Morning buzz

April 19, 2018

One week to go!!! … Just a week to go until the 2018 draft. Hang in there guys. And the actual draft can’t come soon enough as what looked like was going to be something of a cookie cutter opening round appears to be getting muddier by the day. There is a growing chorus around the league, for example, that Wyoming QB Josh Allen will be Cleveland’s choice with the first overall pick rather than USC’s Sam Darnold who has been the consensus favorite for the pick pretty much since the draft process started. At the same time, both the Browns, as well as the camp of Penn State RB Saquon Barkley, who many project to Cleveland with the 4th pick, are denying published reports that he does not want to play there. Meanwhile, there is also a growing buzz that the NY Jets are leaning toward Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield with the 3rd pick. In fact, it appears that all four AFC East teams have QBs on their mind. Of course, it has long been believed that Buffalo has been working the phones as hard as anybody to move up into the top 5 to get one of this year’s top prospects at the position, especially after the Bills traded incumbent starter Tyrod Taylor to Cleveland earlier this year. There is also a growing sense that New England would like to move up to find an eventual successor to Tom Brady, who reportedly has still not committed to playing even this fall. The Patriots currently have the 23rd and 31st picks in this year’s opening round, but like Buffalo who moved from 21 to 12 in a deal with Cincinnati earlier this year, the Patriots would likely have to move up closer to the top 10 before having any shot to get close to this year’s top prospects. Same for Miami as GM Chris Grier and VP Mike Tannenbaum were surprisingly open about the possibility of moving up in next week’s draft in their annual pre-draft presser yesterday. The Dolphins currently pick 11th and say they are committed to incumbent starter Ryan Tannehill, but Grier in particular had high praise for this year’s QB class saying that “the thing that’s impressive about the five or six guys you’re talking about is they’re all very smart and they played for coaches that have systems that some people may say are simple, but they’re asked to do a lot of stuff. Getting to know all of these guys is, they’re all very smart kids. They all have personality and they’ve all been successful. I think they all have a chance to be good players in the league. We were fortunate to spend a lot of time with each of them. We like them.” Stay tuned