First round of NFL Draft features a host of talented players

By ISAIAH MCCALL
On April 3, 2019

Photo courtesy of Smashdown Sports News, Flickr

What an incredible ride this NFL offseason has become. There was Le’Veon Bell surprisingly choosing to suit up in the green and white of the New York Jets, and Antonio Brown’s scare of signing with the dead end Buffalo Bills, but then pulling an early April Fools joke only to then sign with the dead end Oakland Raiders.

Perhaps craziest of all, we now live in a world in which it’s no longer shameful to wear a Browns jersey, thanks in large part to that guy who stars in all those Head & Shoulder commercials (and no, it’s not Troy Polamalu).

But with the NFL Draft a little more than three weeks away, it’s safe to say that the offseason is just getting into second gear, as crazy as that sounds with the current mayhem of the 2019 offseason. So let’s take a look at what teams are looking for in the upcoming draft and what players are currently standing out amongst the incoming freshman class.

This year, all eyes are fixated on the 5-foot-10 quarterback from Oklahoma, Kyler Murray. Coming fresh off abandoning the Oakland Athletics, it seems Murray has a lot to prove for a guy who was initially hyping up the possibility of playing two professional sports.

And who’s looking to steal? Well according to draft analysts it’s the Arizona Cardinals, a team that used a high draft pick last year on quarterback Josh Rosen.

“Arizona is going to take Murray No. 1,” an unnamed general manager told ESPN’s Mike Sando.

“I’m not betting,” the GM then said after Sando asked him whether he was figuratively betting on it. “I’m telling you, it’s going to happen.”

If Cardinals fans wanted anymore insurance that Murray would be sporting red and white this season, coach Kliff Kingsbury once became giddy with joy over the possibility of drafting Murray.

“I’d take him with the first pick in the draft, if I could,” Kingsbury said back in October, when he was still coaching at Texas Tech. “I know he’s signed up to play baseball, but he’s a dominant football player. I would take him with the first pick.”

Many of the other big prospects in the draft this year come in the form of defensive players. Linebackers Josh Allen, Devin White, Devin Bush and star-studded defensive ends Nick Bosa and Montez Sweat are all expected to go somewhere within the first 15 picks of the draft.

While many teams look to fill minor (or major) gaps in the draft, one team that is looking incredibly deficient this year is the New York Giants. Almost like a hungry man crawling toward a piece of mold-ridden bread that’s been left on the street, the Giants are desperate for anything they can get in this year’s draft.

After receiving two first-round picks for trading star wide receiver Odell Beckham to the Browns, New York needs to seriously consider drafting a quarterback to replace 38-year-old Eli Manning. Hopefully they’ll also wise up enough to look for a wide receiver to fill the colossal-sized shoes that have been left in Beckham’s departure.

And since they’ve already been drinking the crazy juice this offseason, maybe trading up for Murray isn’t out of the question either. After all – and this offseason is a testament to that – stranger things have happened.

 

imccall@ramapo.edu

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