NFL Draft brings new talent for 2019

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NFL Draft brings new talent for 2019

Maxwell W. '20, Writer

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On April 25, the first round of the NFL draft will take place in Nashville, Tennessee for the first time. Recent locations have been Philadelphia in 2017 and Dallas in 2018. Since 1936, the NFL draft has been a main attraction for college football stars. Through history, first -round players have been Barry Sanders, Lawrence Taylor, John Elway, Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice. All these players had great careers in the NFL, and won multiple Super Bowl rings and titles.  Now, there is a new era for the NFL.

Prospects have produced different headlines for this draft. One prominent topic of the draft is about former Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray. Murray, who is 5 feet, 10 inches, transferred from Texas A&M in 2016 to attend Oklahoma starting in the fall of 2017. He played under new head coach Lincoln Riley and a high powered offense. In his junior season, Murray threw for 4,361 yards with 42 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He went on to win the Heisman Trophy for college football’s most outstanding player. However, he still has flaws in his game. According to sportsday.com, the main downfall for Murray is his lack of size. Because he is only five feet tall, scouts are concerned Murray can not survey the field as precisely as a a six-  foot quarterback. Another factor about his height problem is his development as a true pocket passer. While at Oklahoma, Murray made a massive amount of plays with his legs, running for over 1,000 yards. However, scouts questioned if he can continue to be dual threat quarterback  at the next level, especially with 220 pound or more defensive linemen attacking Murray from the outside. Despite the different amount of positive and negative comments about Murray’s game, he is projected to be the No.1 pick in this draft by the Arizona Cardinals according to nfl.com. The Cardinals recently hired former Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury as their head coach.  Kingsbury knows Murray extremely well being a part of the Big 12 conference and through other relations. Additionally the Cardinals traded last year’s starting quarterback Josh Rosen to the Washington Redskins making room for Murray.

“ I think the draft has a massive amount of defensice and offensive stars. I predict Josh Allen, Nick Bosa and Dwayne Haskins will be high draft picks in this year’s draft,” Garrett Z. ‘21 said.

Another important draft story is the emergence of Ole Miss wide receiver D.K. Metcalf. Before the NFL combine in Indianapolis, little knew about Metcalf, as he only had 26 receptions for 569 yards in his sophomore year. Unlike Murray, scouts would look at these stats as average. However,  at the combine, Metcalf ran a 4.33 second 40 yard dash, which was the third fastest this year. He also bench pressed 27 reps of 225 pounds, had a vertical jump of 40.5 inches and had a broad jump of 11 inches. All of these stats were in the top five for wide receivers at the combine. With this performance, Metcalf has risen from being a projcetd third round pick  to mid first round pick. NFL .com predicts Metcalf will be the 16th pick to the New York Giants.

“I predict that Bosa and Haskins will be great picks for this year’s draft. I like Bosa’s use of his hands and his speed around the corner. For Haskins, I think he is the right fit for any NFL team,” Dean Of Students Brad Henry said.

The final piece of news for this draft is the amount of defensive linemen expected to be  drafted in the first round. According to nfl.com, they project 13 defensive linemen prospects to be taken in the first round. These include Nick Bosa, Quinnen Williams, Josh Allen, Rashan Gary and Montez Sweat who ran a 4.41 second 40- yard dash, becoming the fastest defensive lineman to run in this evernt since 2003. From this list, the most improved or talked about player from NFL scouts is Bosa. Bosa, who is brothers with former Ohio State Buckeye Joey Bosa, is projected to be drafted No.2 overall to the San Francisco 49ers. The team said they desperately needed a new edge rusher on defense alongside newly signed free agent Dee Ford. Scouts admire Bosa’s use of his hands and his ability to shed blocks quickly makes him a great pick. However, early last season, Bosa injured one of his core muscles during a game against Texas Christian University. People are concerned if Bosa can sustain a full season in the NFL and not have the fear of injuries affecting his career.

“ I think the best prosepct for this year’s draft is  Quinnen Williams, defensive tackle from Alabama. As for Murray deciding football over baseball, I think he needed to follow his heart and choose what was best for him,” Kayla P. ’20 said.

This draft in Nashville has a wide variety of athletes. From Murray, Bosa, Dwayne Haskins, Allen, Ed Oliver and Drew Lock, this draft is loaded with talent on both sides of the field. Tune in on April 25-27 to ABC at 8 pm to watch full analysis, higlights and picks of the 2019 NFL draft.