Current Cap Space: $78.3m
Mingo - 2 years/$4m - $2m per
Desir - 1 year/$1m - $1m per
Updated Cap Space: $75.3 million
Main FAs: Justin Pugh OG - 5 years/$60m - $12m per - The rumblings are saying Norwell is headed to the Giants, linking up with Gettleman. Pugh is the next best thing available on the market. Capable of playing guard and tackle, but really excels when playing inside which is were I would slot him. Pugh is looking for big money and he will receive it, whether it's from us or somebody else. He is an immediate starter and immediately becomes probably our roster's best lineman.
EJ Gaines CB - 5 years/$60m - $12m per - EJ is a corner that is under appreciated by the league. He has reasonably quietly become a top tier CB and will be paid as such. $12m per is just short of the contract AJ Bouye received as the top FA CB last year. Gaines takes over as the CB#1 with Quincy Wilson and Pierre Desir behind him, and Hairston playing as the nickel.
Anthony Hitchens ILB - 4 years/$24m - $6m per - Eberflus picks up the starting MLB he coached in Dallas. Hitchens had a nice role for himself as the MIKE in Rod Marinelli's system. A system that demands a great deal of skillset versatility, coverage, blitzing and run stopping. A defensive priority this year should be to make sure that Antonio Morrison and Jon Bostic never see the field on defense in a Colts uniform again. Having Hitchens will give us a dependable player in the middle of the defense for the first time since Jerrell Freeman.
Trey Burton TE - 3 years/$7.5m - £2.5m per - Trey carved out a role for himself on the SuperBowl winning Eagles offense as the uber-athletic Y-seam-TE opposite Zach Ertz. Catching 23 balls last season, whilst going for 5TDs. Reuniting him with Frank Reich will give us what we envisioned Erik Swoope might someday become, but never quite did, at a price that is not very steep.
Cameron Fleming T - 4 years/$24m - $6m per - A swing tackle that showed quality during his spot starts. The Patriots also have Nate Solder and LaAdrian Waddle hitting the market. Fleming has shown chops but never won the starting job outright. He's the kind of player I can see Ballard giving a step up in responsibility to. He's my starting RT.
Todd Davis ILB - 4 years/$20m - $5m per - With Eberflus having a background in Linebackers, signing a couple of FA starters would not surprise me. Davis starts as the WILL next to Hitchens.
Cody Latimer WR - 2 years/$7.5m - $3.5m per - In much the same fashion as Donte Moncreif, he's a strapping 6'2, 215lbs receiver that hasn't lived up to his draft position/hype. In a crowded WR corps dominated by Demarius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders, Latimer has struggled to break through. With an increase in targets and an improvement in QB play, hs fortunes could turn around.
Updated Cap Space: $27.3 million
#1 - Cleveland Browns - Saquon Barkley - RB - Penn State - The Browns have #1 & #4. They realise that Barkley is a special talent and is with little doubt the BPA of the draft. They reason they can take him at #1 and still be assured that at least 2 of Josh Rosen, Sam Darnold, Josh Allen and Baker Mayfield will be available at #4. Cleveland run away with the future of their offense.
#2 - New York Giants - Bradley Chubb - DE - NC State - I personally don't see a QB enticing enough to use a #2 overall pick on them unless you have an immediate need for a starter, especially when there are blue chip prospects left on the board that can help immediately. Eli has time left so I'm saying they leave the QB search for this round. I'm a big fan of Chubb and I'd love for him to reach #3. Sadly, the most recent reports (probably smoke screens but I'm a sucker for a juicy rumour) are that the Giants are moving away from taking a QB at #2. The Giants are moving to a more hybrid front defense than their more traditional 4-3 front. Chubb has the athletic ability to excel in both fronts. There are reports that some NFL coaches see Chubb as being a better overall player than Myles Garrett was when he came out last year.
#3 - New York Jets - Josh Rosen - QB - UCLA - The Jets trade up from #6 to #3 in order to bypass both the Browns and Broncos for a long awaited franchise QB. Rosen is lethal from the pocket but has more issues on the move. He's a technician with his footwork and those mechanics help with his accuracy. He's the first QB off the board.
#4 - Cleveland Browns - Josh Allen - QB - Wyoming - The Browns snap up their QB of the future. Allen has been compared favourably to Carson Wentz. Both are big-bodied, big-armed, mid-western QBs. Although he doesn't have the mobility and elusiveness that Wentz has, he has a howitzer for an arm, and is by a long way the best arm talent of the top QBs this year. His ceiling is his big selling point, and it is truly massive.
