One of, if not the, “dud” divisions in the league for the 2020 NFL season. It looked for all the world like no one would ever step up to claim the Division Title and a trip to the Play-Offs. The team with no real name finally captured the dubious distinction of prevailing with a sub-.500, 7-9 record. Changes have been made by all members of the division, including a new Head Coach in Philadelphia. The biggest news seemed to be split between the trade of CARSON WENTZ from the Eagles and DAK PRESCOTT finally getting his mega-contract from Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. The Giants have the fewest Picks with 6, but the Cowboys and Eagles each have double digit Picks for now. As a division, the teams own 35 total Picks.
Round 1, Pick 10 PATRICK SURTAIN CB Alabama
Round 2, Pick 44 JOE TRYON ER/DE Washington
Round 3, Pick 75 LIAM EICHENBERG OT Notre Dame
Round 3, Pick 99 SHAKA TONEY OB/ER Penn State
Round 4, Pick. 115 JACOBY STEVENS LB/S LSU
Round 4, Pick 1113 KENNY YEBOAH TE Ole Miss
Round 5, Pick 179 DEMETRIC FELTON RB/WR/RS UCLA
Round 6, Pick 192 KHYIRIS TONGA DT BYU
Round 6, Pick 227 BUDDY JOHNSON ILB Texas A&M
Round 7, Pick 238 TYLER COYLE S Purdue
It seems like the Cowboys have been re-shaping their secondary personnel for a decade or more, but they continue working on getting it right. SURTAIN is an instant starter, with pro pedigree and Saban tutoring. The versatility and athleticism of STEVENS should reinforce both the LB and S groups. COYLE is an underrated S that posted some impressive numbers at his Pro Day. EICHENBERG is a savvy, steady player that may end up starting on the OL by mid-season. In an effort to give LAWRENCE some help with the pass-rush, the team doubled-down on TRYON and TONEY. Only 3 Picks for the Offense, but keep an eye on the versatile FELTON who UCLA Coach CHIP KELLY used in multiple roles in his Offense over the past couple of years. He’s a flash player.
Round 1, Pick 11 JAYCEE HORN CB South Carolina
Round 2, Pick 42 CARLOS BASHAM DE Wake Forest
Round 3, Pick 76 ALIM McNEILL DT N.C. State
Round 4, Pick 116 BRADY CHRISTENSEN OT BYU
Round 6, Pick 196 MALCOLM KOONCE ER/OB Buffalo
Round 6, Pick 201 NOAH GRAY TE Duke
GM GETTLEMAN found himself with the smallest draft group in the division. So he spread the Picks around hoping to have boosted his roster where it was most needed. HORN is an instant upgrade for the secondary as a serious possibility to earn the title of Shutdown Corner with his savvy and talent. One of the most important draftees beyond HORN is likely BOOGIE BASHAM in Round 2, who can set the edge against the run, and most importantly, has shown some serious pass-rush ability in his college career. They also attempted to replace the unsung TOMLINSON on the DL with McNEILL, who like TOMLINSON, does the dirty work inside, but also shows flashes of inside pocket pressure. CHRISTENSEN was a solid workman in a pro style BYU Offense. If he works out, they could have a quality group at OT, with most of them under 25. KOONCE had a solid career in college as an edge-rusher. He has quickness, good body bend, and a high-rev engine.
Round 1, Pick 12 TRAVIS ETIENNE RB Clemson
Round 2, Pick 37 ELIJAH MOORE WR Ole Miss
Round 3, Pick 70 QUINN MEINERZ OC/G UW/Whitewater
Round 84, Pick 84 AARON ROBINSON CB UCF
Round 4, Pick 123 JEROME JOHNSON DT Indiana
Round 5, Pick 150 JONATHAN ADAMS WR Arkansas State
Round 6, Pick 189 DAVID MOORE OG Grambling
Round 6, Pick 224 JOSHUA KAINDOH DE Florida State
Round 6, Pick 225 DARRICK FORREST S Cincinnati
Round 7, Pick 234 CURTIS ROBINSON LB Stanford
Round 7, Pick 240 DRUE CHRISMAN P Ohio State
The Eagles made sure to address their weakest roster points. MOORE and ADAMS are both more athletic than the vets they replace in the receiver group. Their OL has gotten old as a group, and the draft emphasis was two, small school wide bodies in MEINERZ and MOORE, both of whom were revelations at the Senior Bowl. They are also massive and strong. The teams RB group has been underwhelming in recent years, except for MILES SANDERS, but he has been nicked up quite a bit in his brief pro career. ETIENNE gives him a running mate that has shown he can do it all in his career at Clemson. Conspicuous by absence is the lack of a QB in this draft group. GM Roseman stated on more than one occasion since WENTZ was traded that HURTS will get a full shot to be their franchise QB, with VFA FLACCO the back up and tutor. Just weeks before the Draft, Owner Jeff Lurie reinforced that sentiment.
WASHINGTON Football Club
Round 1, Pick 19 ZAVEN COLLINS LB Tulsa
Round 2, Pick 51 JACKSON CARMAN OL Clemson
Round 3, Pick 74 DYAMI BROWN WR/RS UNC
Round 3, Pick 82 BARON BROWNING LB Ohio State
Round 4, Pick 124 TREVON GRIMES WR Florida
Round 5, Pick 163 MATT BUSHMAN TE BYU
Round 7, Pick 244 JOSHUAH BLEDSOE S Missouri
Round 7, Pick 246 THOMAS FLETCHER LS Alabama
RON RIVERA did a more than solid job last year in instilling some discipline and character into the Boys from D.C. both on the field and in the locker room. Part of me was whispering QB TRASK when their 2nd Round Pick came up, but they already have 4 legit QB’s to sort through on the current roster, so we’ll concede the starting job to the amazing VFA Mr. Fitzpatrick for now and see how it goes. The LB unit needed major help with THOMAS DAVIS retiring and most of their UFA group at LB moving on. So for me, it was a clear choice to load up at the position and do it with two of the most athletic LB’s in the Draft in COLLINS & BROWNING. Then it was a matter of getting them some new talent in their WR group to supplement their emerging star in TERRY McLAURIN. BROWN from UNC is a sure-handed, elusive receiver (and RS) that has nice size at 6’1/189. GRIMES in Round 4 gives them a long, solid athlete (6’4/217) that showed potential, especially as a red zone threat, and should be a very nice addition to their Special Teams units. I also like the potential of TE BUSHMAN, who would have gone higher than Round 5 were it not for some injury issues in recent years. If he stays healthy, he could be that No. 2 TE teams are always looking for in their 12-personnel grouping. CARMAN from Clemson is a large fellow (6’5/335) that was key to a solid Clemson OL the past 3 seasons. He’ll likely get a try out at OT, but if his arms are too short, he’ll make a fine inside road grader. I like the size and athleticism of this Draft group. To no one’s surprise, RIVERA is putting his fingerprints all over this team. And that’s a good thing, IMO!
Of their overall Picks, these teams included 7 players in my Top 50, with CARMAN just missing at #51. Looking at some of the names with Pick numbers from Day Three of the Draft, it is not hard to see how deep the talent goes this time around. If teams pick players that truly fit their system and schemes, the talent infusion could be considerable. These teams did just that for my money. Stay tuned for some likely feedback from Uncle Colin when he sees my Picks for his Giants.
Next up will be the AFC East.