2019 NFL Draft: Live Recap and Reaction

The 2019 NFL Draft has a lot of question marks around it. The first overall pick was highly speculated about, with debate raging over whether the Arizona Cardinals would select Quarterback Kyler Murray, or stick with Rosen and take someone else, or even trade down. Beyond Murray, even the next few picks were uncertain, with Nick Bosa, Josh Allen, and Quinnen Williams all mentioned as possible second overall picks. The QB prospects were debated as well, and there was no clarity which one would be taken second, third, or even fourth, or how many would go in round one.

There are also several teams feeling the effects of their 2018 Draft and recent offseason. Five teams (New Orleans Saints, Cleveland Browns, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs) have no picks in the first round due to trades last year or throughout free agency. The Seattle Seahawks, Green Bay Packers and New York Giants have two first round picks (the latter with 12 total – tied for most with New England Patriots) and the Oakland Raiders had three. It was not to stay that way, as the Seahawks, Falcons, Eagles, Washington and Steelers all made moves throughout round one to shake up the balance of the draft.

As the draft unfolds, you can follow all the picks and what they mean for the team involved on Unfiltered Access live.

#1 Arizona Cardinals: Kyler Murray, QB (Oklahoma)

Confirming many people’s beliefs, the Cardinals took Murray first overall, signalling the fate of Josh Rosen. New Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury gets the QB he wanted all along, and the Cardinals are retooling the Offense around him. His athletic ability, accuracy and movement make him a dynamic playmaker that opens up a range of options for Kingsbury’s system. Paired with Running Back David Johnson, teams will need to stack the box against Arizona, opening up space downfield.

#2 San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, DE (Ohio State)

Nick Bosa missed most of his final college season after an injury, but it made no difference to his draft stock. The best pass-rusher in this year’s draft class was still a top pick and makes the 49ers DL one of the best in the league.  With a great combination of size, strength, football IQ and an ability to penetrate the pocket, San Francisco found a disruptive presence on the edge to complement the likes of Dee Ford, Solomon Thomas, and DeForest Buckner on the defensive front.

#3 New York Jets: Quinnen Williams, DT (Alabama)

Quinnen Williams was largely considered to be the best player in the draft from an overall talent standpoint. He’s a versatile Defensive Lineman who can play in both odd and even fronts. He collapses the pocket and closes quickly on the ball carrier. Paired with Leonard Williams on the Jets’ DL, Quinnen Williams figures to have an instant impact in the AFC East and gives Gang Green a tone setter up front.

#4 Oakland Raiders: Clelin Ferrell, DE (Clemson)

Ferrell has good burst and speed coming off the edge, and uses it well to pursue the ball carrier. The Raiders were in desperate need for pressure off the edge, and while he won’t do it on his own, Ferrell will enhance the production of teammates like last year’s rookie DT Maurice Hurst. The Raiders are rebuilding the Defense from the front, and Ferrell gives them some versatility in how they operate – he showed talent in pass coverage, particularly in the flat against receiving backs. Mayock’s first pick as GM of the Raiders may be a surprise to some, but he’s a solid player, even if he was taken slightly earlier than many foresaw.

#5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Devin White, LB (LSU)

The Buccaneers needed to solidify the middle of their Defense and got the best LB in the draft. White is an instinctive player who can blitz, play coverage, and makes great reads. He will be their defensive QB for years to come, and in a division with strong offensive weapons, White can help Tampa Bay stay in the hunt for the NFC South title.

#6 New York Giants: Daniel Jones, QB (Duke)

The second QB selected in the first round, Jones has a strong arm with a decent amount of accuracy. He can move well and has good overall mobility, although he needs to develop his reads and progressions to avoid throwing into coverage. He has the luxury of sitting behind Eli Manning for at least one more season, and won’t be forced to play early. This is a good fit for Jones, and the Giants get a long-term plan at QB.

#7 Jacksonville Jaguars: Josh Allen, DE (Kentucky)

Although not a top five overall pick, Allen didn’t fall that far. The Jaguars took the best player available, and he will join a defensive unit that is littered with playmakers. Unlike some of the earlier picks, Allen won’t be the focus of the Defense from day one, and will be given time to develop his role. He can rush the passer, set the edge and has quick feet. He’s also able to drop back and play a OLB-type role as needed. The Jaguars will be able to unleash Allen on one side of the Defense, while Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue fire off from the other.

