The NFL offseason is in full effect with the next item on the agenda being the 2016 NFL Draft. Here’s a rundown to get you caught up on the details and rumors surrounding the event later this month.
Round 1: Thursday, April 28, 8 p.m. EST
Rounds 2-3: Friday, April 29, 7 p.m. EST
Rounds 4-7: Saturday, April 30, 12 p.m. EST
Location: Chicago’s Auditorium Theatre in Chicago, Ill.
Are the Titans moving down?
There could be movement at the top of the draft with the Tennessee Titans reportedly seeking to trade their first overall pick because there’s no need to select a quarterback with the strong belief that Mississippi offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil will still be available a few spots later.
We’ve heard that a few other teams, such as the Cleveland Browns and San Francisco 49ers, are interested in selecting a quarterback. The Titans’ general manager Jon Robinson recently hinted that there’s a 50-50 chance of the team trading their pick, according to USA Today:
I would say that with each day we inch closer to the draft, the discussions probably become a little bit more serious, if you will. That’s something we’re going back and forth with. Do we stay put with where we’re at, or do we really entertain the thought of moving? I would say the interest has increased some. I wouldn’t say there are 31 teams calling, but there are certainly teams that have interest in moving up.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see the Titans move out of the first overall pick, but it may require a team to give up a big haul in return in order to get a deal done. However, it’s more likely that Tennessee stays put and takes Tunsil at the top spot.
Are the Eagles interested in Ezekiel Elliott?
As the draft nears, there’s a growing sense that the Philadelphia Eagles could use the eighth overall pick on former Ohio State standout running back Ezekiel Elliott. Since the team decided to deal Pro Bowler DeMarco Murray to the Titan two weeks ago, there have been rumors that the franchise is interested in the 20-year-old tail back.
This has only ramped up a notch this week, with Elliott stating that the Eagles are one of the three teams that he has a scheduled to visit within the coming days. The Dallas Cowboys had also been rumored to be interested in the Ohio State product, but could go in another direction by taking one of the top quarterbacks in the draft.
If so, Elliott could land with the Eagles, where he would have a prime opportunity to be the team’s featured back heading into his rookie campaign. Philadelphia would get this draft’s top running back, who is coming off an extremely successful collegiate career and a productive campaign in 2015, rushing for 1,821 yards with 23 rushing touchdown while making 27 catches for 206 receiving yards.
This helped Elliott earn the Graham-George Offensive Player of the Year and Ameche-Dayne Running Back of the Year and join the unanimous First Team All-Big Ten. Throughout his entire collegiate career, Elliott had 22 100-yard rushing games including five games with more than 200 rushing yards.
Are the Browns eyeing Carson Wentz for the No. 2 pick?
Over nearly the last two decades, the Cleveland Browns have been a distraught organization with 13 straight losing seasons and just one playoff appearance in the last 17 years, not to mention 24 different starting quarterbacks since the 1999 season. This didn’t prevent the front office from adding Robert Griffin III on a two-year deal via free agency, which gives them some stability at the quarterback position.
However, it appears that the franchise may still add another young quarterback to mix using their second overall selection in the draft. There has been reported interest in former North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz, who is presumed to be the top quarterback in the 2016 draft class. The Browns have already held a private workout with him and attended his Pro Day last month, which indicates that the team is leaning toward taking Wentz with their pick.
Griffin does give them some sort of game plan but the possible addition of Wentz shows that there isn’t a full commitment to the former Heisman winner as the long-term answer. All in all, it’s still a fuzzy situation in Cleveland, but the fact that the front office is heavily considering another quarterback could make the matter much more interesting.