As the first round of the NFL Draft came to a close, many teams and fans were elated with their draft picks. The Bucs remained patient and still got their number one choice in O.J. Howard, the Jaguars found their running back for the future in Leonard Fournette, and the Dolphins added more depth to their pass rush in drafting Charles Harris.
With rounds two and three commencing Friday night, here are a few things to watch for:
One of the first players expected to be taken off of the draft board is Dalvin Cook. Cook slid all the way out of the first round after being projected to go in the top 20 picks. With Green Bay holding the first pick of the second round and Seattle right behind them, Cook may find himself hearing his name called very early into the night or he will continue to fall down the board.
Another player whose stock has fallen is former Florida Gators DT Caleb Brantley. Since a criminal complaint was filed against Brantley on April 13, many teams have lost interest and put a red flag on him. However, there are still a few that seem to be interested in Brantley, two of those being Green Bay and Cleveland. It will be interesting to watch how far he falls on Friday Night.
Multiple players from Florida schools should hear their names called tonight. Teez Tabor and Quincy Wilson from UF, and Marlon Mack (above) from USF are three guys who are expecting to be taken on Friday night. Tabor and Wilson will enhance any secondary that they are drafted to. Mack can step into a backup/third down back position or become a starter and will make an impact wherever that may be.
Florida State has two players that are quite underrated in this draft. With all the hype being put on Cook falling into the second round, many people have forgotten about one of the guys who open the running lanes for him. OT Roderick Johnson is available and can be expected to be taken late in the second round or early in the third. Another athlete being overlooked is DE Demarcus Walker. Walker is a monster coming around the corner and plays with such intensity. He will upgrade any defensive line he joins.
The Jaguars were able to acquire the best running back in the draft in Fournette at pick #4. In the second round, the Jags have pick #35 and can go a few different ways with it. There is speculation that with Notre Dame QB Deshone Kizer still in the board, Jacksonville may bring him in to compete with current starter Blake Bortles. The Jags may also try to bolster their offensive line or try to add to their defensive line that struggled last year.
The Dolphins added Harris from Missouri to their strong defensive line last night. It will be interesting to see what Miami’s strategy is as they are picking near the end of both the second and third rounds. They have needs to fill on the offensive line at the guard and center position and wanting to build a line that will last more than just the next two years. On the defensive side of the ball, the Dolphins still haven’t filled the void at the cornerback position that Brent Grimes left last year when he signed with Tampa Bay. Look for Miami to be active on Friday night.