#8 Detroit Lions: TJ Hockenson, TE (Iowa)

Matthew Stafford desperately needed more weapons in the passing game, and the Lions took the best receiving target in the draft. Hockenson is a solid route runner with good hands, who fights for extra yards after contact. He can also block well and help out in the run game. His speed and jumping abilities make him the most dynamic TE in this year’s draft class, and the Lions get a day one starter who should feature heavily.

#9 Buffalo Bills: Ed Oliver, DT (Houston)

Oliver has a lot of NFL-starter traits already, and the Bills become tougher up front to suit Head Coach Sean McDermott’s system. He is an effective bull rusher and collapses the pocket regularly. He can play inside or on the edge, in both odd and even fronts. While he needs to refine his moves to shed blocks and handle double-teams, he shouldn’t see too many of those. Oliver joins an already stout DL in Buffalo, and he should give his counterparts Star Lotuleilei and Shaq Lawson more opportunities to make plays.

#10 Pittsburgh Steelers: Devin Bush, LB (Michigan)

The Steelers acquired the 10th overall pick from the Denver Broncos, and used it on LB Devin Bush. A typical Steelers-type player, Bush fills an immediate need at LB, and manages to prevent him from landing with their divisional rival, Cincinnati Bengals. Bush excels in pass coverage and has good speed, making him tough to account for on Offense. Bush is another instinctive and highly aware playmaker that will give the Steelers a good spy against the mobile QBs they face in the division in Lamar Jackson and Baker Mayfield.

#11 Cincinnati Bengals: Jonah Williams, OT (Alabama)

A talented Tackle, Williams solidifies the right side of the Bengals’ OL. He has good size and strength, with effective use of his upper body. While he needs to refine his footwork and avoid dropping back too much to plant his feet, he will be hard to beat and should keep QB Andy Dalton upright. Good in both the run and pass games, Williams will enable new Head Coach Zac Taylor to implement any scheme he likes.

#12 Green Bay Packers: Rashan Gary, DE (Michigan)

Gary’s production from a numbers standpoint, or lack thereof, caused concern among many prior to the draft. Yet he has skills that many others in the class don’t, and was used in a slightly more complex system than many others at the position. He can play inside or out, and he has a range of moves to draw upon in rushing the passer. Gary showed speed in using twists and stunts, and he is the type of player to impact plays regularly, even if his sack numbers don’t match up.

#13 Miami Dolphins: Christian Wilkins, DT (Clemson)

While there was a lot of speculation that Miami would be targeting a QB early, rebuilding the defensive front makes a lot of sense too. Wilkins most likely projects as an interior lineman, but the Dolphins have a bigger need at DE, and Wilkins could start his career there. Wilkins had difficulty shedding blocks at times in college, and with a good first step and initial push, he should have success in closing down one side of the Dolphins’ opponents. The AFC East is starting to have more effective QBs, and Wilkins gives Miami a better chance to bring them down.

#14 Atlanta Falcons: Chris Lindstrom, OG (Boston College)

When the Falcons made the Super Bowl a few years ago it was with a strong OL. Lindstrom was one of the top OGs in the draft, and he uses his hands and feet well to keep players out of the pocket. He needs to sustain blocks more at times, but he has good mobility and he should help the Falcons run the ball better in 2019. Lindstrom fills an immediate need for Atlanta, and he should help their Offense fire more consistently.

#15 Washington Redskins: Dwayne Haskins, QB (Ohio State)

Washington were never leaving the Draft without a QB, and they didn’t need to trade up for Haskins to land him. He has good pocket presence and is an accurate passer with decent arm strength. While he can be a bit flat-footed, Haskins lacks overall mobility but has one of the league’s best OLs protecting him. He may have early struggles due to the lack of weapons in Washington, but that figures to be how they spend the next few days of the draft.

#16 Carolina Panthers: Brian Burns, DE (Florida State)

Burns has a lot of speed and burst from the snap, helping him step around OL with regularity. He needs to help himself by improving his ability to fight linemen one-on-one, and power rush the pocket. Burns’ athleticism and production are the big appealing factors to Carolina, who needed more help at DE, especially with the quality of Offenses in the NFC South. Burns can sometimes give up on plays and lack intensity, but overcoming this will make him a dominant pass rusher for years to come.

