A trade-filled first round of the 2019 NFL Draft was filled with surprises, elation, and disappointment for not only fans, but also the prospects. Here are the 10 best players still on the board for round two.
10. Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama
Both Iowa tight ends were taken in the first, but Smith was unable to give Alabama it’s fourth first-rounder in 2019. His receiving prowess and solid blocking ability should make him an early selection in the second.
9. Hakeem Butler, WR, Iowa State
Inconsistency and drops are why Butler wasn’t taken on Thursday, but his 6-foot-5 and 227-pound frame will lead one team to take the risk on him, hoping they can correct his issues and turn him into a Calvin Johnson-type player.
8. Dalton Risner, OT, Kansas State
Fewer offensive lineman went in the first round than expected, so that leaves some very solid players on the board for Friday. Risner may end up moving to guard, but he is a strong blocker with a mean streak who should be a fixture in an O-Line for a long time.
7. Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss
Little has the athleticism and footwork to be a good starter at tackle, but he needs to improve his hand technique and functional strength. He could benefit from sitting for a little while and developing further, but he could very well be the first offensive lineman drafted in the second round.
6. A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss
Brown falling out of the first was a surprise, as he has had a very good pre-draft process, putting up solid Combine numbers to back up his great production and tape. He may never be a dominant receiver, but he will be a very reliable target who can play the slot and the boundary equally well.
5. Byron Murphy, CB, Washington
Murphy fell due to subpar size, arm length, and speed. His film shows an excellent zone corner, but he could struggle against bigger and faster receivers if he doesn’t learn to overcome his physical disadvantages. He is still a very good player and should be taken early.
4. Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
Williams is a physical specimen of a corner, with a 6-foot-2 frame and 4.3 speed. He is fantastic in man coverage, but gives zero effort when tackling and has a general aversion to any form of physicality. Teams are obviously concerned, and it has led to a top-10 talent plummeting. Williams could become the best cornerback in the NFL, but the question is whether or not he really wants to be great.
3. Cody Ford, OL, Oklahoma
Ford seemed like a great trade-up target for the Atlanta Falcons, but they selected Kaleb McGary instead. Ford has played both guard and tackle, and will likely stay inside at the next level. It’s unclear as to why he fell so far, but there’s a pretty good chance the Arizona Cardinals decide to just take him with the first pick of the second round in order to improve their abysmal offensive line.
2. D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
Another Ole Miss product, Metcalf is similar in many ways to Butler, as he has great size, but struggled with drops and inconsistency. Where Metcalf differs is that he has 4.33 speed, a rarity at 6-foot-3 and 230 pounds. His pure talent makes him unlikely to fall too much further, as a team will fall in love with his measurables.
1. Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
Taylor had a decent shot at being a top-10 pick, but now finds himself still waiting to see who he will be playing for. Unlike the rest of the players on this list, Taylor’s fall is due to medical concerns, as checks at the Combine apparently discovered concerns with his knee and back. Taylor is a fantastic talent, but if his health issues are serious enough to drop him out of the first entirely, he could slide much further.