Five Worst Value Picks of Day 1
Not everyone can be a winner. In our eyes some teams just don’t get it right with their draft selections and while only time can prove if they were right, we’re still going to call them out on it now.
In our eyes winning the draft is about finding value. Getting a guy others have ignored or getting in ahead of guys who are going after the guy you know will make you better. So with that in mind we’re going to bring you our five picks from the first round that we think offered the least value.
Washington Redskins, Brandon Scherff
Scherff has a lot going for him. He’s got tremendous skills of recognition, is extremely polished and can play 80% of the positions on the line (heck he’d probably give center a fair old go if you pushed him into it). But he was the fifth overall pick and I don’t want a jack of all trades who will be a good pro, I want a master of his art that will be a great player. I see a lot in Scherff but I’m not sure, at tackle or guard, that I see a guy who will reach that level.
My concerns with him as a tackle are how he’ll handle speed rushers. He has some edge fear in him because if a speedster gets a good get off he struggles to mirror like he did against Wisconsin and Joe Schobert. As a guard I love his nasty demeanor, his violent punch on contact and his fantastic ability to get to and win at the second level but I worry about his ability to sustain blocks. He didn’t show a consistent ability to sustain on reach blocks which worries me for a guy who played chiefly in a zone system.
Of course this may all be down to injury. Or it may not. Washington has found a guy who will log a lot of starts, but can he be the Pro Bowler this pick demands he be?
Minnesota Vikings, Trae Waynes
Mike Zimmer is a guy who has a lot of experience of working with young and talented cornerbacks. And there’s no denying Waynes is a young and talented cornerback. But is he even the best cornerback in this, a questionable CB draft? The Vikings did have a need at the position with Captain Munnerlyn somewhat underwhelming and it’s a good landing spot for Waynes who won’t necessarily be rushed into something he’s not ready for.
But would the Vikings have been better getting their franchise quarterback some help at a wide receiver position that offered better value? Sure Waynes has top-end speed and can shut down anything over the top with his recovery skills (he only allowed a 21.8 QB rating on throws over 20 yards in the air) but does he have the complete skillset to warrant this pick? Big concerns over his change of direction ability showed up as he tended to struggle on intermediate throws and routes that took him over the middle of the field.
San Francisco 49ers, Arik Armstead
There’s no denying the need here with the 49ers suddenly having holes everywhere on the defense and none more so on defensive line. Even if Justin Smith opts to stay on for another year it’s just delaying replacing him for a year, so at least with Armstead on board you could ease him into things.
So it’s a need fit but we just can’t see the value. His size is the most impressive thing about him because when you put on the tape it’s all too often not pretty. As a pass rusher he’s sporadic at best with only 26 combined sacks, hits and hurries and his work against the run was nowhere near the level that would scream first rounder. Against Power-5 teams he had the 17th-best overall grade for interior defenders and is every bit the project his general ganager described him as.
Sometimes projects work out and sometimes you lose interest halfway through when you realize he just doesn’t have it. Eyes will be on Armstead the next few years.
Pittsburgh Steelers, Bud Dupree
While we can at least content ourselves he didn’t go in the Top 10 we’re still a little miffed at the Steelers going linebacker again in the first round. Especially when the player has tape of a guy that might be a Day 2 pick at best.
Dupree has all the measurables in the world. A truly elite athlete who a coach would love to get his hands on. But an athlete does not a football player make and for all his workout numbers there are big red flags about why he wasn’t more productive. Indeed if you go through who he beat for his production at Kentucky you’re looking at tackles who won’t be making their way to the NFL any time soon.
Projects are fine but given the value of rookies contracts we’d want to squeeze every dollar out of them from day one, rather than picking up a guy who had a lower production grade than 22 other draft eligible edge defenders.
Indianapolis Colts, Philip Dorsett
A big favorite of Cris Collinsworth and a man who brings scary speed to the table. But it still feels a little high for a guy who didn’t produce more in college, though admittedly his quarterback needs to take a lot of the blame for that.
While on the right team, Dorsett might represent more value here, the concern is how many weapons the Colts now have at wide receiver meaning they’d likely have got better addressing a more glaring weakness rather than stacking up at their deepest position. They’ve got T.Y. Hilton, Andre Johnson and Donte Moncrief for starters at wideout and the duo of Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener at tight end. Not to mention they want to run the ball more.
So Dorsett might make some highlight reel plays, or he might be pressed out of the play, but before all that he’s going to have to find himself some playing time.
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