If you’ve read the Sports are from Venus Mock Drafts, you know that I place a high premium on team needs in the draft. These grades will reflect how well I think each team has done in addressing their weak spots. Next up…
2020 NFC East
1st Round: 17 CeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
2nd Round: 51 Trevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
3rd Round: 82 Neville Gallimore, DT, Oklahoma
Sometimes, it’s better to be lucky than good. It’s even better to be smart enough to realize when you’ve gotten lucky, which happened in each of the first two rounds for Dallas. Not many mock drafts had Lamb sliding to the back half of the first round, and Dallas was smart to drop whatever plan they had to get him. Yes, he’s similar to Amari Cooper, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing scheme-wise. Grabbing Diggs in round two will feel like a bit of a steal, and Neville Gallimore is a great player who fell to round three because he’s ever-so-slightly undersized. He can still create problems in the backfield and will feel like value.
Grade: A-. Maybe not a draft that filled glaring holes for a Cowboys team that underperformed in 2019, but when faced with super solid value picks, they didn’t flinch. The Cowboys should be better next season.
New York Giants
1st Round: 4 Andrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
2nd Round: 36 Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama
3rd Round: 99 Matt Pearl, OT, UConn
Not going to lie. I did not like the Giants strategy here, but I can sort of understand it. If I was making picks here, I’m taking a generational defensive player here to help that 30th ranked defense, then grabbing the best wide receiver I can in the second round. But New York used two of their first three picks on offensive linemen, which seems like overkill for a team starving for defensive power and skill guys. Andrew Thomas will be good. So will Xavier McKinney, but they had the chance to contend in the division and I think they might have blown it.
Grade: D. Mostly because they left both Isaiah Simmons and Derrick Brown on the board. I can’t see doing that when your defense is among the league’s worst.
1st Round: 21 Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU
2nd Round: 53 Jalen Hurts, QB, Oklahoma
3rd Round: 103 Davion Taylor, LB, Colorado
The eagles suffered from a lack of pop on offense last season. Jalen Reagor and newly acquired Marquise Goodwin will change all of that for Carson Wentz. That’s some new horsepower. I don’t love that they didn’t grab a corner early, but I can certainly understand worrying about Wentz’s durability, and Hurts isn’t a bad guy to groom behind him. Taylor is a new school linebacker with blazing speed for his size. He’s a former track star who’s pretty new to the game, so there’s some rawness in his technique and play reading, but the talent is there and he’ll be able to contribute on special teams immediately if he needs some time to become an every down backer.
Grade: B-. The receiver situation had to improve. It did. They needed a backup for Wentz. They got one, even if 53 overall seemed a little early for Hurts. If Taylor becomes a solid piece for the Eagles defense, this draft is a win.
1st Round: 2 Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State
3rd Round: 66 Antonio Gibson, RB/WR, Memphis
Chase Young is a win for Washington. No question. They had no second rounder this year, as they used that pick to move up in the 2019 draft to grab Montez Sweat, who recorded 7 sacks his rookie year. Young is on a whole other level. The two of them in tandem will wreak havoc in the NFC East for years. Young recorded 16.5 sacks in his final year at Ohio State, but he’s not at his ceiling. There’s plenty of room for him to improve in the pro game.
Antonio Gibson was Memphis’ Swiss Army knife on offense, and who knows how teams at the next level will look to deploy the Memphis touchdown machine. Dude had fourteen touchdowns on only seventy-seven touches last year. That a score every six times he came into contact with a football…and half of those came on plays of forty yards or more. Talk about a gamebreaker. Running back, wideout, returner. Say what you want, this is a just good pick.
Grade: A-. I can’t argue with the team that took the single best player in the draft. Young can be an all-timer, and Washington will continue to improve if they make smart decisions like these.
For more thoughts and opinions from Tom, check out his author page.