The 2016 NFL season is officially over, and the 2016 NFL draft is only 22 short weeks away. It’s time for some way too early, extremely outrageous predictions for this year’s draft.
- LA Rams Trade up to #1 Overall
New City. New Identity. What better of a way to build a new identity than drafting a young new quarterback to build around? In a flashy way that befits the team’s new hometown to boot. The Rams have arguably the two most intriguing prospects in the game in Todd Gurley and Aaron Donald anchoring both sides of the ball for years to come. What better of a time to take a gamble on the QB of the future?
The Titans could move the first overall pick this year, for the right price. They have their QB of the future, and stockpiling picks may be more beneficial to them than a star at #1 like LT Laremy Tunsil or DE Joey Bosa. The Rams have the 15th overall pick, and two second round picks in this year’s draft. Those three picks along with another high pick in next year’s draft, or offensive weapon Tavon Austin could be an offer the Titans can’t refuse.
So if the Titans want to move the first pick, and the Rams decide to trade up, who do they pick? There has been much speculation about who is the best quarterback in this draft, but after pro days, and the combine, I believe one will separate from the pack. I predict that the Rams will select Jared Goff with the first overall selection in the 2016 draft, and keep the CAL star in the Golden State for many years to come.
- 3 QB’s go in the top 5 for the first time since the 90’s
If my prediction above is correct, as outrageous as it is, it could create some turmoil within the top picks of the draft. In this pass happy league, there is nothing more important than a franchise quarterback. I believe this draft will be a historic one for the quarterback position.
3 quarterbacks have not gone in the top 15 since 2012, and regardless of if the first prediction is true, I believe that will happen. However, if the Rams do trade up to nab a QB, this draft will take an even crazier turn. 3 quarterbacks go in the top 5 for the first time since 1999 (when the position went 1, 2, 3.)
There is no doubt that the Cleveland Browns, under the new direction of head coach Hue Jackson, will draft a quarterback at their second overall slot. If the Rams trade up to get Goff, the Browns will be forced to go to the number two guy on their board, who I believe will be Paxton Lynch out of Memphis. This pick will allow Carson Wentz to fall to the Cowboys at selection #4, who need to take a gamble on their QB of the future under the injury prone Tony Romo.
- Worst First Round for Wide Receivers in the Past 5 Years
The times they are a changing, at least for the wide receiver position. As the league puts a higher emphasis on the highflying passing attack, and changes its rules to protect the receiver, this position is at a premium. In the past 5 years, there have been an average of over 4 wide receivers taken in the first round. You have to go back to 2010 to find a draft where only 2 wide receivers were taken in round 1, Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas. I believe that this draft will be the first time in the past half decade where only 2 wideout’s are taken in round 1.
The depth of wide receiver talent is just not what it has been in the past couple of drafts, despite the need being there. I believe Laquon Treadwell and Corey Coleman are the only real first round talents at WR, with Michael Thomas right on the outside of round 1. This is a talented draft, but the talent lies not with the pass catchers. I believe the teams searching for their next star WR will search in the second round not the first.
By Ben Miller