The NFL draft was over nearly a month ago. Now that the hype has cooled, let’s take a look at each teams best and worst picks, starting with the NFC South.
Best Pick- Defensive Tackle Deadrin Senat
Falcons obviously needed a defensive tackle, as they lost Dontari Poe in free agency. Instead of reaching for a defensive tackle in the rounds 1 & 2, the Falcons waited for one that was not a reach. Senat recorded 178 tackles, 23.5 tackles for loss, and 7 and a half sacks in his college career. He fits the Falcons 4-3 defensive scheme, and he fills the void at the nose tackle position. Senat in the 3rd-round was a perfect situation for the Falcons.
Worst pick- Wide Receiver Russell Gage
Drafting Gage was confusing. With much needed depth on the offensive line, they went wide receiver for the 2nd time in the draft. Gage is a very raw prospect. He’s only had 26 receptions in the past two years. Gage is only 6’0 weighing in at 180 lbs. Gage will have a hard time fitting in with a very talented Falcons offense.
New Orleans Saints
Best Pick- Center/Guard Will Clapp
Clapp was great value in the 7th-round for the Saints. Clapp started at multiple positions on the offensive line for LSU last year. You can expect Clapp to play both guard and center for the Saints.
Worst pick- Defensive End Marcus Davenport
There’s nothing wrong with Davenport; it’s what the Saints had to do to trade up for Davenport. The Saints traded away the 27th pick they originally had, their 5th-round pick, and their 2019 1st-round pick. That is a lot of draft capital to lose for a very raw defensive end. Usually when you trade up that much, you trade up for a quarterback. So the fact they gave up that much for a defensive end is very confusing, especially when a high upside quarterback in Lamar Jackson was on the board. As I mentioned, Davenport is very raw. But his upside is tremendous. Davenport will likely be a great defensive end, this is a bad pick because of how much the Saints traded up.
Best Pick- Tight End Ian Thomas
Thanks to injuries, Thomas wasn’t very productive at Indiana. Thomas is a very raw player, but has a lot of upside, he also has pretty good hands and athleticism. He’s really good at running through contact on routes. Thomas will learn a lot from the Panther star tight end, Greg Olsen.
Worst pick- Safety Rahsaan Gaulden
It was no secret that the Panthers needed a safety, as they lost Kurt Coleman to the Saints after the Panthers released him. Gaulden is best known for flipping off the Alabama student section after Tennessee scored on defense. Gaulden seemed like a panic pick, as most NFL analysts projected him in the 4th-round. Gaulden played mostly slot at Tennessee, so him playing more safety with Panthers might not help his production. He also only ran a 4.61 at the NFL combine.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Best Pick- Cornerback Carlton Davis
Despite just drafting MJ Stewart, the Buccaneers draft another corner in Davis. Davis has a nice frame of 6’1, 206 lbs. He has great ball skills, and is great in pressing. He’s a tough player, as he fought through injuries his sophomore year. Davis will have an early impact on the Buccaneers’ defense.
Worst pick- Safety Jordan Whitehead
The Buccaneers took Whitehead in the 4th, even though many saw him going in rounds 5 or 6. He’s an undersized safety, so it’ll be hard for him to play at the line of scrimmage. Whitehead really hasn’t developed instincts, yet. He made a lot of mental mistakes last year; he guessed a lot. He also struggles against play action. Whitehead will be a developmental player.