After months of speculation and trying to predict who would go first overall. We finally got our answer when the Houston Texans took defensive end, Jadeveon Clowney. A pick that didn’t really shock anyone. Not too long after that we saw offensive tackle Greg Robinson go to the Rams, another pick that surprised no one. Then we got our first “wow” moment, when the Jacksonville Jaguars passed up Khalil Mack and Sammy Watkins, the two best prospects left, to take quarterback, Blake Bortles. Will it be a pick that pays dividends for the Jaguars? Maybe, and I like the pick personally. But, Bortles was probably the last person Jags fans thought they would take at three. Can’t really call it a losing pick at this point, just one that makes you scratch your head and say, “where did that come from?”
Here are some couple winners and losers from the first round.
The team that was most active on day one, was also the biggest winner in my book, the Cleveland Browns. The Browns initially traded down from the fourth overall spot with the Buffalo Bills. In return getting the Bills 2015 first round pick as well as their 2015 fourth rounder. The Bills took receiver Sammy Watkins at four. Cleveland was involved the next trade too, when they ended up trading with the Minnesota Vikings to move up one spot from 9. Where they subsequently took cornerback, Justin Gilbert at eight, giving them another great corner to play alongside the already outstanding, Joe Haden. Only two picks later, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reported that the Browns attempted to trade again, this time with Tennessee, but were unable to reach a deal. The Browns traded up once more, from 26 to 22 with the Philadelphia Eagles and took quarterback Johnny Manziel. The Browns gave up their third-round pick, 83rd overall to do so.
The other big winner, a team that didn’t have to make any trades (this year) to get two first round picks, the St. Louis Rams. With their first pick, the second overall, they took one of the three best offensive tackles in the draft, Greg Robinson. Putting a rest to all of the rumors of the Rams taking Manziel at two after he worked out for them, this past weekend, just smoke and mirrors apparently.
The Rams next pick was on the other side of the ball, but still on the line, defensive tackle Aaron Donald. Giving them four first-round picks on their defensive-line. Donald had been moving up draft boards pretty rapidly, some analysts thought he could go as early as five to the Oakland Raiders and no later than 14. Donald was the first DT since Hall Of Famer Warren Sapp to take home the Bednarik, Lombardi, Naguurski and Outland awards.
Looking at the losers of the day one
The Tennessee Titans biggest need was and is still cornerback after they selected offensive tackle, Taylor Lewan with the 11th overall pick. Tennessee lost their best cornerback, Alterraun Verner in the offseason and actually signed a right tackle Michael Oher to play on the opposite side of their pro-bowl left tackle Michael Roos. It’s worth noting that they also signed an offensive lineman last year, when they selected guard Chance Warmack with the 10th overall pick in 2013. Lewan was definitely a luxury pick, one they can’t afford in my opinion, since they only have six picks, 5 now..
The other questionable pick I thought was receiver Kelvin Benjamin to the Carolina Panthers. Without a doubt they needed a receiver and badly. But, Benjamin? Marquise Lee was still available and Jordan Matthews would have been a better fit.
Benjamin isn’t the speedster they need, having ran a 4.61 40 yard dash at the combine, something you would think Carolina would want to replace after losing Steve Smith, Brandon LaFell and Ted Ginn Jr. Not to mention Benjamin dropped a lot of passes during his career at FSU.
In addition to losing all those receivers, the Panthers also lost one tackle to retirement and another to free agency, a need head coach Ron Rivera said they were going to address with their first pick and the Panthers don’t pick again until late in the second, at the 60th overall. All of the top tackles will more than likely be gone at that point, meaning if they wanted to get one, a trade would have to take place, which is possible, but they now only have six picks left.
Day two of the 2014 NFL draft will start at 3:30 PT on Friday. If you have any questions or comments please leave them down below, thanks!
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