Draft Day: NFL Teams To Make Big Decisions

nfl draft

By Nick Hession,
Sports Business Writer

The NFL will hold its next annual draft from April 27 to April 29 in Philadelphia, where college stars such as Texas A&M Defensive End Miles Garrett and Stanford Running Back Christian McCaffrey will wait and hope that they are drafted.

Philadelphia was the first city to hold an NFL Draft in 1938 and this year’s draft in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s iconic “Rocky Steps” will be the city’s first since 1961, according to Daryl Bell’s article for the Philadelphia Tribune’s website.

Many have their eyes on the Cleveland Browns, who have this year’s first pick. Most sources say they will use that pick on Garrett, but they may try to draft a quarterback, according to Thomas Lott in an article for SportingNews.com.

Cleveland has hosted 26 starting quarterbacks since 1999 and none were overly successful. Brian Hoyer is the only quarterback in that span with a winning record as a starter at 10-6 and the best touchdown-to-interception ratio belongs to Josh McCown who threw 14 touchdowns and six interceptions, according to Christina Ledra’s SportingNews.com article.

In light of these failures at quarterback, the Browns want to get a competent signal caller under center and their primary candidate for the job is North Carolina quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. This creates a tough decision for the Browns because there is no way to be sure they can draft both of their top prospects with this year’s first and twelfth picks, Lott said.

Football journalists from news outlets across the country have spent the last few weeks publishing and revising mock drafts in order to predict this year’s draft order. A group of CBS Sports analysts published their first round predictions with each team’s needs in mind.

The group agreed that the Browns would take Garret with their first pick. They also agreed that the Arizona Cardinals would take a quarterback and the Baltimore Ravens would take a wide receiver. Other consensuses came with their predictions that teams like the Dallas Cowboys, Atlanta Falcons and Pittsburgh Steelers definitely taking defensive players.

Draft Analyst Chad Reuter also put forth guesses as to how this year’s draft will unfold. He too predicted that the Browns would take Garrett with their pick. He also predicted that the San Francisco 49ers would steal Trubisky with the second overall pick.

Other big names expected to go in the first round, according to Reuter, are McCaffrey to the Carolina Panthers with the eighth overall pick, quarterback Patrick Mahomes to the Texans with the 25th pick and DeShaun Watson to the Kansas City Chiefs with the 27th pick, according to NFL.com.

The New York Jets are expected to draft a replacement for legendary cornerback Darelle Revis with the sixth overall pick. Reuter feels that they can fill the hole he left with Ohio State Cornerback Marshon Lattimore, according to NFL.com. The analysts at CBS Sports tend to disagree and say that the Jets will try to find a solid quarterback first, according to CBSSports.com.

The New York Giants also have a split consensus as to how they will use the draft’s 23rd pick. Reuter feels that they will draft Miami tight end David Njoku, according to NFL.com. One of CBS Sports’s analysts made a similar prediction, but their general consensus was that the Giants would try to either bolster their offensive line or try to find Eli Manning’s successor, according to CBSSports.com

The draft starts at 8 p.m. on April 27 and will be broadcasted on ESPN, ESPN2 and the NFL Network. The NFL will also stream the draft on its website. It is certainly an exciting time for football fans, as teams will make decisions that may shape their franchise for years to come.

A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 print edition.

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