Rather than an oh so familiar grade the rivals draft post I wanted to start a discussion about how our NFCE rivals got better (or didn’t) through the draft. A few takeaways from me:
I am not intimately familiar with any of the NFCE rivals rosters like I am the Redskins but I do think all three teams got better in one way or another.
Take the Eagles for example who had one of the best records in football and of course won a Super Bowl last year. They didn't have many outstanding needs but they did get another potential TE1 to pair with Zach Ertz to terrorize defenses up the seam and over the middle. Philly arguably grabbed the best TE in the draft with their second rounder and gave their QB yet another weapon. That’s the clear highlight in Philly as Maddox might be able to challenge for a slot role but that remains to be seen. The same feeling applies to Josh Sweat who could enter their pass rush rotation as a rookie. It appears the Eagles rounded out their draft by trying to bolster depth at the OT position - Jason Peters is coming off a major injury and he isn’t getting younger.
2nd - No. 49 - Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State
4th - No. 125 - Avonte Maddox, CB, Pittsburgh
4th - No. 130 - Josh Sweat, DE, Florida State
6th - No. 206 - Matt Pryor, OT, TCU
7th - No. 233 - Jordan Mailata, OT, South Sydney Rabbitohsys
It was rumored that Dallas was in love with LVE for weeks and that came to fruition on draft night. I really liked LVE as a prospect and I wish him no ill will but if a team was going to take a chance on a one year wonder LB whose tape was up and down last year I’d want it to be the Cowboys. It will be interesting to see how he works with Jaylon Smith and the rest of the defense. What seemed to be somewhat telegraphed was the Cowboys pick of Connor Williams. Williams can play inside or outside so it will be interesting to see where he plays in the already stacked Dallas OL. I really liked Michael Gallup and wrote earlier in the year that he has the potential to be a top WR2. Dallas missed out on the top WR tier earlier in the draft but they got a player who has a high ceiling in my opinion with Gallup. Dorance Armstrong is a really raw player I don’t expect him to be much of a contributor over the next couple of years. It was also learned that Jason Witten was going to retire on draft night - the Cowboys also missed out on the top TE prospects but got a decent one in Schultz. The curious pick was the selection of Mike White. I’m probably creating drama where there is none but I wonder if Prescott has the leeway of a true franchise QB or if White will be waiting in the wings at some point? The rest of Dallas’ picks just seemed like depth to me.
1st - Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State Broncos
2nd - Connor Williams, OL, Texas Longhorns
3rd - Michael Gallup, WR, Colorado State Rams
4th - Dorance Armstrong Jr., EDGE, Kansas Jayhawks
4th - Dalton Schultz, TE, Stanford Cardinal
5th - Mike White, QB, Western Kentucky Hilltoppers
6th - Chris Covington, LB, Indiana Hoosiers
6th - Cedrick Wilson, WR, Boise St. Broncos
7th - Bo Scarbrough, RB, Alabama Crimson Tide
We all knew this was coming. With Eli still functional there is no way the Giants should have passed on the best player in the draft and they didn’t. Barkley ought to give the Giants the versatility and balance they have been lacking for years in the running game. Not only did the Giants get their franchise RB they upgraded their OL in a big way with the selection of Hernandez who is a wall in pass protection and a mauler in the run game. Lorenzo Carter is a raw technician but his athletic traits are through the roof and he might be a terror in a year or two as a OLB in the Giants new 3-4 defense. B.J. Hill looks like a nice 3rd or 4th option after Snacks and Tomlinson. I was never as high on Lauletta as some were so I was ecstatic when he was picked by someone other than the Redskins. He should be a fine QB3 if they Giants decide to keep 3 on the roster. One of my favorite players in this draft from the U is now a Giant which makes me a bit sad. I like McIntosh more than Hill so that depth battle might be interesting to watch.
New York Giants
1st - Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
2nd - Will Hernandez, OG, UTEP
3rd - Lorenzo Carter, LB, Georgia
3rd - B.J. Hill, DT, N.C. State
4th - Kyle Lauletta, QB, Richmond
5th - R.J. McIntosh, DT, Miami
When I look at these picks for what they are paired with my understanding of the weaknesses of each NFCE team the Giants ‘won’ this one hands down. They got better in a lot of areas and might have salvaged their chances this year. What do you guys think about our division rivals drafts?
Which Redskins Rival Helped Their Team Most Using The Draft?
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Which Of The Top Selections Made By NFCE Rivals Will Have The Biggest Impact Year 1?
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Leighton Vander Esch