Thursday, April 26, 2018

2018 NFL Draft Round 1 highlights

Photo Credit: Tim Heitman- USA TODAY Sports

By: Jon Opiela
Twitter: @jonopiela24

Round one of the 2018 NFL Draft is in the books and here are some notable picks from opening night in Arlington, TX.

New York Jets, Pick #3 - Sam Darnold, QB, USC:

Darnold will have a chance to make an immediate impact in New York, potentially getting a chance to start over Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater.  Darnold has a strong arm to go along with good accuracy and athleticism.

Denver Broncos, Pick #5 – Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State:

Paired with Von Miller, Bradley Chubb has the ability to put up strong sack numbers in his first season.  Chubb is also an above-average run stopper and come drop back in coverage.

Indianapolis Colts, Pick #6 – Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame:

Possibly the top pick of the first round.  Nelson has the potential to come in and become an All-Pro in his rookie season.  Colts GM Chris Ballard made at least three trips to see Nelson in action in South Bend last season, including being the only GM at the Notre Dame pro day.

Chicago Bears, Pick #8 – Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia:

Fittingly, the Bears picked the Butkus Award winner.  Smith made a huge impact in the Georgia defense on their way to the National Championship game.  Smith is a great read-and-react player, who also has the speed and quickness to develop into a good cover linebacker.

San Fransisco 49ers, Pick #9 – Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame:

McGlinchey has a similar overall blocking package to Quenton Nelson.  The 49ers have a Pro Bowl left tackle in Joe Staley, so expect McGlinchey to flip to right tackle. McGlinchey does appear to be an improvement over current starting RT Trent Brown.

New England Patriots, Pick #23 – Isaiah Wynn, T, Georgia:

While most of the NFL would view Wynn as a LT conversion, he has a chance to be a LT in New England.  He pops out of his stance quickly and he also fits well into a zone scheme.  Wynn also made a name for himself as an excellent pass protector while at Georgia.