The 2017 NFL Draft class is locked and loaded with talent all across America. The Draft is an opportunity for teams to establish an identity, build on last year’s success, take that next step, or sustain success. There is still much to be decided with the NFL Combine, Pro Days, free agency, and other miscellaneous events that can help or hurt a prospect. Most teams draft players based off a team need, who is the best available, or use the pick as trade bait. As for now, these are the picks for each team in the first round by DeVaughn Townes and Chris Featherstone.
Team needs: QB, Interior OL, DB
Townes: Myles Garrett
Analysis: Garrett instantly bolsters the Browns pass rush and gives the fans a glimmer of hope. He had 31 sacks in his career, but he had 47 tackles for losses to show he is an all-around player.
2. San Francisco
Team needs: QB, OLB, OL
Feather: Jonathan Allen
Analysis: The biggest need is QB with Kyle Shanahan taking over. 2018 class is the class to snag a QB. Allen adds to a young passing core that already features Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner.
Team needs: QB, DB, OL
Townes: Mitch Trubisky
Analysis: The Bears get their franchise quarterback immediately and it sets the tone for how they draft the next two days.
Team needs: OL, DT, S
Feather: Malik Hooker
Analysis: The Jags could trade this pick to move down to snag an offensive lineman, as that is a reach at number four. Hooker would bolster the secondary and make the back end scary for years to come.
5. Tennessee (via Rams)
Team needs: CB, WR, ILB
Townes: Jamal Adams
Analysis: The Titans desperately need a consistent play-maker for super sophomore Marcus Mariota. How could they justify passing up on the do-it-all safety out of LSU? Adams would instantly become a franchise player defensively.
6. New York Jets
Team needs: QB, OLB, CB
Feather: Marshon Lattimore
Analysis: The best corner in the draft headed to the big apple to learn from the great Darrelle Revis. Having a talent like Lattimore to make an immediate impact and learn from one of the greatest to ever do it, boosts the poor Jets secondary from a season ago.
7. Los Angeles Chargers
Team needs: OT, WR, QB
Townes: Corey Davis/Trade
Analysis: This is a nightmare scenario for the Bolts with both Adams and Hooker gone. Davis presents an immediate jolt of production at wide receiver, but a trade may be warranted.
Team needs: OT, DE, RB
Feather: Leonard Fournette
Analysis: Rated the best running back prospect since the great Adrian Peterson, Fournette fills an immediate need if Jonathan Stewart is released.
Team needs: C, LB, Pass Rusher
Townes: Reuben Foster
Analysis: Age and health is a concern for the Bengals at linebacker. Foster is an instant upgrade in a division where you need tough linebackers with great instincts.
Team needs: OT, WR, DB
Feather: Mike Williams
Analysis: With Tyrod Taylor potentially set to depart from Buffalo, drafting a QB would be the ideal pick. However, majority of the foundation around Sammy Watkins is set to hit free agency and Williams would help Watkins tremendously.
11. New Orleans
Team needs: DB, LB
Townes: Sidney Jones
Analysis: Jones has the speed and height to stick the league’s best receivers. He has to add weight to deal with the physicality of the league as well as show up in the run game.
12. Cleveland (via Eagles)
Team needs: QB, Interior OL, DB
Feather: Deshaun Watson
Analysis: The Browns stay put at 12 as a dynamic quarterback falls to them. Watson would bring excitement to a dormant fanbase with his arm, legs, and charisma.
Team needs: QB, G, WR
Townes: DeShone Kizer
Analysis: With receivers Davis and Williams no longer on the board, Bruce Arians gets a young quarterback with oodles of talent. He has the arm to fit into the offensive scheme and add a few wrinkles with his legs.
Team needs: LB, OL, RB
Townes: Dalvin Cook
Analysis: Frank Gore ended the 1,000-yard back drought for Indy, but he is reaching his mid-30′s. Cook can be brought along slowly and will learn a lot from the veteran. His play-making in the passing game is just icing on the cake.
15. Philadelphia (via Vikings)
Team needs: CB, WR, RB
Feather: Cooper Kupp
Analysis: Kupp will be the pick at 14 to give Wentz a target, security blanket, and best friend when throwing. Kupp is a trustworthy receiver that runs precise routes, catches the ball with his hands, and has big play ability. Making Wentz comfortable is the key, and once the chemistry between the two is displayed, this combo will be deadly.
Team needs: WR, Pass Rusher, FS
Feather: Tim Williams
Analysis: Elvis Dumervil and Terrell Suggs continue to age as they combined for just 11 sacks in 2016. Williams compiled 18.5 sacks in the last two seasons for the Tide.
