Every team that picked in the first round Thursday will say they got their board’s top guy. And that they couldn’t believe he was still available. Some of this will be true Cheap Adrian Clayborn Jersey , and some of it false. Most of it will be a bit of both.
What always skews the equation is how a player fits his new team’s scheme. It’s not as simple as a team having a need at a position and finding a man who plays that position. It’s about how that man plays the position.
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The most fascinating illustration is the Panthers’ selection, eighth overall, of Stanford Swiss Army Knife Christian McCaffrey. GM Dave Gettleman will surely say McCaffrey was their top running back choice. Most likely, the top choice was actually LSU bruiser Leonard Fournette (taken fourth overall by Jacksonville).
Disclaimer: if McCaffrey turns out to be a transcendent NFL talent, then these next few paragraphs will be rendered moot. But truly transcendent talents rarely come around. If McCaffrey winds up just being a versatile Cheap Vincent Valentine Jersey , dynamic weapon like many scouts expect, then there’s a fascinating disconnect with him in Carolina.
Players like McCaffrey, who can line up anywhere and are most dangerous in space, are built for spread offenses that are predicated on quick-timed passing games. Think Darren Sproles or Randall Cobb. The reason for this is that the mismatches the running back creates by flexing to receiver often reveals the coverage before the snap. That information is what helps the QB get the ball out quickly.
The Panthers can’t run a quick-strike passing game. That system demands precise ball-placement and timing. Cam Newton is not that type of quarterback. He’s a deep-dropback power thrower.
The Panthers know this. Not only have they built a passing game on deep dropbacks, they’ve also acquired big, methodical receivers for Newton (Kelvin Benjamin, first round in 2014; Devin Funchess, second round in 2015; Greg Olsen via trade in 2011). They haven’t selected the Sproles or Cobb type players because those guys don’t fit Newton or the scheme.
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McCaffrey is a greater talent than Sproles or Cobb, but the point is that stylistically Cheap Trey Flowers Jersey , he’s cut from their cloth. To maximize McCaffrey’s value, the Panthers must tweak their scheme in ways it can’t be tweaked. You don’t just install a bunch of quick-strike throws and execute them on Sunday. Those plays must be your foundation. They must be practiced repeatedly. And they must be executed by a precise quarterback and quicker skill position players. McCaffrey is Carolina’s only quick skill player. Essentially he’s a sports car that’s about to go off-roading with a fleet of trucks.
The good news is McCaffrey’s shiftiness will work well behind the moving pieces of Carolina’s run-blocking. And as a checkdown receiver, he has the potential to conjure extra yards. But make no mistake: McCaffrey became a top-10 prospect because of his ability to line up anywhere and create in space. There won’t be natural opportunities for that in Carolina.
And now, for my quick analysis of every pick in round 1:
* * *
1. Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
Congratulations Browns, you did the right thing. Instead of reaching for your 27th different starting quarterback since 1999, you took the edge rusher you needed in the worst of ways. Even better, you got the highest regarded one to enter the league since Von Miller (2011). An explosive edge force is the fastest way to change the profile of your defense; Garrett forces the offense to play on your schedule. This also makes the Browns’ 2016 picks better; Emmanuel Ogbah (drafted 32nd overall) can now play defensive tackle in nickel Cheap Tom Brady Jersey , where he’s better suited, and Carl Nassib (65th overall) will have the option to align inside or outside.
2. Chicago Bears: Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina
(The Bears traded the third, 67th and 111th overall picks in 2017 and a third-round pick in 2018 to San Francisco.)
Talk about a roll of the dice. Not only did the Bears turn their backs on what we (and maybe they?) thought would be their quarterback beyond 2017, Mike Glennon, but they traded a boatload of picks to get a guy riddled with question marks. After sitting for most of his first two years at North Carolina, Trubisky might sit for his first season in the NFL. Whenever he does get on the field, he’ll be asked to run a quick-strike offense that uses a lot of three-receiver sets. That presents similarities to what he ran at UNC but [url=http://www.authenticnewenglandpatriots.com/cheap-tedy-bruschi-jersey]Cheap Tedy Bruschi Jersey[/url] , like with almost any NFL offense, he’ll have to make a greater number of decisive throws inside. Aiding his efforts: the Bears have a very strong zone running game.
3. San Francisco 49ers: Solomon Thomas, DT, Stanford
Where will Thomas play? The Niners are installing a 4-3 zone defense and already have a pair of quality young interior pass rushers in DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead. Thomas can rush off the edge, but he’s only worth a No. 3 pick because of his ability in confined areas. There’s time for head coach Kyle Shanahan and defensive coordinator Robert Saleh .