Draft Day 1 Recap - Winners and Team Outlooks
By: Joshua Hayes @EVRD
Tua Tagovailoa was selected with the 5th overall pick by the Miami Dolphins.
The tank for Tua is now complete, even after Miami won a few late season games last year that bumped them out of the range for the top 4 picks in the 2020 NFL Draft. Tua provides immense upside for a team that is hoping to build a strong offense. The lefty is an injury concern after having offseason hip surgery, but winning immediately will not be a concern with the young roster that Miami is building via draft picks from this year and next. The future is bright for the Dolphins, who have their quarterback of the future in Tua and the second most amount of picks remaining in this year's draft at 12.
Isaiah Simmons was selected at the 8th overall pick by the Arizona Cardinals.
A versatile defensive player with freak athletic abilities will help the Cardinals on the defensive side of the ball. Simmons is known for versatility, with the ability to play many different positions on defense, notably inside linebacker, outsider linebacker, safety, nickelback, or rover.
Jerry Jeudy was selected 15th overall by the Denver Broncos.
Combined with Courtland Sutton, the Broncos look to have a dynamic receiving group for young quarterback Drew Lock. Jeudy was the highest ranked wide receiver in this deep draft, and the Broncos got him second off the board after the Raiders reached for speed with Henry Ruggs III. In Jeudy, the Broncos are getting an elite route-runner with athletic measurables who will keep secondaries honest.
CeeDee Lamb was selected 17th overall by the Dallas Cowboys.
Dak Prescott just got another weapon to pair with Amari Cooper, which should translate to a powerful passing offense to compliment the running abilities of Zeke Elliott. Lamb has great running abilities after the catch as a slippery runner with excellent vision, and he boasts big play talent at all three levels of the field.
Team Outlooks: Some things change, and some things stay the same
The Packers moved up in the draft to select Jordan Love with the 26th pick. This is reminiscent of the 2005 draft in which the Packers took a young Aaron Rodgers while still having an aging Brett Favre on the roster. That move created hostility in the locker room, as the transition between the two gifted, franchise quarterbacks was anything but smooth. The Packers have shown that they are planning for the post-Rodgers team, and instead of drafting available talent at wide receiver or for the offensive line, the Packers picked the successor to Rodgers. Rodgers remarked earlier in the week that the team had not selected a skilled position player in the first round in 15 years, and that streak will continue.
The Raiders select speedster Henry Ruggs III as the first wide receiver off the board, at the 12th overall pick. Ruggs ran a sub 4.27 forty-yard dash, which was the fastest out of this loaded wide receiver class. Since 2000, the Raiders have selected 33% of all players who have run a sub-4.3 forty-yard dash. If Al Davis were still around he would certainly be proud of this pick, due to the speed of Ruggs and the Raiders disregard for receivers who were slower than Ruggs but were ranked higher by many in Jeudy and Lamb.
The Patriots ended up trading their first round pick to the Chargers, in order to move back to the second and third rounds, with the 37th and 71st overall picks. The Patriots have made similar moves in years X, trading their first round pick into more picks. After draft day 1, the Patriots now have the most picks remaining, at 14 total.
Drafting can often be a crapshoot, so having more picks, even later in the draft, is a sound strategy for hitting more often on talented prospects.
The Patriots have the following picks remaining in the 2020 NFL Draft: 2nd round pick 5 (37 overall), 3rd round pick 7 (71 overall), 3rd round pick 23 (87 overall), 3rd round pick 34 (98 overall), 3rd round pick 36 (100 overall), 4th round pick 19 (125 overall), 4th round pick 33 (139 overall), 5th round pick 27 (172 overall), 6th round pick 16 (195 overall), 6th round pick 25 (204 overall), 6th round pick 33 (212 overall), 6th round pick 34 (213 overall) and 7th round pick 16 (230 overall).