball, fWAR is a slightly better way of doing things.

For those of you who hate, or don’t know about advanced metrics, fWAR (Wins Above Replacement) is a measurement used by FanGraphs to approximately how many wins a player is worth — seeing if team more or less likely to win with or without a specific player in a game.

I totally copy-pasted that from my article on Chris Davis. Hopefully nobody sues me for plagiarizing myself. That’s actually a thing. It happened to John Fogerty.

Anyway, here are the current starting lineups for the 2018 All Star Game.

National League

Position Player fWAR
1B Freddie Freeman 3.4
2B Ozzie Albies 2.9
3B Nolan Arenado 3.4
SS Brandon Crawford 2.8
OF Nick Markakis 2.3
OF Matt Kemp 1.7
OF Bryce Harper 1.3
C Buster Posey 1.7

American League

Position Player fWAR
1B José Abreu 0.6
2B Jose Altuve 3.7
3B Jose Ramírez 5.5
SS Manny Machado 2.9
OF Mookie Betts 5
OF Mike Trout 6.3
OF Aaron Judge 4.2
C Wilson Ramos 1.2
DH JD Martinez 3

Now here’s what the teams should look like.

National League

Position Player fWAR Difference
1B Freddie Freeman 3.4 0
2B Genett/Albies/Baez 2.9 0
3B Nolan Arenado 3.4 0
SS Trea Turner 2.9 0.1
OF Lorenzo Cain 3.4 1.1
OF Brandon Nimmo 2.5 0.8
OF Kyle Schwarber 2.4 1.4
C JT Realmuto 3.2 1.5

American League

Position Player fWAR Difference
1B Matt Olson 1.6 1
2B Jose Altuve 3.7 0
3B Jose Ramírez 5.5 0
SS Francisco Lindor 4.8 1.9
OF Mookie Betts 5 0
OF Mike Trout 6.3 0
OF Aaron Judge 4.2 0
C Max Stassi 1.3 0.1
DH JD Martinez 3 0

The American League is more accurate, as 6 of the 9 (nice) voted players also have the top fWAR at their positions. That’s actually not too terrible. The NL could use some work though. Six of those 9 (nice) do NOT lead their position in fWAR.

Honestly, I don’t see a need to change too much. I just thought this would be a fun comparison.

Chris Davis isn’t good, and that’s bad

Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis is having an historically bad year.

In a time when hyperbole is everywhere, this unfortunately is not.

Davis is literally on pace to have the worst season by any player ever.

For those of you who hate, or don’t know about advanced metrics, fWAR (Wins Above Replacement) is a measurement used by FanGraphs to approximately how many wins a player is worth — seeing if team more or less likely to win with or without a specific player in a game.

Davis’s fWAR is currently -1.8. The next worst is -1.2, held by Cleveland Indians pitcher Josh Tomlin. Ian Desmond is the second-worst first baseman with an fWAR -0.9.

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Davis is currently slashing .153/.232/.233. We’re used to seeing a low average and a lot of strikeouts by Davis, but his home run and RBI totals made up for that.

So far in 2018, the two-time former league leader has four homers. That puts him on pace for around 15 this season. The 30 combined homers he’s hit since the start of the 2017 season hasn’t yet matched his 2016 total of 38.

 

There was hope for Davis entering this season. He said he’d been working extra hard to reduce strikeouts and increase contact in the offseason. Apparently, that extra work didn’t happen, according to Hall of Fame pitcher and MASN analyst Jim Palmer, who laid into Davis last month.

If the Orioles’ hitting coach says it didn’t happen, it probably didn’t.

If Davis did try to adjust after Palmer’s comments, it hasn’t created results.

Perhaps the worst part of this situation, is the the Orioles are paying Davis $23M per year through 2022 to drastically underperform. On top of that — he’s still regularly in the lineup, playing in 56 of Baltimore’s 64 games so far.

The contract makes him un-tradable, but it’s not like any team wants him at this point.

