It's time. Pro Football Weekly is here to give you our exclusive analysis of each pick of the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft.
Stay with us throughout the night as we give you thoughts on each team's first-round selection.
1: Kyler Murray - Cardinals. As if it was going to be anybody else? The Heisman Trophy winner, despite the small height, slight build and one year as a starter at Oklahoma, goes to new coach Kliff Kingsbury and the Cardinals. Arizona is betting its future on Murray, despite moving up a year ago to take Josh Rosen, who might be just as good of a fit in Kingsbury's offense.
Nevertheless, Murray is unquestionably a special athlete with a huge arm, speed, accuracy, mechanics, and touch with his passes. He's a special kid with unique talents. How they translate to the next level remains to be seen, but Murray makes the Cardinals more interesting for 2019.
2) Ohio State EDGE Nick Bosa — 49ers: Bosa looks to make the 49ers great again with his relentless pass rush off the edge. The 49ers desperately need all they can get in terms of a pass rush, and Bosa will be a plug-and-play starter from Day 1 with his speed, strength and technique all making him one of the top three prospects in this entire draft.
He’s not his brother, Chargers standout Joey Bosa - Nick is smaller and doesn’t carry as much bulk, but it’s hard to see how the younger Bosa doesn’t succeed in San Francisco. That's the on-field report. Off the field, Bosa is another story entirely.
How Bosa will be received in the locker room and by 49ers fans is an unanswered question. He has tweeted support for President Donald Trump, called former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick a "clown" and has reportedly followed social media accounts described as white nationalist profiles. He has deleted some of his over-the-line and overtly political tweets, telling ESPN he "might end up in San Francisco."
He's there now. Will his on-field performance speak louder than his off-field politics and views?
3) Quinnen Williams - Jets: Arguably the best player in the draft and the best player available, Williams immediately brings credibility to a Jets defensive line in need.
Our Greg Gabriel called Williams one of the best Alabama defensive prospects he's seen in years. Williams will stop the run, collapse the pocket and has done it all against top offenses despite consistent double teams.
Williams, with very few weaknesses, could be special.
Wow! Oakland addresses its greatest need … with our No. 5 EDGE rusher in this draft.
Ferrell is a stud who was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year last season and has proven production (50 career TFLs and 27 career sacks). But he tested like an ordinary athlete in the pre-draft process and doesn’t have the versatility of a Josh Allen or the imposing speed of a Montez Sweat or a Brian Burns.
What a fascinating decision as the first pick of the Jon Gruden-Mike Mayock era. It’s about as safe as it gets, but we think there’s a darn good chance they could’ve had him in the latter portion of the first round, especially with all of their draft capital to maneuver.
It's unclear whether this is a Mayock or Gruden special — Gruden certainly has final say — but we could see the general manager liking Ferrell's lunch-pail style but also can't ignore that's it's the second consecutive massive first-round reach for Oakland in as many drafts (Kolton Miller at No. 15 last year), which hints at Gruden's influence.
We liked this pick a lot more in our mocks when we assumed Josh Allen was off the board.
White will be a 21-year-old rookie and his productivity level is special, with 120 tackles in each of his final two seasons at LSU. This is a great fit for the Bucs, who need a linebacker that won't need to come off the field, tackles everything in sight, plays fundamentally sound football and is a smart, instinctive player.
Think Roquan Smith, but just a hair behind in terms of talent.
If Dave Gettleman loves his hog mollies, how should we describe his affinity for Daniel Jones, whom the Giants just identified as Eli Manning’s successor while Josh Allen, Ed Oliver and the top three offensive tackles were all on the board — not to mention QBs Dwayne Haskins and Drew Lock.
Look, we all knew Gettleman had eyes for Jones, a David Cutcliffe protégé, same as the Mannings. But what makes this stunning was the quality of the other prospects relative to Jones, our QB3 and a late-first-round type, not No. 6 overall.
Giants fans have spent the past year handwringing after Gettleman eschewed Sam Darnold and the three other first-round passers for Saquon Barkley. Now he has identified what he believes the future of the QB position holds for the Giants … and fans will still be up in arms that the pick wasn’t Lock, Haskins or even Josh Rosen, who is undoubtedly available at a bargain after the Cardinals picked Kyler Murray.
We like Jones. He has a lot of redeeming qualities that could translate to NFL success, from his mental aptitude to toughness to leadership skills. But he’s a clearly inferior QB prospect in our eyes to Haskins, and this is another pick that felt like it could’ve been made in the teens — after the Giants shored up their edges on either side of the ball.