#17 New York Giants: Dexter Lawrence, DT (Clemson)

The Giants acquired this pick from the Cleveland Browns as part of the Odell Beckham Jr trade. With it, their second of the first round, they took the third Clemson DL of the first round. He’ll be asked to play NT which suits his abilities, as he possesses great strength and can handle double teams well. He has a few weapons to help him attack the pocket, including an underrated spin move and good bull rush if he gets a one-on-one matchup. While he may struggle to penetrate the pocket regularly, he will absorb a lot of blockers and make plays in the run game.

#18 Minnesota Vikings: Garrett Bradbury, C (NC State)

The Vikings desperately needed help along the interior of the OL, and Bradbury was considered the top Center in the draft by many. He has good lower body strength that makes him hard to push around, and he angles his body effectively to create running lanes. His hands lack speed in consistently forcing defenders back, but he uses them enough to hold his own. The Vikings have a lot of playmakers on Offense, and Bradbury should make it all come together better than it did in 2018.

#19 Tennessee Titans: Jeffrey Simmons, DT (Mississippi State)

Simmons was highly productive in college, and most likely would have gone higher if not for an ACL injury from February. Simmons is a dominant interior lineman who gets to the QB with a range of moves, pushing past the inside of the Center and Guards. He may struggle to adapt to a pure NT position in Tennessee, but he handled double teams frequently in college and should expect to see more. While he doesn’t instantly transform the Titans’ Defense, he is an upgrade for them up front. It is a quesitonable pick, however, when you look at their other needs and the players that went just after this one.

#20 Denver Broncos: Noah Fant, TE (Iowa)

The Broncos swapped first round picks with the Steelers, while also gaining their second round pick and a 2020 third round pick. The Broncos used it on Noah Fant which makes a lot of sense in multiple ways. Newly acquired QB Joe Flacco has always had a preference for throwing to TEs, and getting a good receiving TE makes the Offense better. The Broncos also needed more weapons regardless, and Fant provides that with his ability to fight for the ball in contested catches. He needs to improve his agility and twitch, but he is a solid blocker too. Fant will also take pressure off last year’s rookies Courtland Sutton and Philip Lindsay, who were the featured faces of the Offense.

#21 Green Bay Packers: Darnell Savage Jr, S (Maryland)

The Seattle Seahawks traded back several spots to acquire two fourth round picks, while the Packers moved up to land Darnell Savage. He climbed up draft boards in recent weeks because of his speed and ability to play over the top and in the box. He has strong open-field tackling ability and can be deployed in a number of ways. Savage has blitzing ability and also shows promise in man coverage. With last year’s rookie Jaire Alexander also in the secondary, Green Bay will have a much better pass Defense in 2019.

#22 Philadelphia Eagles: Andre Dillard, OT (Washington State)

The Eagles swapped picks with the Ravens to move up and reinforce the OL with Andre Dillard, possibly to jump ahead of the Texans who also needed a LT. He has great footwork and with his strength is hard to beat. He is effective in both the run and pass game, but may not start immediately. Dillard will be a long-term blind side protector for QB Carson Wentz, and could even get time at OG if needed.

#23 Houston Texans: Tytus Howard, OT (Alabama State)

Howard has the ideal size of an OT, and the Texans desperately needed to do a better job of protecting QB Deshaun Watson, after allowing the most sacks in the league in 2018. His hands need to be used a bit better to fight off defenders and hold them off, but his feet are quick and give him an advantage in most one-on-one matchups. Texans may have targeted a different OT, but they had a game plan ready regardless. They weren’t leaving the first round without shoring up their biggest need. Yet Howard is more comfortable at RT, so Houston may not be done at LT, unless Matt Kalil is going to play there.

#24 Oakland Raiders: Josh Jacobs, RB (Alabama)

This is the second of three picks the Raiders have in round one, and was acquired from the Chicago Bears in the Khalil Mack trade. The Raiders used it on Josh Jacobs to fill a major need on Offense, as they struggled to run the ball in 2018 and lost Marshawn Lynch in the offseason. Jacobs is a dynamic RB who is strong and hits the hole with speed, gaining a lot of yards after contact. He can also play all three downs if needed, operating as a receiver and a blocker on passing downs. If the RB position was valued higher in the NFL, Jacobs would have gone much earlier. Not a bad return on investment for Khalil Mack.