It has to be tough on a front office to bench or demote a guy being paid that much. It’s probably even tougher to bench a guy who propelled your offense for four years.

But the Red Sox were in a similar situation with Pablo Sandoval a few years back. They sucked it up and designated him for assignment. It was the right thing to do.

Some time in AAA might not hurt either.

Baltimore’s front office is just as flawed as Davis, though. It’s afraid to commit to a rebuild, or even give younger guys some time in the big leagues.

Personally, I feel bad for Davis. It seems like his struggles started by no fault of his own, but then he did nothing to fix anything, so I don’t feel too bad. It would be great if he turns things around.

Of course, my opinion means nothing, so it looks like the Orioles are just gonna keep losing with no plan on how to win. Love it.

Landing spots for Dez Bryant

The Dallas Cowboys released wide receiver Dez Bryant on April 13, and he remains unsigned for variety of reasons, some known and some not. It’s highly unlikely that Bryant is jobless come kickoff (91 days), but who will employ him?

Let’s take a look.

Green Bay Packers

Jordy Nelson left for Oakland in free agency, leaving a huge hole in the Packers’ receiving corps. However, Green Bay drafted three wideouts, but a veteran presence might be good to have.

Bryant lacks the leadership skills the Packers are looking for, plus Randall Cobb is still around. They also brought in pass-catching tight end Jimmy Graham. Bryant’s role in Green Bay could be minimal, which we all know he would dislike.

Los Angeles Rams

This was my prediction in April. I still like it.

The Rams have definitely been offseason winners, especially on defense with the additions of Ndamukong Suh, Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib.

They did however, lose Sammy Watkins, taking away from an already thin group of receivers. Bryant can easily fill in for Watkins, and Los Angeles has shown no hesitation in acquiring guys with big personalities.

New England Patriots

As of today, this one makes the most sense.

Danny Amendola walked and Julian Edelman was just handed a four game suspension for PED use.

The Patriots have a history of taking players we forgot about and turning them into Pro-Bowlers. We haven’t exactly forgotten about Bryant, but you get the idea.

Dallas Cowboys (not really)

I don’t know why this idea is floating around, but it is. If this happens, I’ll eat Campbell’s tomato soup straight out of the can.

The AFC South might be competitive this year

The headline is kind of misleading. The AFC South was competitive last year, too.

The Jacksonville Jaguars won the division with a 10-6 record, and made a run to the AFC Championship game. A questionable down by contact call prevented them from putting the game out of reach and a trip to the Super Bowl. Instead, Tom Brady took the Patriots on a game winning drive like we all expected.

Those same Patriots beat the Tennessee Titans a week before that in the AFC Divisional round. Tennessee finished the 2017 campaign with a 9-7 record, good for a Wild Card spot. They stunned the Chiefs by coming back from a 21-3 halftime deficit on the road.

Until Deshaun Watson‘s season-ending ACL injury before Week 9, the Houston Texans were also in the mix. They were 3-4, so it would have been difficult, but Watson had started to figure it out and was a frontrunner for Rookie of the Year. He threw for 1,699 yards and 19 touchdowns in 7 weeks as the starter, plus the second half of the opening game.

I’m really looking forward to his return. He has the potential to have a Carson Wentz-like sophomore season.

The Indianapolis Colts were bad, but that’s a good place to start looking ahead to 2018.

Andrew Luck turns 29 during the season, which isn’t that old for a quarterback. He’s had an entire season to rest his shoulder, and took a nice trip to Europe for treatment. That wasn’t even the weirdest shoulder injury/recovery of 2017. Looking at you, Sixers.

Aside from the nagging injury, Luck’s biggest problem was getting sacked, often by no fault of his own. He was dropped in the backfield 41 times in 2016, and the Colts allowed a league high 56 sacks in 2017.

To address this, they added the best offensive lineman in the draft, Quenton Nelson. He should make an immediate impact on the Colts’ line. I’d compare him to Jake Long before his injury problems. They also took Braden Smith from Auburn in the second round.