Finally, Josh Allen is off the board. SEC offensive linemen hated going up against Allen, and he’s an elite rusher who will fit in well in Jacksonville’s system. He won’t be under immediate pressure to produce with Jacksonville’s defense, so he’ll have time to acclimate to the NFL.
The Jags got a steal with Allen falling to them.
Bob Quinn’s desire to fix his TE room, where he created a massive void with the premature ouster of Eric Ebron last offseason, was one of the NFL’s worst kept secrets. And Hockenson, now the NFL’s highest drafted tight end since Vernon Davis in 2006, can be a heck of a fix.
A rare two-way threat at the position, Hockenson will fit wonderfully in between field-stretching receivers Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay. He’ll give embattled QB Matthew Stafford and new OC Darrell Bevell a mismatch threat between the numbers but also a mauling blocker to aid the ascension of promising second-year feature back Kerryon Johnson.
Is No. 8 overall a bit rich for this position? Well, yeah. But the redshirt sophomore is a player on the rise with all the traits needed — and no apparent limitations — to become a star at the next level. We love the pick, which puts the Bears, Packers and Vikings linebackers and safeties on notice.
This one seems like a potential steal. Oliver is an athletic freak, a great fit for Sean McDermott’s defense and will be surrounded by the right staff/teammates to push him, alleviating some motivation issues.
He’s not Aaron Donald, but if he can even get within a whisper of Donald’s productivity, the Bills will take that and be thrilled.
Pittsburgh doesn’t make dramatic moves up in the first round of the draft often. As in, the last time they did so was way back in 2003, when a long-haired Samoan by the name of Troy Polamalu was the pick.
Fittingly, Bush brings the same kind of tenacity and swagger to the Steelers, who just solved perhaps their biggest defensive riddle — ably replacing Ryan Shazier. Like Shazier, he’s a huge presence in the middle of the field, which has been susceptible since the awful injury to the heart and soul of Pittsburgh’s ‘D.’
The cost to move up for Kevin Colbert was significant: Pick Nos. 20, 52 and a 2020 third-rounder. But we think it might be worth it, especially when we consider the massive drop-off at the position, where we don’t expect another pick until the middle of tomorrow night.
From the Broncos perspective, they probably saw the surprisingly slow movement at the OT position and have their eyes on either a blocker or perhaps Drew Lock or Dwayne Haskins. There’s an also an outside chance Denver could be eyeing corners with Chris Harris’ future with the club in doubt, but that’s a position with decent depth that could also be the target with their new second-rounder. The one curiuous part of this move for the Broncos is new HC Vic Fangio's role in the decision. A renowned LB teacher, did he sign off on passing on a rare talent like Bush? It'll be interesting to hear his thoughts.
Who cares about the short arms? Williams is one of the best natural offensive linemen in this draft. A brilliant technician with his hands. Whether or not he plays tackle or guard, he’ll help the Bengals offensive line.
We had the Bengals as one of the four best fits for Williams. The young man knows how to block, what else do you need?
If you needed any more evidence that Brian Gutekunst is a best-player-available drafter, not someone who targets needs, you shouldn't now. Remember, he double-dipped in Rounds 1-2 of his first draft at corner and went two-fer EDGE rusher in free agency.
Now, the enigmatic Gary joins a D-line with Kenny Clark and Mike Daniels, though the latter is a free agent after the season and Gary could be the long-range three-tech replacement. So that part we understand.
What we struggle to grasp is the disparity between Gary’s rare athleticism and his often bleh tape (10.5 career sacks and 24 TFLs). We also might have preferred the best remaining offensive tackle, Andre Dillard, in this spot. But Gary should arrive with a chip on his shoulder, and Mike Pettine is creative and hard-nosed enough to potentially squeeze the production from Gary that was too often missing in college.
Still, this is a bit rich for Gary, who was rumored to be a major draft faller, and it's unclear how much early production he'll be able to provide on an already much improved depth chart. We'll know more when we know Pettine's positional plan, but our Greg Gabriel maintains he should be unleashed as a havoc-wreaking under tackle, a role Daniels capably fills for now.
We suspected the ‘Phins, who appear to be punting on 2019, would punt here, moving back to gain more draft capital. Nonetheless, we have zero issues with this pick, which fills a considerable need on a perpetually soft run ‘D’ and gives Brian Flores a player who’ll help sheriff in the locker room from jump street.
