Before the first round of the NFL Draft yesterday, I made some predictions. Five to be exact. I went through a bunch of scenarios and made some semi-educated guesses as to what would happen.
How did I do? While we wait for the second and third rounds to start tonight, let’s review. But be warned. Not all of them are fantastic, so I’ll take your slings and arrows in the comments section.
Here we go:
1st original prediction: The Dolphins will take QB Ryan Tannehill.
How right was I? Very right. Nailed this one. As if it was that hard. The Dolphins were in desperate need of a QB, and when they went after Matt Flynn in lukewarm fashion this offseason, the best guess was that it was for Tannehill. Yet as of 5 p.m. yesterday, even the prospect didn’t know he was the pick. Our own Jeff Darlington reported that GM Jeff Ireland didn’t tell anyone besides his wife how much he loved Tannehill because he didn’t want to alter his own opinion. The suspense worked. They got their guy.
2nd original prediction: North Alabama CB Janoris Jenkins will go in the top 15.
How right was I? Uh, not right at all. Jenkins slid and slid, and as we head into the second round, he still hasn’t been picked. I misjudged the needs of teams at CB. Cowboys coach Jason Garrett called it a “premiere” position, and it is. I figured someone would just decide to put Jenkins’ issues aside and grab him. Didn’t happen. I think the main issue is that whatever problems Jenkins had in college, he didn’t change his lifestyle drastically enough when he go to UNA. He still did some of those things at North Alabama. Few think he’s a “bad guy,” just naive. But still, he’ll almost certainly be snatched up early in the second round, maybe by No. 35. But teams weren’t needy enough to put his past aside completely.
3rd original prediction: The Mark Barron trade rumors will turn out to be true.
How right was I? Pretty right on this one. All week, we were hearing Barron wouldn’t make it out of the Top 10. An elite, playmaking, smart safety, Barron is a rarity. And teams were scrambling to have the right to draft him. The Cowboys wanted to grab him, but they felt by the time the draft rolled around that he’d be gone. In the end, Barron went to No. 7 to the Bucs, so easily in the Top 10. Rumors were right. Teams really did fall in love with this dude. And, to be clear, I think Barron’ll be a great player, too. The only thing is, he’s not the most athletic of safeties, so do his intangibles come from the coaching of Alabama coach Nick Saban? Or are they his own? We’ll see.
4th original prediction: The Patriots will make two first-round trades.
How right was I? Eh, it sounds like I was more right than I actually was. I mean, the Pats did make two trades in the first, so I hit that one on the head. But I thought they’d trade up for a defensive playmaker, then trade out of the first. Nope. They traded up for a playmaker in Syracuse’s Chandler Jones and then traded up again for Alabama’s Dont’a Hightower. I love the picks, assuming Jones pans out, and I love how Bill Belichick finally traded up. To me, it’s like he was waiting for the rookie salary scale to do it. And he did. This defensive is suddenly better.
5th original prediction: South Carolina’s Melvin Ingram and Alabama’s Courtney Upshaw will fall
How right was I? I’d say I was mostly right on this one. My guess was that both athletic, front-seven studs would fall because they are short. People would have a tough time figuring out where to play them. At defensive end or linebacker? And that’s what happened. Upshaw, who had crazy production in college, is still available in the second round. And Ingram slipped all the way to the Chargers at No. 18, which is much further than anyone thought. He was slated to be a Top 10 guy. I still don’t know where either guy will play, but maybe it will work. There is a lot of talent there. And maybe Ingram or Upshaw is like LaMarr Woodley, who thrives even while being shorter than you’d want. Or, maybe not.