Team needs: DL, S, ILB
Townes: Solomon Thomas
Analysis: There is a lot of scrutiny toward Thomas because he is “position-less.” A better word would be versatile and in a 3-4 scheme he would be a handful based on match-ups each week.
Team needs: CB, ILB, WR
Feather: Quincy Wilson
Analysis: The most ready corner out of the 2017 crop is an immediate starter in Dick Lebeau’s defense. A great understanding of playing zone defense and an awesome man corner, there is nothing like having a complete corner that can bait a QB into throwing into his zone, or being alone on an island.
19. Tampa Bay
Team needs: DL, S, WR
Townes: Jabrill Peppers
Analysis: The Bucs defense could elevate tremendously with Peppers roaming the secondary. He would bring size, speed, and sheer power to the defense. He would be the equivalent to what Keanu Neal was to the Falcons.
Team needs: OT, G, TE
Feather: Ryan Ramczyk
Analysis: Khalil Mack, Justin Houston, and Joey Bosa all reside in the AFC West. This pick is a no-brainer.
Team needs: Pass Rusher, CB, LB
Townes: Jalen “Teez” Tabor
Analysis: There is a man named Aaron Rodgers who the Lions play twice a year. His flare for jumping routes could be an added bonus as he learns under Darius Slay.
Team needs: G, DE, LB
Feather: Zach Cunningham
Analysis: He is the old school sideline-to-sideline linebacker that the Dolphins really need. 30th in rushing is not going to cut it and this grown man is a complete linebacker that can play all three downs. With that being said, his pass coverage is extremely underrated.
23. New York Giants
Team needs: LB, RB, DT
Townes: Malik McDowell
Analysis: The Giants could use someone to help stuff the run. Although he is just 276 pounds, McDowell uses his height to his advantage as he fights off blocks and levels running backs.
Team needs: MLB, DT, CB
Feather: Jarrad Davis
Analysis: Ken Norton Jr. will love to have this weapon leading the charge with Khalil Mack on the defensive side of the ball. Filling a need at LB now would be the best bet. This pick will have the Raiders defense on track to look how they were supposed to look last season.
Team needs: QB, ILB, OL
Townes: Garrett Bolles
Analysis: The Texans have to build inside out on offense in order to have a formidable scheme. Bolles brings physicality to the table for a team that needs to establish the run.
Team needs: OT, DT, CB
Feather: Cam Robinson
Analysis: Rated at the high end of this draft class at the offensive tackle position, Robinson gives the Seahawks a much needed starter at the tackle position.
27. Kansas City
Team needs: ILB, DL, CB
Townes: Budda Baker
Analysis: This pick could change if the Chiefs re-sign Eric Berry. Baker would be a good addition with his speed and multi-faceted game.
Team needs: DE, CB, TE
Feather: Marlon Humphrey
Analysis: With Witten set to return, TE is not the teams biggest need. Corner is a position where the team struggled most. Ranked 27th in pass yards allowed, this position needs to be addressed immediately. Getting off the field more often, will let that offense take that next step toward greatness.
29. Green Bay
Team needs: CB, LB, Pass Rusher
Townes: Takkarist McKinley
Analysis: McKinley was extremely productive as the featured edge rusher for the Bruins with 18 TFLs and 10 sacks last season. Can he adjust to standing up as an OLB?
Team needs: LB, TE, RB
Feather: T.J. Watt
Analysis: A complete OLB that can wreck the backfield and cover, which will be a huge boost for this Pittsburgh Steelers defense. With James Harrison getting older, but also having the Benjamin Button syndrome, it is a huge question mark when he will retire. Having the insurance of Watt to learn from one of the great Pittsburgh Steelers, especially at the linebacker position in the Steel City is something to take advantage of.
Team needs: DT, CB, Pass Rusher
Townes: Derek Barnett
Analysis: Barnett would help Vic Beasley Jr. out tremendously as he accounted for nearly 50 percent of Atlanta’s sacks. He had 52 TFLs and 32 sacks as a Volunteer.
32. New England
Team needs: OT, LB, TE
Feather: Haason Reddick
Analysis: With the loss of Jamie Collins and Dont’a Hightower not yet locked up for the future, Reddick is a must draft for the Pats. He is a three down linebacker that is a bit undersized (6’2 240 pounds), but makes up for the lack of size with his aggressive style of play and ability to cover tight ends and backs that come out of the backfield.
Follow us on Twitter @playerinsiders. Follow Townes @realdt_ and Feather @stoney_montana_
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