Moreover, it says here we haven’t seen the best of Christian Wilkins as a pass rusher. He muddied pockets with regularity for Clemson but often ceded the sack production to Clelin Ferrell. That doesn’t mean he can’t do it. He has dancing bear qualities and the desire to be great. It might not be the sexiest pick, like Cincinnati taking Jonah Williams, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Lindstrom was a four-year starter for Boston College. He’s got good size, good technique, good reaction. He’s likely going to be a good offensive lineman for a very long time in the NFL.
We had a Round 2 grade on him, but mostly for little things. His speed isn’t great and he can get a little too deep in the backfield when he pulls.
Other than that, this appears to be a solid pick.
The only thing we don’t like about this pick? Owner Daniel Snyder imminently taking the credit for a purely fortuitous fall by Haskins. Everything else about is pretty much perfect. He’s immediately the most talented quarterback on the roster — yes, we’re including injured Alex Smith — and has the smarts to digest Jay Gruden’s offense and get on the field fairly early, if not in Week 1.
He might not have been the fit of a Daniel Jones, who is more of a rhythm thrower with better athleticism, but Haskins has the higher ceiling. He’ll also arrive with something to prove — did you see the footage of his reaction to his hometown Giants taking Jones at 6? — but won’t be rushed into the lineup sooner than he’s ready.
What Haskins desperately needs is weapons, and it would be pretty cool if Washington now appeases its new franchise guy who recently requested that his future team bring one of his Ohio State pass catchers with him in Parris Campbell, Terry McLaurin or Johnnie Dixon. Because the personnel on offense is very much a work in progress, and as magnificent as Haskins was in his lone year as the starter, he had all kinds of tremendous weapons.
The part of this we might never know is who banged the table for Haskins and who was squarely in the Jones camp. It doesn’t necessarily matter, but we can’t suddenly ignore all the leaks that emerged from Washington’s facility in recent days, when Snyder was reported to be taking over the Draft Room on Night 1. And there will be constant reminders with the two squaring off at least twice annually in the NFC East.
In the end, it won’t matter if Haskins realizes his potential, and if the organization’s dysfunction doesn’t hold him back, we think he will.
With 23 career sacks, Burns has the track record and productivity to be a very good edge rusher. Great bend off the edge, spectacular speed and has experience in coverage.
Does he have the power to be a consistently good rusher? His first step is great, and he reminds us a little bit of Leonard Floyd coming out of Georgia.
And there’s Gettleman’s “hog mollie.” Lawrence is a fascinating prospect because he didn’t rush the passer at Clemson but his athleticism screams pass-down disruptor stuck in a run-down body. Here’s what we know for sure: Lawrence is a massive presence vs. the run and should form an impenetrable tandem with Dalvin Tomlinson. We also know that Gettleman still needs help on his edges and followed up his reach at a premium position with an addition at an undervalued one.
The Giants have a lot of ammunition remaining and could still address both of their edges, but these decisions by Gettleman are curious, especially with Mississippi State’s Montez Sweat, Boston College’s Zach Allen and a few other pass rushers available.
The Vikings needed offensive line help in the worst way, and there were plenty available. Bradbury can play just about anywhere on the line and will provide immediate help.
Looking for a comp? Our Greg Gabriel says look at Olin Kreutz or Jason Kelce. High praise for the newest Viking.
Getting a top-five talent in the entire draft at 19 is good on its surface. But Simmons obviously is a longshot to play in 2019 after tearing his ACL in February, and this is very much a make-or-break year in Tennessee for a lot of people, no one more so than Marcus Mariota.
It also feels like Tennessee had bigger needs at pass rusher, wide receiver and arguably guard, so perhaps they got caught a bit off guard when Clelin Ferrell went really early and Garrett Bradbury and Chris Lindstrom went off the board in the five picks that preceded the Titans.
Simmons could form a special duo with Jurrell Casey once he’s ready to go. There’s also a lot to like about the fit — not only alongside Casey but covering up Tennessee’s strong second level headed by last year’s first-rounder, Rashaan Evans, and underrated Jayon Brown.
By now you’re likely aware of Simmons’ past legal troubles and the disturbing video of him striking a woman, another layer of this pick. Simmons has owned his mistake and by many accounts has successfullly turned over a new leaf. But we absolutely can't analyze this pick without mentioning it, especially on a night when the NFL's complicated DV history added an ugly new chapter with Tyreek Hill.
The second Iowa tight end off the board in the first round. An incredible blocking tight end, Fant is also a great route runner who creates separation with regularity. He’s going to create matchup problems in the AFC West.
It’s interesting that the Broncos did not take a QB at No. 10 (before they traded with Pittsburgh) or at No. 20. Joe Flacco has a weapon to throw to now, though.