#25 Baltimore Ravens: Marquise Brown, WR (Oklahoma)

The Ravens acquired additional picks (4th and 6th rounders) from the Eagles by moving back three spots in the first round. They selected Marquise “Hollywood” Brown with their first rounder, filling a huge need at WR. He was productive throughout his college career, contributing a large portion of his team’s receptions and yards in multiple seasons. His speed and yards after catch will suit the Ravens’ Offense led by Lamar Jackson, where he won’t need to be a deep threat, and instead will need his route running skills.

#26 Washington Redskins: Montez Sweat, DE/LB (Mississippi State)

Washington drafted Montez Sweat after trading back into the first round with the Indianapolis Colts. Sweat is a rangy edge rusher who closes well on the ball carrier with good speed. He has an arsenal of moves to beat OL and can power his way through if needed. He brings down both QBs and RBs regularly, and in Washington he joins a good group of guys coming off the edge, including Ryan Kerrigan and Jonathan Allen. Sweat’s medical concerns may have caused him to fall, but he was always going in round one. Washington got good value with this pick.

#27 Oakland Raiders: Johnathan Abram, S (Mississippi State)

The Raiders gained this pick in their trade of WR Amari Cooper to the Dallas Cowboys, and chose a box safety in Abram. He diagnoses the run well and uses his speed effectively when playing in coverage. His play recognition is strong too, and he is frequently in the right place to make a play on the ball. Abram can struggle to stick tight to WRs at times, but he won’t be asked to do that often in Head Coach Jon Gruden’s Tampa 2 system. Abram is a good safety net to have on the back end, while also making up for the LBs that Oakland lack at the line of scrimmage.

#28 Los Angeles Chargers: Jerry Tillery, DT (Notre Dame)

Tillery gives the Chargers the extra juice they need up front, and the Chargers DL is filled with playmakers now in Joey Bosa, Melvin Ingram, and now Tillery. He collapses the pocket with a range of moves, and shows good pursuit in getting after the ball carrier. Tillery will play as a NT, but can fit four-man fronts too and absorbs double-teams effectively, freeing up the edge rushers mentioned above. Tillery could have gone much higher, but the Chargers get good value late in the first round.

#29 Seattle Seahawks: LJ Collier, DE (TCU)

Through their trade of DE Frank Clark with the Kansas City Chiefs earlier this week, the Seahawks gained an additional pick in the first round. They used it on DE LJ Collier, a speedy player who will replace Frank Clark right away. Collier has good swim and spin moves, although he can lack power in pushing through OL. He sets the edge and penetrates the pocket regularly, and the Seahawks are developing another powerhouse Defense.

#30 New York Giants: Deandre Baker, CB (Georgia)

From their trade in the 2018 Draft with the New Orleans Saints, the Packers acquired an additional first round pick, which they then traded to the Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks then traded the pick to the Giants to supplement their low number of selections. The Giants filled an immediate need in their secondary with the first CB taken in the draft. Baker has good speed and reactions, and he fits both man and zone schemes. He lacks strength and won’t beat up on receivers at the line of scrimmage, but he is a solid player who should get early game time.

#31 Atlanta Falcons: Kaleb McGary, OT (Washington)

The Falcons made a statement in round one by selecting two OL, and are doing everything they can to give QB Matt Ryan more time to throw. McGary is good in the run game, but to make this pick worthwhile he needs to improve in pass protection. His hands aren’t tight and stiff enough, although he has shown good awareness in picking up pass rushers. Atlanta may have taken McGary a bit early, but if he is the guy they think, they once again have one of the better OLs in the league.

#32 New England Patriots: N’Keal Harry, WR (Arizona State)

The Patriots haven’t drafted a WR high in a while, and Harry was highly productive in college. He figures to be an outside threat that Tom Brady hasn’t had in a few seasons, and with the loss of Rob Gronkowski in the offseason as well, Harry could be productive early on in his career. He works well on the outside, but could be moved around, which the Patriots like to do. Harry is a consistent contributor to teams, and like all good Belichick players, has experience on Special Teams. Since they missed out on the top two TEs, the Patriots picked up one of the next best weapons in the draft.

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