Vikings HC Mike Zimmer spent time with Michigan State DL Malik McDowell before the NFL Draft, and ESPN's Ben Goessling posits that McDowell could be a target for Minnesota in Round 2.
With Sharrif Floyd's status uncertain, the Vikings could use a defensive tackle. McDowell, who has top-10 talent but character concerns, is a boom-or-bust prospect who Zimmer may feel he can reach. The Vikings' first choice of the draft comes at No. 48 overall, and they also have two picks in the third round at No. 79 and No. 86 overall. With RB, OL and S also needs spots -- particularly RB and OL -- Goessling tosses out the following potential targets: WKU G Forrest Lamp, Temple G Dion Dawkins, Oklahoma RB Joe Mixon, FSU RB Dalvin Cook, Tennessee RB Alvin Kamara, Alabama T Cam Robinson and Washington S Budda Baker.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports that Notre Dame QB DeShone Kizer is "in play" for the Packers at No. 33.
The Packers traded out of the first round on Day 1, shipping their No. 29 pick to the Browns (who selected Miami TE David Njoku). They will be picking at the top of the second round come the start of Day 2 on Friday night. According to Rapoport, Green Bay is "getting calls" regarding that No. 33 pick and could potentially move back again, but should they decide to stay put, Kizer looks to be a possible developmental quarterback option who would have the luxury of learning on the bench behind Aaron Rodgers.
Saints selected Wisconsin OT Ryan Ramczyk with the No. 32 overall pick of the 2017 NFL draft.
Ramczyk (6’6/310) spent one season in Madison after transferring from UW-Stevens Point, starting all 14 games at left tackle and earning first-team All-America with just one sack and eight QB pressures allowed. PFF College gave Ramczyk its highest run-blocking grade among FBS tackles. Country strong and athletic, Ramczyk looks the part of a long-term left tackle with adequate arm length (33 ¾") and plus movement for his size. Ramczyk’s concerns are his one-year sample of high-level college football and recovery from January hip surgery, which prevented him from testing before the draft.
49ers selected Alabama ILB Reuben Foster with the No. 31 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.
The 49ers were said to be considering Foster as high as No. 2 overall, and he was expected to be a top-of-the-round pick but medical and off-field concerns put Foster in a draft-night slide. Foster (6’0/229) earned the 2016 Butkus Award as college football’s top linebacker, wrapping his four-year career with 24 tackles for loss and eight sacks across 24 starts. He never forced a single turnover at Alabama, but did lead the nation in PFF College’s run-stop percentage last year and showed an ability to cover tight ends and tailbacks on tape. A vicious hitter with missile-like range, Foster offers All-Pro potential if he can stay healthy and keep his head on straight. He has dealt with numerous stingers/concussions, is currently rehabbing a torn rotator cuff, and got kicked out of the Combine for arguing with a hospital worker after failing a drug test. He also managed a 9 on the Wonderlic. While his ceiling is high, Foster also has a low NFL floor.
Steelers selected Wisconsin OLB T.J. Watt with the No. 30 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.
Watt (6’5/252) arrived in Madison as a tight end recruit, only to convert to outside linebacker as a redshirt sophomore and break out as a junior for 15.5 tackles for loss and 11.5 sacks, earning second-team All-America. As a former pass catcher, Watt is a legitimate interception and pick-six threat with huge hands (11"). Watt ripped up the Combine with 94th-percentile athleticism. Although he carries one-year wonder concerns, Watt has drawn comparisons to Clay Matthews from NFL scouts and has significant growth potential at his new-ish position. At worst, Watt should become a dangerous sub-package rusher. He's an upside pick for the Steelers.
Browns selected Miami TE David Njoku at the No. 29 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.
Green Bay received the Nos. 33 and 108 overall picks to move down. Njoku (6’4/246) lasted two years at Miami before going pro, logging a 64/1,060/9 (16.6 YPR) receiving line and averaging 11.2 yards after the catch. Even at the ripe ages of 19 and 20, Njoku was a man amongst boys in the ACC. He logged playing time as an in-line tight end and showed a competitive willingness to tangle with much bigger defensive linemen. Njoku isn’t an O.J. Howard-caliber blocker, but he is functional in that area and is certain to cause passing-game mismatches as a 93rd-percentile athlete with LeBronian length (35 ¼-inch arms, 82 ½-inch wingspan). While Howard has the highest floor in this year’s tight end class, Njoku offers the highest pass-catching ceiling. Njoku should see the field early in two-tight end sets across from Gary Barnidge.
Cowboys selected Michigan DE Taco Charlton with the No. 28 overall pick of the 2017 NFL draft.
Charlton (6’6/277) made only 15 starts in four years, tallying 27.5 career tackles for loss with 18.5 sacks. He broke out as a senior for 9.5 sacks, earning first-team All-Big Ten. While his stats don’t jump off the page, Charlton improved steadily each year at Michigan and combines long arms (34 ¼") with above-par, 56th-percentile athleticism. He’s drawn comparisons to ex-Giants DT/DE Justin Tuck and Steelers DE Cameron Heyward. Toolsy and versatile, Charlton’s advanced technique and ability to function from multiple alignments should get him on the field quickly, which is important for a Cowboys' squad in desperate need of pass rushers. Charlton’s lack of twitch and explosive burst may cap his long-range ceiling, but he is in good hands with DC Rod Marinelli.
Bills selected LSU CB Tre'Davious White with the No. 27 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.
White (5’11/192) made a whopping 47 starts at LSU’s perennially-loaded cornerback factory, tallying 11 tackles for loss and six interceptions and earning first-team All-SEC as a senior. White offers plus versatility with experience at both slot and boundary corner. PFF College charged White with nine TD passes allowed over his final two seasons, however, and he disappointed in Indy with 12th-percentile athletic results, especially struggling in the vertical (32") and broad (9’11") jumps. More a physical technician than size-skill dominator, it’s certainly possible White’s game struggles to translate. He isn’t truly exceptional in any area.