To take some of the pressure off of Luck (all kinds of pressure), the Colts drafted running back Nyheim Hines from NC State. Frank Gore was never bad for Indy, but he probably shouldn’t have been the RB1. Hines and fellow rookie Jordan Wilkins from Ole Miss should improve the run game significantly.

A healthy Andrew Luck is a Top 10 quarterback, and a good quarterback puts any team in the playoff conversation.

For the past few years, intra-division games have played an important role in deciding the AFC South champion, but it’s never been between all four teams. That could change this year.

Things are finally on track for Tennessee and Jacksonville, with Houston not far behind. Indianapolis isn’t quite there, but improved its roster in the offseason.

8-8 can win a division, and sometimes a wild card spot if the rest of the conference is bad enough. The entire AFC south is capable of winning at least 7 games, which in theory, puts everyone in the playoff hunt. That probably won’t happen, but hey, it’s fun to think about.

Draft Grades: NFC East

Rookie camps have started so we should probably finish telling you how each team drafted. Here is the NFC East:

Dallas Cowboys: C 

Round 1, Pick 19: Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise St. Dc7yJUkUwAA7v_k.jpg

Round 2: Connor Williams, G, Texas

Round 3: Michael Gallup, WR, Colorado St.

Round 4: Dorance Armstrong Jr., DE, Kansas

Round 4: Dalton Schultz, TE, Stanford

Round 5: Mike White, QB, Western Kentucky

Round 6: Chris Covington, LB, Indiana

Round 6: Cedrick Wilson, WR, Boise State

Round 7: Bo Scarbrough, RB, Alabama

Vander Esch and Williams are both good players, but Dallas waited until the third round to address its biggest need. At one point I mocked Gallup in the first, so there’s some value in getting him in the third. But that leaves the question of how stacked could they have been if they took another receiver when they should have?

New York Giants: A

Round 1, Pick 2: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn St. DbwBw5CX0AMs_Ha.jpg

Round 2: Will Hernandez, G, UTEP

Round 3: Lorenzo Carter, LB, Georgia

Round 3: B.J. Hill, DT, NC State

Round 4: Kyle Lauletta, QB, Richmond

Round 5: RJ McIntosh, DT, Miami

Despite only having six picks, the Giants nailed this Draft. Barkley finally provides a steady running back. He’ll be running behind second round steal Hernandez, who also fills a big need. They could have taken Bradley Chubb at No. 2, but still found potential JPP replacements in the later rounds. Charlie Casserly of the NFL Network said Lauletta was the future franchise QB. I’m not too sure about that, but he’ll certainly make a decent backup.

Philadelphia Eagles: C+

Round 2: Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota St.

Db566sGX4AAzVk5.jpg

Round 4: Avonte Maddox, CB, Pittsburgh

Round 4: Josh Sweat, DE, Florida State

Round 6: Matt Pryor, G, TCU

Round 7: Jordan Mailata, South Sydney Rabbitohs Rugby Club

Goedert bumps the Eagles up half of a letter grade because he 1) is good 2) creates a threat to defenses as Philly works in a two tight end set. The rest of their draft wasn’t great, but it didn’t have to be. The Eagles were (obviously) good already. I’m not too sure about drafting Mailata, who has never played a down of football, but it’ll be cool if he translates.

Washington Redskins: C-

Round 1, Pick 13: Da’Ron Payne, LB, Alabama

Round 2: Derrius Guice, RB, LSU

Round 3: Geron Christian, OT, Louisville
Dc_yP8sUwAEB9_u.jpg

Round 4: Troy Apke, S, Penn State

Round 5: Tim Settle, DT, Virginia Tech

Round 6: Shaun Dion Hamilton, LB, Alabama

Round 7: Greg Stroman, CB Virginia Tech

Round 7: Trey Quinn, WR, SMU

Washington’s best pick in this Draft was Guice in the second. There might be some character concerns, but he has great football value. Payne seems like an emergency pick after they lost out on Via Vea.