NFL Draft Outcomes

Teams came out of this years draft as winners and losers.

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Teams came out of this year’s draft as winners and losers.

Carson Field, Sports Editor

Last week, the NFL Draft took place, and teams are hoping to see improvement from the players they drafted. Some of the teams came out of the draft as winners, while others left Chicago not as comfortable.


Buffalo Bills

Finishing 8-8 in 2015, the Bills had some holes to fill on the offensive and defensive side, and it is safe to say that they drafted players with heavy potential to excel in the pros. In the first round, they went with Clemson defensive end Shaq Lawson. Lawson did not win an excess of awards in college, but he has the size and abilities to become an elite pass rusher in the NFL. The Bills also added talent to the defensive side of the ball by drafting linebacker Reggie Ragland in the second round. Ragland was evaluated by most draft analysts as first round talent, but teams passed on him, leaving Buffalo as the lucky team that was able to pick him up in round two. The Bills took risks in the later rounds, selecting quarterback Cardale Jones and running back Jonathan Williams, who were both weapons in college and have the potential to bolster the Buffalo offense.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars were noted by most as the ultimate winner of the NFL Draft, as they got two of the prospects in the entire draft with their first two picks. In the first round, they selected cornerback Jalen Ramsey, who was noted as the best defensive back in this draft class, and one of the best overall players in the class. With their second round pick, they drafted UCLA linebacker Myles Jack, who was also noted as one of the best overall players in this draft class. Teams held off from picking him in the first round because of a knee injury he suffered in his junior season. Despite his injury, Jack has great potential to be a star in the league. They showed significant improvement in 2015, and with this draft class, this team has the potential to be scary good in a couple of years.

Minnesota Vikings

While they did not draft the flashy, star players, the Minnesota Vikings escaped Chicago with a solid group of prospects. The Vikings drafted wide receiver Laquon Treadwell with their first pick. Treadwell was a standout receiver at Ole Miss, as he was awarded First Team All-SEC in 2015 and was a Biletnikoff finalist. While many scouts have doubts about his NFL potential due to his speed, his hands are what sets him apart from the competition. Minnesota picking Treadwell was a solid pick, but what they did in the later rounds is what capped off their great draft. They bolstered their defense in the later rounds by selecting standout Clemson cornerback Mackensie Alexander and Missouri linebacker Kentrell Brothers, who led the FBS in tackles in 2015. They also took a big offensive risk by drafting German receiver, Moritz Boehringer, who was a star in the German Football League, and could be a star in the NFL. While none of these players were in the top ten overall prospects, all of them have the potential to be NFL stars.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Bucs started the draft with a safe pick in round one, drafting cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III. Hargreaves showed significant NFL potential in his college career at Florida, as he was awarded First Team All-SEC three times. However, the Buccaneers made some strange picks in the later rounds. With their first pick in the second round, they drafted defensive end Noah Spence. Spence was a solid pass rusher at Ohio State before he was kicked out for failing multiple drug tests. He then transferred to Eastern Kentucky and had a great season, winning co-Defensive Player of the Year in the Ohio Valley Conference. While Spence had a solid career, his off the field issues are a concern, making this a risky pick. Later in the second round, the Bucs traded up to get kicker Roberto Aguayo. You read this correctly, a kicker. Aguayo was known to most college football fans as easily the best kicker in the NCAA, but the second round is way too early for a kicker.

New England Patriots

Due to Deflategate, the New England Patriots entered the 2016 NFL Draft without a first-round pick, which hurt them. While they did not have many picks that were awful, they did not add much star power to their roster. What many see as the club’s best pick was wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell out of Georgia. Mitchell had a solid career as a Bulldog, and many scouts think he has the abilities to become a pivotal part of the Patriots’ offense. However, aside from Mitchell, the Patriots did not make many significant picks. The pick that raised the most eyebrows came in the third round when the Pats drafted quarterback Jacoby Brissett out of North Carolina State. Brissett was solid in college, but he was never a standout player. One reason this pick is so confusing is that the Patriots already have a backup quarterback in Jimmy Garoppolo. Also, there were much better quarterbacks on the board when he was drafted, including Connor Cook and Dak Prescott.