Day two of the draft always conjures up surprises, and this year was no different. Some questionable picks were the order of the day, and even though they were expected, it didn’t lessen the shock value.
5 – The Jaylon Smith Selection
With the second round pick for the Dallas Cowboys, they selected Jaylon Smith, linebacker out of Notre Dame. Jaylon Smith is a supremely talented player, which is not the issue with the pick. The surprise is that the Cowboys used their second round pick on a player recovering from an ACL and PCL ligament tear. It is highly unlikely that Smith plays any part of the 2016 season, and while the Cowboys have him locked down, there is no telling how he returns from the injury.
4 – The 2nd Round Defensive Dominance
The likelihood of players being picked by teams is based on need, ability and what the team thinks of a player. With that being said the NFL is an offensive driven league. Records on that side of the ball seem to broken on a yearly basis, with no sign of this coming to an end. There is an old saying that defence wins championships, and this seems to be the thought process this year. Of the 32 second round picks last night 22 of them were used on defensive players. This may be a quarterback driven league, but defence is still the order of the day.
3 – The Fall and fall of the Franchise Back
Over the past few years, the running back by committee ideology is becoming the norm. Teams will regularly use certain Running Backs for certain situations, keeping their starter fresh and giving the opposition headaches. While this has meant that the franchise back label has become less important, teams still historically picked game changers early. No longer a first round lock, a Running Back could expect to go in round 2 or 3. Excluding Ezekiel Elliott in round 1, only 3 other running backs have been taken going into round 4. All these 3 have gone into a ball club that already has a starter. Even though the position is still incredibly important, it seems as if the franchise back is dead.
2 – The Alabama Redemption
This surprise is more about the fact that 5 players had to wait until round 2 until they were called. Having just won the national championship, many would think that the players coming into the draft would be at a premium. This was not the case for current champions Alabama, with only 1 player going in the first round. If Thursday was bad for Alabama, then Friday was a day of redemption. Five players went in round 2, with another going in round 3. All the players taken can and will make an immediate impact, the question is after winning the biggest game in college football, why weren’t they seen that way.
1 – The Trader, the Picker and the Kicker
If you have any idea what happened yesterday, then you knew what was coming here. So the elephant in the room is that the Buccaneers chose kicker Roberto Aguayo in the 2nd round. That in itself is a huge surprise, however as he is the most accurate kicker of all time in college football, he is still an asset. Some will say he is a reach, although if he wins games, no one will care. The surprise here though is that the Bucs traded back into the round, giving up a 4th round pick in order secure him. It is a huge price to pay for such an undervalued position. If however he can continue his accuracy, this might have been a stroke of genius.