It is hard to figure out where to begin. Multiple quarterbacks were taken (five to be exact). Several teams maneuvering up and down the board in the Buffalo Bills, Baltimore Ravens, and New Orleans Saints. Some players fell to teams while others reached for their guy. Some fans are happy while others are not. Let’s dive in with the surprises of the first round of the NFL Draft.
Baker Mayfield at One
Most mocks had Mayfield going to the New York Jets. Not until hours before the draft did the Mayfield to Cleveland rumor gain steam. Was he the best quarterback in the draft? Time will tell. All quarterbacks in this draft were polarizing. Let’s hope the Cleveland Browns grabbed the right one.
Bradley Chubb to Denver
The pick itself is not surprising. The surprise is that he fell to the Denver Broncos. At least two teams ahead of Denver could have used the consensus best defensive player in the draft. Instead, the rich get richer. Look out quarterbacks in the AFC West.
Kolton Miller and Martavis Bryant to Oakland
Much to the anger and dismay of their fans, especially after trading back, the Oakland Raiders decided to go with one of the best offensive tackles in the draft. The tackles in this class are not world beaters so it will be interesting to see how Miller plans out. However, the questionable move, especially with big names like Tremaine Edmunds and Derwin James on the board, was salvaged as the Raiders snagged Bryant from the Pittsburgh Steelers for a third rounder. He could help the Raiders as a vertical threat.
Leighton Vander Esch to Dallas
You’d be hard pressed to find a mock that did not see Calvin Ridley going to the Dallas Cowboys. Yet, they surprise us all by taking Vander Esch. Especially since Jaylon Smith is still on the roster. Color me surprised.
Calvin Ridley sliding to Atlanta
The first surprise was that he didn’t go to Dallas. The second surprise? He wasn’t the first wide receiver off the board, shoutout to D.J. Moore. However, Ridley should be ecstatic. In the Atlanta Falcons, he has the potential to develop into the second option behind that Julio Jones guy who also has an Alabama connection. This could not have worked out better for him.
Sony Michel and Rashaad Penny Going Round One
It seemed like a week ago that taking a running back in the first round was taboo unless it was Saquon Barkley. It was definitely a week ago that only he was worth a first round selection. In addition, it was definitely a week ago Derrius Guice was listed as the consensus number two back. It is crazy how things changed as both Michel and Penny have upside. Both land in spots (Michel to the New England Patriots while Penny went to the Seattle Seahawks) where they were luxury picks. It was all good just a week ago in the world of the NFL. Now running backs are a hot commodity.
Lamar Jackson to Baltimore
Wow. Not many mock drafts, if any at all, had Jackson going to the Baltimore Ravens let alone nearly falling out of the first round. They traded up to 32 in Ozzie Newsome‘s last draft running the war room. He’s definitely going out with a bang. It’s early, but teams could regret letting Jackson fall this far.