In case you've been living under a rock the Redskins play the AFC North this year! The AFC North is one of the best divisions of football. It consistently produces contenders for the AFC Championship between the Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Cincinnati Bengals. In this post I'll be reviewing each team's draft haul and explaining how it could affect the Redskins in 2016.
1st Round (#25) Artie Burns, CB, Miami
2nd Round (#58) Sean Davis, CB/S, Maryland
3rd Round (#89) Javon Hargrave, DT, South Carolina State
4th Round (#123) Jerald Hawkins, OL, LSU
6th Round (#220) Travis Feeney, OLB, Washington
7th Round (#229) Demarcus Ayers, WR, Houston
7th Round (#246) Tyler Matakevich, ILB, Temple
The Steelers are always in the conversation for winning their division. Over the past few years the Steelers have been trying to infuse youth all over their defense and they did that again this year with their first few picks. Grabbing Artie Burns sets them up at corner for the future and Burns should become a #1 guy in a few years. The Steelers then added some versatility in Sean Davis who can play either corner or safety from them. Then the Steelers added another big but athletic big boy in Javon Hargrave. All three of these picks should compete immediately and it could make a Redskins win in week 1 a little harder and set up the Steelers defense for years to come.
I trust Kirk Cousins to pick up where he left off and gash the seam with Reed and take what the defense gives him. Though I think Burns and Davis are very talented players and have the potential to be very good I see Kirk Cousins and the Redskin receivers winning this battle.
Javon Hargrave could be a factor week 1. He may not start immediately but I expect him to part of the Steelers DT rotation and to create pressure up the middle. He is good as working the A gap and could give our center and guards a little trouble.
1st Round (#15) Corey Coleman, WR, Baylor
2nd Round (#32) Emmanuel Ogbah, EDGE, Oklahoma State
3rd Round (#65) Carl Nassib, DE, Penn State
3rd Round (#76) Shon Coleman, OT, Auburn
3rd Round (#93) Cody Kessler, QB, USC
4th Round (#99) Joe Schobert, LB, Wisconsin
4th Round (#114) Ricardo Louis, WR, Auburn
4th Round (#129) Derrick Kindred, FS, TCU
4th Round (#138) Seth DeValve, WR, Princeton
5th Round (#154) Jordan Payton, WR, UCLA
5th Round (#168) Spencer Drango, OL, Baylor
5th Round (#172) Rashard Higgins, WR, Colorado State
5th Round (#173) Trey Caldwell, CB, Lousiana Monroe
7th Round (#250) Scooby Wright III, ILB, Arizona
The Browns certainly won the competition for most draft picks but unfortunately for them there are a few clear misses here. Their analytics guy certainly had his hand in this draft as the Browns first few selections where players who led the FCS is different statistical categories. It's clear that the Browns look to build around Robert Griffin III. They drafted 5 wide receivers and most likely look to move on from older vets on the roster (including Josh Gordon). Corey Coleman should be penciled in as the #1 guy and the Browns hope that Griffin and Coleman can get on the same page quickly. The Browns added significant size to the position as well selecting Ricardo Louis, and Jordan Payton.
The Browns also looked to add pass rushers. They drafted Emmanuel Ogbah which I consider a major miss. I outlined my frustrations with Ogbah in the draft profile I wrote on him. I don't consider him or Carl Nassib to be a factor against the Redskins.
The Browns did add some players I like in Joe Schobert, Derrick Kindred, and Rashard Higgins but it seems clear to me that outside of the weapons for RG3 the Browns draft was about the future of the team and hoping their picks pan out rather than their guys contributing right away.
I think the Redskins secondary should remain diligent with all the WR talent but I think our CBs will be able to handle them while our pass rush tries to get to Griffin.
The Browns got quantity but not a lot of quality.
1st Round (#6) Ronnie Stanley, OT, Notre Dame
2nd Round (#42) Kamalei Correa, OLB, Boise State
3rd Round (#70) Bronson Kaufusi, EDGE, BYU
4th Round (#104) Tavon Young, CB, Temple
4th Round (#107) Chris Moore, WR, Cincinnati
4th Round (#130) Alex Lewis, OT, Nebraska
4th Round (#132) Willie Henry, DT, Michigan
4th Round (#134) Kenneth Dixon, RB, Lousiana Tech
5th Round (#146) Matt Judon, DE, Grand Valley State
6th Round (#182) Keenan Reynolds, RB/WR, Navy
6th Round (#209) Maurice Canady, CB, Virginia
The Ravens, as usual, had a very good draft. Even in passing up the best OT in the draft in Laremy Tunsil the Ravens still got a potential franchise LT in Ronnie Stanley. Stanley most likely won't be an all pro protecting Joe Flacco in his first year but he's going to shine in some moments this year. Kamalei Correa was on my hate list, I just can't see him producing off the edge on a consistent basis. Even in the 2nd round I think it was a little bit of a reach there with other rushers left on the board. An edge rusher I do like like that the Ravens picked up was Bronson Kaufusi out of BYU. Kaufusi is far from a finished product but he is an all effort player with incredible length. He could create a problem off the edge for the Redskins purely from those standpoints.
Ozzie Newsome and Co. really shined in the 4th round when they got two really good players in Willie Henry and Kenneth Dixon and they continued the trend of adding real quality depth at multiple positions throughout the draft.
While the Ravens would be a tough matchup without all of their draft picks the depth they were able to and at nearly every position is just plain impressive. Junior Gallette / Preston Smith vs. Ronnie Stanley will be the matchup to watch when the Redskins play the Ravens.
1st Round (#24) William Jackson III, CB, Houston
2nd Round (#55) Tyler Boyd, WR, Pittsburgh
3rd Round (#87) Nick Vigil, ILB, Utah State
4th Round (#122) Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor
5th Round (#161) Christian Westerman, OG, Arizona State
6th Round (#199) Cody Core, WR, Ole Miss
7th Round (#245) Clayton Fejedelem, S, Illinois
The Bengals may have had the most efficient draft on paper in this division. The Bengals needed to upgrade their secondary, and a second receiver outside of A.J. Green, add a SMART inside linebacker to their mix. They did all three in their first three picks. William Jackson III is likely to start at some point during the season as a couple of the Bengals corners are aging. Tyler Boyd is just a huge upgrade and a true #2 receiver to complement A.J. Green. While I could go into how talented Nick Vigil is the real win for the Bengals here is that Vigil is unlikely to deliver a helmet to helmet hit in the 4th quarter of a playoff game.
The Bengals got real value when Andrew Billings fell to them in the 4th round. Though Billings is considered to be a two down DT he should really add some skill and talent to an already talented from 4 for the Bengals.
The Bengals continued adding a quality player in the 5th round when they selected OG Christian Westerman who I compared to their own Kevin Zeitler. Westerman should be challenging for a starting role when one of the Bengals OG's contracts is up.
Cody Core didn't get much attention at Ole Miss compared to his teammate Laquon Treadwell but he is a good receiver with size and speed that can go up and get it and stretch the field.
In the 7th the Bengals added one of my favorite ultra productive safeties in the draft: Clayton Fejedelem.
Like the Ravens, playing the Bengals would have been a difficult task already, add the fact the game is in London it becomes Harder. I think the Bengals offense is a formidable matchup against the Redskins secondary even with the addition of Josh Norman. The Bengals consistently have one of the best defenses in the league and made it better with Jackson III, Vigil, Billings, and Fejedelem.
I chalked the Bengals game up as a loss and that doesn't change here.