Want to make Adrian Amos comfortable in his new home? Go out and get him an Eddie Jackson-like running mate with terrific coverage ability. Savage is an ascending prospect with elite athleticism and special instincts for the position. He fills up the stat sheet, running the alley with as much effectiveness as he is jumping routes near the line or lurking in short zones.
He’ll be an excellent chess piece on the back end for Mike Pettine at a position that the Packers have recently struggled to fill. As for the compensation, the Packers sent the 30th overall pick and a pair of fourth-rounders, which isn’t bad to move up nine spots, particularly with their remaining ammo.
The Seahawks’ desire to continue stockpiling picks after beginning the week with a league-low four was hardly a secret. And it makes sense considering they just paid Russell Wilson and have plenty of holes to fill as they reinvent themselves defensively and ensure Wilson’s cupboard remains stocked.
Dillard was one of the best offensive linemen in the draft, and the Eagles made a move to go up and grab him. Carson Wentz should be thrilled that Dillard will be protecting him.
Dillard is elite in pass protection, durable, and although he needs to get a little stronger, he should make an instant impact.
They can’t be pleased that the Eagles jumped in front of them for the best remaining offensive tackle — and perhaps the top pass protector in this draft — in Andre Dillard. But it says here that Howard can be an excellent consolation prize — assuming the Texans can afford to be patient with the converted quarterback out of Alabama State.
As Greg Gabriel wrote, Howard has as much upside as any player in the entire draft. That sounds like he could one day do justice in filling the spot that’s been a revolving door since Duane Brown’s trade. However, Deshaun Watson needs help, like, yesterday, and the Texans just drafted a project whom they’ll entrust with the safety of their franchise.
But keep in mind, the Texans have two picks in Round 2 and might not be done adding to their OL room, not with Jawaan Tayor and Cody Ford still on the board. Stay tuned.
The first running back (or wide receiver) to go in the first round of the 2019 draft, the Raiders take the Alabama standout. Jacobs has very little milage - only about 250 carries, which stands out as a major plus.
But the biggest plus for Jacobs is his strength. He’s a true power runner who doesn’t shy away from contact. Look for Jacobs to be much more involved in Oakland than he was in Alabama.
That said, a running back in the first round, when the Raiders have so many other needs? And this is the pick Oakland got for Khalil Mack. Not great.
Speed. Speed. And more speed. Brown, the cousin of Antonio Brown, is dynamic with the ball in his hands. He’s got experience as a returner and is good in 1-on-1 coverage.
With teams likely stacking the box against Lamar Jackson, Brown could be the perfect antidote to take the top off the defense, or as someone who could take a screen and take it to the house.
Washington traded up to get Sweat, who has top-15 talent but was reportedly diagnosed with a heart condition at the combine.
Sweat ran a 4.41 40-yard dash at the combine and had an incredible workout. A freak of an athlete with great pass-rush skills, Sweat could be a huge difference maker for the Washington defense that needs a pass rusher.
As for the Colts, GM Chris Ballard crushed the second round last year, so moving back to get Washington’s second round pick and a second round pick next year, in a draft that is supposed to have plenty of Round 2-graded players, looks like a smart move.
A box safety who can cover tight ends and slot receivers, Abram looks like the first Raiders pick of the night we find ourselves at least finding some real positives for the selection.
Abram is strong, has a great motor, and is an instant starter. He fits the modern NFL.
Tillery is one of those players that has gotten the “does he actually love the game” tag. On the tape, Tillery showed flashes during his time with the Fighting Irish with excellent size, speed and athleticism.
But he’s also had too many games where if he didn’t disappear, he was quiet in his production. He gets a little tall and loses leverage at times. There’s real upside with Tillery, but can he put it all together?
Collier has a great motor, and uses his hands well, but why he gets picked this high is perplexing.
Collier lacks the speed, quickness and explosiveness to succeed at this level, and why Seattle used a first-rounder on him is questionable.
Baker is the first cornerback off the board, and the Giants traded up with the Seahawks to get him. Baker is physical, confident, and sound in technique.
The problem with Baker’s physicality is that he can cross the line and get himself penalized often. At only 5-11, Baker will need to be elite in all other facets of his game to succeed.
Well, the Falcons are going to keep Matt Ryan upright, or at least spend all of their draft capital trying.
McGary has good natural size and power, great hands and is a durable lineman. He should fit in just fine in Atlanta.
The Patriots needed offensive weapons, and Harry is a pick we can get behind. He's got great hands, he's a strong route runner and a good blocker, too. Sounds like a good fit for the Patriots.