The AFC North is always a competitive, entertaining, and dangerous division. For the past couple years, the Steelers have ruled the north. While it seems like that’ll be the case again this year, the Ravens and Bengals have legit chances at competing to win the division. While the Browns probably aren’t there yet, they made some moves in the right direction. The AFC North is always a crazy division, so even though it seems like the Steelers should win it, there’s a chance they don’t. If any team in the AFC North wants to win that tough division, they have to have a good draft. Let’s look at each teams best and worst picks!
Best Pick- Running back Nick Chubb
Browns are really re-working that offense. Chubb was a highly productive running back at Georgia. He finished last year with 1,345 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns. Chubb is also very tough. The end of his sophomore year, he tore some ligaments in his left knee. He came back the next year and played every game, but wasn’t quite who he was the year before. However, in his senior year, he dominated. He played like he never had that injury. This shows that he can overcome tough injuries. Browns got a very solid running back with Chubb. Even better, the Browns don’t need to fully rely on Chubb day one. He can learn behind Hyde and Johnson.
Worst Pick- Offensive Lineman Austin Corbett
Corbett played guard in college, but may have to play left tackle due to Joe Thomas retiring. If The Browns wanted to find a replacement at left tackle, than there was a better option in Connor Williams. Williams was a proven left tackle in college, and was just a better prospect overall. Corbett does have the versatility to play multiple positions on the line, and that’ll help him in the future. But for now, moving a rookie from guard to tackle could be dangerous. So the fact that they’re probably doing that, and had a chance to draft a better prospect, this just was not a very good pick.
Best Pick- Tight End Mark Andrews
Despite them going tight end Hayden Hurst in Round 1, the Mark Andrews pick makes perfect sense. Flacco LOVES his tight ends. Hurst and Andrews actually make a great tight end duo for Flacco. While Hurst will be that true tight end, Andrews will be more of a slot guy, which was his role at Oklahoma. With Flacco’s love for tight ends, having Andrews in that slot role is a best case scenario for Flacco. It’ll give Flacco a target he’ll be comfortable with. The Ravens did not have a real good target last year, but Andrews will tremendously help that offense.
Worst Pick- Center Bradley Bozeman
When you look at the Ravens draft, you really can’t criticize them. I don’t think Bozeman was a bad pick. He was a good anchor for the Alabama team. But when you look at Bozeman, you see a guy that has almost 0 athletic abilities. It’s not uncommon to see late round offensive lineman draft picks eventually start sometime in their career, but that’ll be hard for Bozeman to do. If you are not athletic, you won’t succeed on an NFL line.
Best Pick- Linebacker Malik Jefferson
The Bengals desperately needed an upgrade at linebacker. There was a lack of athleticism among the Bengals linebackers, and a ton of missed tackles. Jefferson is an athletic freak, and a tackling machine. Just what the Bengals needed. He’ll be a big factor in the Bengals defense while Burfict is suspended. If he can develop his instincts, he’ll be a great linebacker for years to come.
Worst Pick- Offensive Lineman Rod Taylor
Rod Taylor was drafted in the 7th round for a reason. His tape wasn’t really good, and he has been criticized for his attitude. He often gave up on plays, and just seemed like he didn’t want to be playing the great game of football. The Bengals offensive line last year was awful, but Taylor won’t help at all. His attitude is the last thing the Bengals need. New offensive line coach Frank Pollack has a great track record of finding talent, so maybe can find a way to use him properly, but that’s a big maybe. Unless the Bengals offensive line gets hit hard with injuries, Taylor likely won’t make the team. And unless he changes his attitude, he could have a short career.
Best Pick- Quarterback Mason Rudolph
Ben Roethlisberger can complain all he wants about this pick, but this was a really good pick. Roethlisberger has been very public about him considering retirement for years, so the fact he didn’t see this coming is pretty funny. Roethlisberger hasn’t been the most durable over the last couple years, so they also needed a solid backup. This pick just makes a lot of sense. Rudolph isn’t ready to start this year,but has potential to be a really good starter. So he can have time to develop into “that guy,” while Roethlisberger finishes up his career. There’s a lot that Rudolph needs to work on, but he fits the Steelers offense perfectly. He has a great deep ball, so when he gets his chance to shine, he has plenty of weapons to throw to.
Worst Pick- Safety Terrell Edmunds
This pick was simply a reach. The Steelers chose team need over value with pick 28. Most saw Edmunds as a 3rd rounder, or a late 2nd rounder at best. Steelers seemed to panic with the safety position, and took him. Luckily for Edmunds and the Steelers, Edmunds is a perfect match for the Steelers defense. Steelers needed a safety/linebacker hybrid player, and that’s what Edmunds is. However, Steelers did reach for him and was just not a good value pick.