#5 - Denver Broncos - Sam Darnold - QB - USC - Vance Joseph has no loyalty towards any of the QBs currently on the roster. Darnold is a streaky player and that is the reason he's the 3rd QB off the board here. At his best he's a top QB prospect, but he has points where he has looked rattled. He needs to improve his ball security, but in general is an accurate passer and will certainly be a better option going forward than Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch.
1st Round - #6 - Indianapolis Colts - Quenton Nelson - G - Notre Dame - 6'5 329lbs - Nelson is the safest pick in the draft this year. It's not often an interior lineman gets drafted this high but that is a testament to his ability and potential. Nelson is an exceptional run blocker but is not the liability in pass protection that traditional road graders like Mike Iupati often are. He's big but he's not fat. He's known around the CFB world for his intimidating power that allows him to forklift defenders to create massive running lanes. He sets well in pass protection and will rarely be beaten by pure power defenders on the interior. He completes an offensive line that should now be a great strength of the team, particularly on the interior.
Castonzo - Nelson - Kelly - Pugh - Fleming
1st Round - #31 - Harold Landry - EDGE - Boston College - 6'3 252lbs - Landry is a sprinter off the edge in the same mould as Vic Beasley. Like Vic Beasley he'll need to learn early on to be an actual pass rusher, not just a sprinter. Once he puts it together he could be a quality speed rusher to lead the rotation off the edge with Jabaal Sheard. He's not as tall as some would like but has good arm length. He needs to learn some pass rush moves rather than just his primary inside move, with help from Mathis he has the agility to add a dangerous outside spin move to his repertoire. Needs development but has big upside
2nd Round - #37 - Sony Michel - RB - Georgia - 5'11 220lbs - Well built back with a powerful lower body. He has enough power to break tackles inside and the speed and acceleration to break a big run once he hits the 2nd level. He possesses good vision and is adept at finding holes and following lead blockers or pulling guards. 2 year team captain. Has less wear on his tires due to sharing a backfield with Nick Chubb. Doesn't take losses whilst trying to be a hero. Not a great pass catcher but has 3rd down value as an excellent pass protector. Will be the thunder to Marlon Mack's lightning.
2nd Round - #49 - Christian Kirk - WR - Texas A&M - 5'11 200lbs - Kirk is a well-built receiver who plies his trade from the slot. More quick than fast, although he ran a respectable 4.47 at the combine. Sudden in and out of breaks. Has strong hands. Will be a good quality chain mover on hitch routes, protecting the catch well. Experience returning kicks but may not have the long speed to do it in the league. Got separation in college but benefitted from schemed rub routes.
3rd Round - #67 - Maurice Hurst - DT - Michigan - 6'2 282lbs - Hurst has been mocked as high as the top 5 before now. Although his lack of scheme versatility, ideal size for the position and the 2 scary words scouts hate cropping up at the combine, "heart condition", could well drop him on draft day. The heart condition was apparently found whilst he was at Michigan, and he was subsequently cleared to play, but it could scare some teams as it has the potential to shorten his career. Apart from the evident weaknesses, he definitely has strengths. He has a terrific burst off of the snap. His quickness and motor allows him to make plays way outside his assigned gap. Effective twister. Adds to the rotation in the middle of the Dline and could be an interesting play at LDE in a Seahawks style 'Elephant Package'.
5th Round - #140 - Kyzir White - S - West Virginia - 6'2 216lbs - Designated hitter and Geathers insurance. White isn't the most explosive athlete but he is a great run supporter. In college he often played as the Spur hybrid LB/S. He is a freight train blitzer. Team captain and locker room leader. Very physical with TEs in man coverage. He is not necessarily a coverage liability but is most definitely at his best when asked to play as a box safety. This fits in the cover 3 that a lot of us assume we'll be seeing a lot of. He could back up Geathers and earn time in tri-Safety packages since Butler won't be resigned and TJ Green has no business being on the roster post-training camp.
6th Round - #178 - Scott Quessenbury - C - UCLA - 6'4 315lbs - Scott was a 4 year starter as the leader of the UCLA offensive line, 3 of them in front of Josh Rosen. Whilst Ryan Kelly has proved worthy of his 1st round status, he has had an issue with concussions so it would be wise to pickup a competent backup. Quessenbury is very much a jack of all trades but could stand to be coached to tighten up his overall technique. His hand work is good and he latches on well. He might have some positional versatility as a guard. Always good to have an excess of decent offensive linemen.
7th Round - #221 - BPA