Western Courier

NFL draft induces pandemonium

Christopher Bean, Sports Writer

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“With the first pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select Baker Mayfield, Quarterback Oklahoma.” This was just the beginning of the pandemonium after Roger Goodell introduced the new Brown, Mayfield on Thursday night.

The former walk-on not once, but twice, was this year’s Heisman trophy winner, and is now walking into a mess in Cleveland. The Browns are 1-31 in the last two seasons, and have picked their leader who can hopefully get them over the hump, and finally last as a quarterback in a Browns uniform. It was a little bit of a shock because no one thought he would be number one until 24 hours before the pick. He brings in great talent and great motivation into the organization. But a lot of questions have been asked with his leadership.

He’s been scrutinized after being arrested last summer, and his on-field antics. People are concerned that he will end up like Johnny Manziel. Manziel showed more concerns, and Mayfield is a much better locker room leader than him. Of course it’s a reach when you pass up on a player like Saquon Barkley, but it’s a passing league and Browns went for their guy.

That’s not the only pick Cleveland had that night, and they didn’t have to wait long before they got their next guy. At number four they got cornerback Denzel Ward from Ohio State. When and where the Browns got him was a shocker. defensive-end Bradley Chubb from North Carolina State, and defensive-back Minkah Fitzpatrick from Alabama, who I think was the best corner in the draft, were still available. The Browns could have easily traded back and still pick Ward, and they would’ve got more for it as well. But this pick proves why they are trash, and have only won a single game in two years.

The New York Giants got a generational talent with running back from Penn State, Barkley at the number two spot. This will put him on the same offense with Odell Beckham Jr… I know scary, right? They also added to their depleted offense line, adding guard Will Hernandez from UTEP. They did pass up on a quarterback, but they still have Eli Manning, so they decided to at least wait awhile until they get their franchise QB.

Jets got quarterback Sam Darnold out of USC at number three. He’s personally, my favorite QB in the draft. Two years ago he took over a 1-3 team and lead them to a 10-3 season, winning the Rose Bowl. Going into last year’s season, Darnold got a lot of hype rightfully so. But with poor offensive line play, Darnold committed a lot of turnovers, questioning his play. He still threw for over 4,000 yards and 26 touchdowns. I’m very excited to see how he turns out at the next level.

Broncos added Bradley Chubb at number five. All you need to know is that Chubb and Von Miller will be playing on the same defense.

At six the Colts got guard Quenton Nelson from Notre Dame. Andrew Luck will finally have someone to give him some time to throw.

The Bills traded up to number seven to pick QB from Wyoming, Josh Allen. Allen will be a project to work with that’s for sure. In his senior year, he only won seven games in a very weak conference. Bills made the playoffs last, but traded quarterback Tyrod Taylor to the Browns this offseason. Allen won’t be forced to produce right away, and might even be a backup for a while.

The Chicago Bears picked up the best linebacker in college football last year at number eight. Former Georgia Bulldog, Roquan Smith. Smith has all the intangibles to be very successful for a log time in this league. He led his defense to the national championship game last, only to fall short to Alabama. This is a big addition to a defense that was top-ten in the league last year.

The 49ers picked up tackle Mike McGlinchey from Notre Dame. A very smart pick from GM John Lynch. This will give his talented QB Jimmy Garoppolo some time to throw in the pocket. Even though they won six games last year, this is a lot of expectations from this young team, and this will certainly help them.

The Cardinals drafted QB Josh Rosen from UCLA at number 10. Rosen was very frustrated that he went 10th overall. He said that there were nine mistakes in front of him, and he’s never been more motivated in his life until now. An attitude the Cardinals need, after Carson Palmer retired during the offseason.

This wraps up the very entertaining top-10. The rest of the round was very exciting, as linebacker Tremaine Edmunds and safety Derwin James went at 16 and 17 falling because of all the quarterbacks that went. The Baltimore Ravens traded with the Eagles to get Lamar Jackson at number 32 to close out the first round.

One of the biggest and emotional moments of the draft was Shaquem Griffin being drafted at number 141 in the fifth round to the Seattle Seahawks. I had to mention him because Griffin was on the 13-0 UCF (National Champ) team. Griffin does not have a left hand and will be playing in the NFL. He will be the first player to do so in the history of the league. Who knows how his career will go. But his dream came true, and he will be playing alongside his brother Shaquill Griffin.

This draft saw five quarterbacks drafted in the first, a QB who said there were nine mistakes in front of him, and the Browns being the Browns. Nevertheless, at the end of the day, there were 256 lives that have been changed forever after this weekend.

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NFL draft induces pandemonium