Friday, April 26, 2013
Friendly reminder about DraftTracker
By Jamison Hensley
The best way to follow the draft for your favorite AFC North team is by checking this blog for updates. I can assume, by you reading this, that you already know that. You'll also want to click on ESPN's DraftTracker. It's part of Insider, so you'll need a subscription for the full effect.
If my endorsement means nothing to you, here's a sampling of what you missed with the first-round picks Thursday night:
6. Cleveland Browns
Pick: OLB Barkevious Mingo, LSU
DraftTracker: Mingo gives them three athletic speed-rushers, and they can also show some 4-3 fronts at times -- especially in nickel and sub packages. The athleticism that this defensive front now has is going to be very tough to block in space. (New defensive coordinator Ray) Horton loves to change his fronts and bring a variety of aggressive blitzes. Cleveland wants to play fast, but under control. This probably fits Mingo's skill set nicely.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers
Pick: OLB Jarvis Jones, Georgia
DraftTracker: If Jones can step in immediately at right outside linebacker, it gives Pittsburgh a nice three-man rotation. What we have to keep in mind is that almost all of the Steelers' pass rush comes from the outside linebackers, with occasional blitz help from safety Troy Polamalu. But this defense, year in and year out, is only as good as its edge pressure, and Jones must give them that.
21. Cincinnati Bengals
Pick: TE Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame
DraftTracker: Eifert is an excellent matchup tight end. He can play in-line or flex, and what makes him interesting is that the Bengals have been looking for a quality No. 2 wide receiver to complement A.J. Green. Eifert may give them some of those matchup plays. Where he will really help this offense is in the red zone. In this new era of multiple tight-end sets, Eifert will allow the Bengals to get creative.
32. Baltimore Ravens
Pick: S Matt Elam, Florida
DraftTracker: This is a defense that expects a lot of range out of its corners, and the Ravens want a skill package that includes the ability to play both man and zone schemes. A year ago, Baltimore played a lot of dollar coverages, with six defensive backs on the field at times. They obviously hope to get center-field range from Elam, and he should be an immediate starter because of need.