2020 NFL DRAFT FINAL THOUGHTS

Quarterback: Joe Burrow has separated himself in the minds of the vast majority of the NFL scouting community as the head and shoulders above QB1…it does appear that Justin Herbert has emerged as the QB2 on most draft boards…Tua Tagovailoa was not as high on draft boards around the league as he was on draft twitter…the medical red flags have also cost Tua…if Tagovailoa does not get selected by Miami or Los Angeles, it is anyone’s guess where he lands…Jordan Love is the most volatile prospect in the class…Love could go Top 10, he could go RD2…ultimately I believe someone will deal up for him if he slides too far…it feels like Jalen Hurts is gaining momentum while Jacob Eason is losing some momentum…if a team falls in love with Hurts, they could possibly trade up into the 1st round in order to secure that coveted 5th-year option.

Runningback: I don’t expect any backs to be selected in the 1st round…that doesn’t mean this is an abysmal class, it simply means that there should be some nice return on investment at the RB position, primarily in the 2nd round…D’Andre Swift, J.K. Dobbins, Jonathan Taylor, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, and Cam Akers should be selected in the 2nd round…I believe the Florida franchises, Miami, Tampa Bay, and Jacksonville to prioritize taking a back in this range.

Wide Receiver: It certainly feels that most teams have a 1A/1B conversation as it relates to CeeDee Lamb and Jerry Jeudy…they are the two most NFL read WR prospects and I believe that is a factor in the analysis…that being said, don’t be surprised to see Henry Ruggs III crash the party, as he could be selected above either or both Lamb and/or Jeudy…the reason being–SPEED…I am hearing that speed is a crucial component for many teams who are placing a priority at the WR position…I would anticipate Ruggs, Jalen Reagor, Denzel Mims possibly coming off the board earlier than one would anticipate…don’t forget Justin Jefferson…speaking of crashing the party, it is becoming more and more difficult to find teams that have negative criticism for Jefferson…the NFL is very high and very confident on how Jefferson is going to translate to the NFL game–Jefferson will also come off the board quickly…overall, no position is going to be more fun to monitor throughout the entire draft than the WR position…many different types, I have never seen a position as deep as the 2020 NFL Draft WR class.

Tight Ends: I am hearing late whispers that the TE class is stealth and that a few prospects will come off the board earlier than we thought…I still struggle to see it, but I have heard Cole Kmet, in particular, will come off the board in the top 40 picks…I’ve been consistent throughout the draft process stating that I’m not a big fan of this class…if I were to target a prospect, I would feel decent with an Adam Trautman or Brycen Hopkins in the 3rd round.

Offensive Tackles: This is becoming one of the most fascinating draft classes…what has become crystal clear is that there is a ‘Big 4’ in this class–Jedrick Wills, Tristan Wirfs, Anthony Thomas, and Mekhi Becton…what also has become crystal clear is that NFL teams are all over the place with their orders…there is ZERO consensus here…some have Wirfs and Thomas ranked as offensive guards…some have dinged Wills for injuries and processing limitations…some have dinged Becton with his failing the drug test…this lack of clarity makes it very difficult for us to project these prospects in the right slots…why this class has gained in fascination is the likes of Josh Jones, Ezra Cleveland, Isaiah Wilson, and Austin Jackson have gained momentum throughout the process…admittedly, I have a 2nd round grade on all four prospects, but from what we are hearing, all four prospects have a strong likelihood of hearing their names called on the first day of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Offensive Guards/Centers: Cesar Ruiz continues to gain draft momentum as we get closer to the draft…the Eagles, Cowboys, Dolphins, and Chiefs are all known fans of Ruiz…it feels at this point that there are just too many teams who are in on him to escape the 1st round. I would personally prefer a Lloyd Cushenberry or Matt Hennessy on the 2nd day given the value of the position.

Edge Rushers: Not great Bob…Chase Young is an absolute smoke show and will be a game altering prospect…beyond Young, there are so many question marks…it does not appear that the NFL is as high on K’Lavon Chaisson as the scouting community…we all see the traits, but the lack of production is providing a great sense of pause…A.J. Epenesa may be a better fit in a 3-4 scheme…Yetur Gross-Matos is an older prospect who is a great deal of projection based on traits…Terrell Lewis is clearly talented, he’s also clearly an injury risk…Zack Baun is a 3-4 outside backer and he failed a drug test…Julian Okwara and Darrell Taylor are gaining a ton of momentum here late and could very well find themselves drafted in the 2nd round.

Interior Defensive Line: Derrick Brown and Javon Kinlaw continue to highlight the class…I do want to mention that there feels like a split here once again between the NFL and the scouting community…the scouting community seem to be head over heels for Derrick Brown…the NFL seems to ‘like’ Brown, but don’t appear to be in ‘love’ with his game due to poor testing results and a lack of pass rushing numbers…in fact, the whispers are suggesting that many out there have Javon Kinlaw ranked higher than Derrick Brown on their respective Big Boards…I like the 2nd round value of Neville Gallimore, Ross Blacklock, Marlon Davidson, and Justin Madubuike.

Linebackers: Isaiah Simmons is going to be a fascinating case…I KNOW the scouting community loves him…it is beginning to feel like the NFL is not certain they know what to do with him…some like him at Will, some at MLB, some at SS covering TE…it has a feel that Simmons could slide further than you would anticipate because teams just don’t have a defined role for him, and that scares them off…a slide outside the Top 10 should not be discounted…It’s not hard to get excited about Patrick Queen and Kenneth Murray at the next level…different type of players, but both bring upper-echelon intangibles and leadership to your defense…what’s fascinating about these two prospects–the teams that love them REALLY love them…there are a few teams currently in the teens and early 20’s who are irrationally high on Queen and Murray…Jordyn Brooks is a late-riser in the draft process…Brooks’ talent has never been in question, but his injury history is the biggest red flag…some sneaky 1st round upside here, ultimately, I believe he goes at the beginning of the 2nd round.

Cornerbacks: Jeffrey Okudah is a stud, not much else to state here…C.J. Henderson is as ‘red hot’ as a prospect can get, and everything that I have heard suggests that Henderson is a sure-fire Top 10 prospect whether it’s Carolina, Jacksonville, or Atlanta trading up…conversely, Kristian Fulton seems to be a scouting community favorite, and the NFL is significantly lower on him to the point that he is more likely to be a 2nd round pick than a 1st rounder (I still love his game, but I digress)…A.J. Terrell is rapidly climbing as well, to the point that he looks like a Top 20 pick…the NFL really likes his size and makeup for the position…Jeff Gladney feels like a safe 1st rounder…Noah Igbinoghene is the other name to consider–he appears to be on that 1st round/2nd round fringe.

Safeties: I’m not so sure the first safety off the board is either Xavier McKinney or Grant Delpit–there…I said it…McKinney feels like a jack of all trades, master of none…Grant Delpit is certainly sliding into the 2nd round conversation at this point…names to keep an eye out for–Antoine Winfield Jr., Jeremy Chinn, or Ashtyn Davis…Davis was not able to work out for NFL teams at the Scouting Combine, so I think that hurts his 1st round chances…expect Ashtyn Davis to be a rock solid 2nd round selection…there are A LOT of Antoine Winfield Jr. fans in the league…the pedigree is there and when you watch the tape, he simply makes plays…Jeremy Chinn is a ‘poor man’s’ Isaiah Simmons…freaking athleticism and size for the position…some teams covet him as a Safety, some as a Linebacker…sneaking into the back end of the 1st round is a certain possibility for Winfield Jr. or Chinn.