The NFL Draft is less than a week away, and teams are finishing off their boards and preparing for one of the busiest weeks of the year. Trade talks are heating up by the hour and front office phones are ringing by the minute. Of course every team would like to strike gold in the upcoming draft, but there are three teams that desperately need to come up big in Philadelphia on April 27.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but the Browns are under more pressure than any other team in the league in this year’s draft. With the first and 12th pick in the NFL Draft, the odds of Cleveland having a successful night are good right?
Think again. Cleveland has had multiple draft picks in the first round three out of the last four years.
In 2014, the Browns drafted Justin Gilbert (8th pick) and Johnny Manziel (22nd pick) with their two first rounders. Both are no longer on the team.
In 2015, the Browns selected Danny Shelton (12th pick) and Cameron Erving (19th pick) in the first round.
After such a successful offseason where the Browns bolstered their offensive line with center J.C. Tretter and guard Kevin Zeitler, it would be a crushing blow for them to come up empty in the draft yet again. The Browns have made it clear that they’re done being the laughingstock of the league, which is why they need to find impact players this draft.
New Orleans Saints
It’s no secret that the Saints have possessed arguably the worst defense in the NFL for the last couple of seasons. Not only that, but Drew Brees and Sean Payton are not getting any younger.
New Orleans will not be in rebuild mode with a Hall of Fame caliber quarterback, which means they need to do well with their multiple first-round picks.
The biggest move of the offseason for New Orleans had to be their trade with New England that sent Brandin Cooks and a fourth-round pick to the Patriots for the 32nd overall pick and their third round pick.
Trading away such a productive player like Cooks has opened up many paths for the draft. The Saints can go strictly defense in the first round or they can possibly make a trade to acquire Malcolm Butler.
The Super Bowl window might already be closed, but if there is any chance of them coming close, they need to improve their horrific defense.
It’s been said for years that defense wins championships. Well, the Houston Texans would disagree, because it is clear that the one position holding the team down is their quarterback.
After a four-year, $72 million deal with Brock Osweiler failed, the Texans traded him along with a 2018 second-round pick just to get rid of his contract.
The keys to the offense were handed over to Tom Savage, but can he be the guy to take Houston to perhaps the AFC Championship game?
If Savage isn’t the answer, then the Texans should strongly consider taking a quarterback with their first-round selection (25th pick). The Texans had the top ranked defense during the 2016 season, even without J.J. Watt.
Their roster is too talented to not make a possible Super Bowl run this season. If they see a young quarterback worth drafting like Patrick Mahomes II or DeShone Kizer, then they have to take a shot at them. There is so much at stake for Houston in this upcoming draft, as they try to inch closer to becoming more of a contender than just a solid team.
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