Every year, I throw myself down a flight of stairs in an attempt to give my opinion on the NFL draft. There is obviously no way to be 100 percent accurate with your predictions, but sometimes I am egregiously bad! Sometimes I’m right, but people aren’t interested in that so much. As is a yearly tradition, i’m going to go over the stuff I got wrong last year, with the occasional sprinkling of stuff I got right. Actually, screw you guys! I’m leading off with what I got right. Don’t like it, go start your own website you human merkin!
What I got right: The Bears were dumb to draft Cole Kmet.
Oh man, the halcyon days of 2020 when the Bears tried to corner the market on tight ends! A month before the draft, the Bears spent big money on that human statue Jimmy Graham. They had seven other tight ends on the roster at the time. The Bears had a ton of pressing needs, especially on the offensive line and at safety. So they did the obvious thing.
They drafted a tight end. They drafted the best tight end in a draft when there wasn’t a high end talent at the position in the draft. Kmet might turn out to be a very good player. That said, tight ends don’t just randomly step on the field and play well. It is one of the most complicated positions in the game, having to know both blocking and route packages. So what happened?
Cole Kmet averaged less than two receptions per game. He was a non factor on offense. In a season where the Bears desperately needed to hit on that pick, and they chose a developmental player. Who did I want? The starting safety for the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Antoine Winfield Jr. He has been good practically since day one. Him and Eddie Jackson would have been a dynamic duo that could shut down opposing teams all over the field.
What I got wrong: I really thought Justin Herbert was going to suck.
Yep, I got this one wrong. Joe Burrow was great, too before his torn ACL ended his season, but Herbert was an absolute monster the moment he stepped on the field. It’s kind of incredible to think about the circumstances that led to him getting on the field. If you remember, Completely unannounced, Tyrod Taylor didn’t come onto the field before the game and Herbert was named the starter. It turned out that Taylor had accidently gotten his lung punctured when a team doctor was trying to administer a pain killer shot into his side.
Herbert then went full meteor blazing across the sky. He completed 2/3 of his passes. Had 31 touchdowns, and threw for 4300 yards. Truly an impressive feat for a team that couldn’t stay healthy anywhere, including the offensive line. If the Chargers want to keep what they have (and also, how lucky do you have to be to go from Drew Brees to Philip Rivers to Justin Herbert. How this team has never even made a Super Bowl in the past twenty years is frankly stunning) then they are going to have to heavily invest in keeping Herbert healthy.
What I got right and wrong: Deandre Swift wasn’t the right pick for the Detroit Lions.
Last year, I said it was a bad move because the Lions had an absolute trainwreck of a defense and they needed to invest in that. I was correct about that. I was incorrect about thinking that Kerryon Johnson was good enough and didn’t need to be upgraded. I was definitely wrong about that. I drafted Kerryon Johnson in a few fantasy leagues last year. He was dumpy when he got on the field, and at various points, both guys lost carries to noted relic Adrian Peterson.
Swift was good. He made a spectacular drop to lose a game against the Bears. But he hit a wall eventually and ceded his role as primary back. In a draft where the running backs who tied for fifth place in rushing yards last season came in the 3rd round (David Montgomery) and undrafted (James Robinson), over drafting a running back who can’t be a primary rusher instead of addressing your defense is a bad look.
What I got wrong: Jameis Winston will sign with the Steelers and lead them to the AFC Championship game.
I was wrong, but I really should have been right. Mason Rudolph is a terrible quarterback and Ben Roethlisberger has gotten so big that he has two small moons orbiting him at all times. The defense was great last year, but they couldn’t recover from the injuries because the offense was being run by a guy shaped like me. The Steelers went penthouse to outhouse stunningly quickly last year. Jameis, if nothing else, would not have been afraid to huck the ball sixty yards downfield and let James Washington, Juju Smith Shuster and Chase Claypool run underneath it.
What I got right: Chase Young will be an absolute monster from day one.
This is pretty self explanatory. He was the best defensive player in the draft. He stepped into Ron Rivera’s defense in Washington and was an absolute beast. This isn’t even a “got it right” thing. If you didn’t think Chase Young was going to be awesome, then your football thoughts are bad and you should probably shove your dong into a light socket.
COMING WEDNESDAY: I MAKE MY PREDICTIONS THAT WILL BLOW UP IN MY FACE. ON THURSDAY AND FRIDAY, ILL BE LIVE BLOGGING THE FIRST ROUNDS OF THE DRAFT.