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2017 Draft Discussion Vol. 1

By: Dan Dankert

The draft is one of the most important events in the NFL each year. In order for teams to excel in drafting young talent it takes months and sometimes years of scouting and analyzing the talent in each draft. If you think general managers and NFL scouts haven’t been watching tape on Myles Garrett for years, you are absolutely wrong. At the end of April, we will see all of the top college players who declared for the draft find out where they will be starting their NFL career.

I think the first thing that needs to be addressed is how different of a draft this is. The last time that a quarterback wasn’t selected in the top 15 picks was in 2000, and we will likely see another instance of that this year. The fact is the top three quarterbacks in this draft aren’t instant impact players, there isn’t a single quarterback in this draft who should start for an NFL team next year. I am hard pressed to find arguments supporting drafting a quarterback in the first round that won’t start for you in their first year in the NFL.

As much as people want to hope that Mitchell Trubisky has this hidden talent that will make him a great player, he doesn’t have it. If you would have told a UNC fan mid-season that Trubisky was going to be a top 10 pick in this year’s draft they would have been either shocked, or they wouldn’t have believed you. He is undersized, and he hasn’t proven himself at all, even on the collegiate stage. I could see a team grabbing him late in the first, or early in the second, but he definitely isn’t a top player in this draft.

What this draft does have is plenty of top tier defensive line and defensive back talent. According to NFL.com 3 of the top 4 players in this year’s draft are defensive lineman. ESPN has a similar list, but for them defensive lineman carry 3 of the top 5 spots. This group is led by a player I am starting to like more and more, Myles Garrett. Coming into the draft I had my concerns about Garrett, I had been following Garrett since his high school days, he was once the number one overall high school recruit and I follow high school recruiting. He had raw athleticism and was an exceptional athlete similar to Jadeveon Clowney when he came out of high school. With an excellent combine, Garrett has shown himself as the undisputed best player in this draft.

Defensive end isn’t the only stacked position in this draft. The defensive backs this year are amazing. Both Malik Hooker and Jamal Adams have all-pro potential and even Jabril Peppers, if utilized correctly, could be a top notch player. Those are only the safeties in this draft. The cornerback position also has some decent depth. Marshon Lattimore is the top corner back in this draft though his stock might be falling. He had problems with his hamstring in college and had his hamstring flare up at the combine. With quality depth at the cornerback position in this draft it will be interesting to see how teams grade Lattimore.

As we get closer and closer to the draft I will be doing weekly draft profiles of the top prospects in this draft. My goal is to get you all one profile per week. The players I am currently thinking about doing a profile for: Myles Garrett, Leonard Fournette, Jamal Adams, Mitchell Trubisky, David Njoku.

If there is a player you want profiled comment below or email me at dm-dankert@wiu.edu.

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