If I’m being completely honest, I forgot that the NFL Draft was this week until Monday. There’s just no juice to it. For one, the whole process and the extra-sticky layer of bullshit that has come to coat it, thanks to the internet/social media content farms, has just become incredibly tiresome. Both the bullshit that gets leaked by teams and agents to try and influence the draft, and the pearl-clutching that generally comes as a result. The whole thing is a work.
On top of that, the Saints basically have nothing to do for two days.
That said, LSU should have two first rounders tonight, and it’s disrespectful to guys like Devin White and Greedy Williams, each of whom are about to have one of the bigger moments of their lives, to ignore that.
It’s also disrespectful to Daisy Mae.
So here are some thoughts on tonight and the rest of this weekend’s festivities.
- Devin White is the safest pick tonight and the team that selects him will be able to plug him in the middle of their defense for the next 8-10 years, barring injury. I’m sure scouts wish White were a little taller, but he does everything you want out of a modern day linebacker. He covers, he stops the run inside or out, he takes on blockers and has great speed as a blitzer. And on top of that, he has every intangible you could hope for.
- Greedy Williams is still going in the first round. He’ll likely be this year’s “rumor has it” guy, although I certainly hope he won’t have to deal with the out-and-out bullshit Derrius Guice had to last year. But he’ll get picked, because no matter what anybody says, an ace man-to-man cover guy that can also get his head around and play the ball — and the NFL is full of good cornerbacks who lack those kind of ball skills — is something that will always be in demand. His game will need work, no question; he still struggles in off-coverage, and he’s not the best tackler. That’s what you pay a coach for.
- Foster Moreau is probably the next off the board, in the first 200 picks or so. Personally, I’m not sure I agree with Seth on his upside, but he can definitely play at the next level. Moreau’s a tough blocker that can run and catch relatively well, but I think he might struggle to separate consistently. That said, he could easily put together a very nice career a la someone like the Saints’ Ben Watson or Josh Hill.
- It won’t be high, but don’t be surprised if Nick Brossette gets picked, or is at least a priority free agent. He wasn’t the most impressive back here, but he has some added value as a zone-running specialist. He sees the wide/tight zone plays really well, and that’s going to put him higher on the boards of certain teams.
- Among the non-LSU guys, I think people are missing some of the point on Kyler Murray. It’s not the 5-9 part that worries me, it’s the 190-pound part. Yeah, he got up over two bills for the Combine, but I doubt he’ll play at that weight, and I think durability at that size is a big question. Yeah, he’s a tough target to hit, but nobody can avoid NFL defenders forever. That said, he’s clearly the best quarterback in this group.
- After him, Dwayne Haskins can damn sure spin the ball. Question is can he operate in the NFL structure.
- As for the rest of these QBs, there’s developmental potential, but I’m not sure the NFL is in that business these days.
- So everyone’s just going to ignore Greedy Williams and Kristian Fulton shutting down D.K. Metcalf, huh? Or the fact that despite being huge and fast, his agility testing (much more important for a receiver, in my opinion) are mediocre. Or that he was never remotely a dominant receiver at Ole Miss. Certainly not like A.J. Brown.
- In general, I don’t love this receiver group if you’re looking for a go-to guy. But there are a lot of take-and-bake prospects that could be really good down the line, in my opinion: Hakeem Butler, Marquise Brown, Deebo Samuel, JJ Arcega-Whiteside and Paris Campbell.
- As for the Saints...well, I’ve given up on them doing traditionally smart things in the draft, but I hope they at least consider addressing receiver and offensive line depth — the two things that hurt them the most down the stretch last season. They could also use another back. I like the Latavius Murray signing, but I’d consider a little insurance as well. Plus, its going to be really hard to pay both Mike Thomas and Alvin Kamara in a year or two.