Commissioner Roger Goodell walks out onto the stage
to announce a pick during the first round of the NFL
football draft, Thursday, April 28, 2016, in
Yes, there still are some
terrific Buckeyes left in the NFL draft, even after five
went in the first round.
There are plenty of
defensive backs, too, despite seven being chosen in the
first 25 spots.
Perhaps most intriguing:
Alabama, the defending national champion and perennial
powerhouse, had only one player picked in the opening 31,
center Ryan Kelly to Indianapolis.
So when the proceedings
commence Friday evening, look for a rolling Crimson Tide.
Still on the board from
Nick Saban's program are the likes of Heisman
Trophy-winning running back Derrick Henry, playmaking
linebacker Reggie Ragland, and standout defensive linemen
A'Shawn Robinson and Jarren Reed. All should go in the
second round, with cornerback Cyrus Jones a possibility.
While 'Bama was nearly
ignored on Thursday night, Ohio State dominated. Chosen
from the Buckeyes were DE Joey Bosa, RB Ezekiel Elliott,
CB Eli Apple, OT Taylor Decker and LB Darron Lee.
"It's the greatest
feeling," said Apple, who is headed to the Big Apple
and the Giants. "Those are guys that you battle with,
guys that have just been through so much. So to see us
succeed right now and go through all this good stuff is a
There could be more coming.
Still on the board from Ohio State are safeties Vonn Bell
and Tyvis Powell; WR Michael Thomas; OL Chase Farris; QB
Cardale Jones; and quarterback turned wideout Braxton
A surprising three
potential pro safeties went on the first day, although
Florida State's Jalen Ramsey might wind up at cornerback
in San Diego. Last year, no true safeties were taken in
the opening round.
With four cornerbacks
selected, the secondary accounted for the most players
chosen in the first 31. Which means, well, there are
plenty of defensive backs available.
Names to keep an eye out
for are Mackensie Alexander of Clemson, Darian Thompson of
Boise State, Jalen Mills of LSU, DeAndre Houston-Carson of
William & Mary, Jeremy Cash of Duke and Kendall Fuller
of Virginia Tech.
At one point, a run on
receivers saw three disappear consecutively late in the
first round. But only four wideouts went altogether,
leaving a solid collection of prospects for the pass-happy
In Rounds 2 and 3, such
targets as Tyler Boyd of Pittsburgh, Sterling Shepard of
Oklahoma, Ohio State's Thomas and Miller, and a tight end,
Hunter Henry of Arkansas could be called.
While the Rams and Eagles
at the top of the draft and the Broncos in a trade up from
No. 31 to 26th presumably got their quarterbacks of the
future, Day 2 could see a few more passers join NFL teams.
Michigan State's Connor Cook, Mississippi State's Dak
Prescott, Ohio State's Jones, Arkansas' Brandon Allen and
Stanford's Kevin Hogan are possibilities.
One player still out there
is UCLA linebacker Myles Jack, who when healthy might be
the best athlete in this class. But right knee issues have
severely clouded his future.
Does someone reach out for
the versatile go-getter? We'll see.