2016 NFL draft
Gas masks, breaking out windows, sleepers and Germans made the 2016 draft one of the most memorable drafts yet.
So in the words of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell: “Are you ready for the draft? Let’s get started.”
Everybody knew it from the start. When the LA Rams and the Philadelphia eagles traded down for the first and second overall picks (respectively) everyone knew they would take quarterbacks. To no one’s’ surprise the Rams took QB Jared Goff with the number one overall pick and the Eagles followed by picking QB Carson Wentz.
The Chargers are now on the clock. To just about everyone’s surprise they took Ohio defensive end Joey Bosa despite Jalen Ramsey still being up for grabs. This was an interesting pick as Bosa isn’t really a fit for San Diego’s defense, plus all the tackles were still on the board (tackle being a need for SD)
Now for team surrounded by question marks. The Dallas Cowboys. Would they select a running back despite them having three already on the roster? Would they select Tony Romo’s eventual replacement? Perhaps they would select a pass rusher as their two starters are suspended to start the year? Or maybe if they are lucky enough they could draft the athletic freak Jalen Ramsey. The Dallas Cowboys would select Ezekiel Elliott a RB fourth overall to run behind their stacked offensive line. Elliott has been getting a lot of hype and is even thought to become the offensive rookie of the year, so good news for Cowboys’ fans.
Despite the rather calm top four selections, the draft would go in a different direction. Laremy Tunsil, who many draft analysts have claimed is the best player in the draft, had a video of himself taking a hit from a bong while wearing a gas mask a mere minutes before the draft. This would be a multi-million dollar mistake as he would be drafted much later than anyone thought. He would ultimately fall to the Dolphins, but the key word is fall here.
Another draft story involved stud Ole Miss defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche, who earlier in the year, did a large amount of spice then proceeded to break out of a window, landing in the bushes two stories below. Normally, behavior like this is a red flag to NFL scouts, but the Arizona Cardinals could not ignore the young man’s talent and drafted him in the first round. They hope their risk will bring a big reward.
Perhaps one of the drafts best stories involves a 6’4” German by the name of Moritz Boehringer. Boehringer played for the German league after watching football highlights on YouTube. Despite no experience in the sport, Boehringer would dominate the German league with his speed and size. He was being called the “German Randy Moss”. Boehringer wasn’t just receiving attention in Germany, he was being talked about by NFL scouts from many teams, but despite this, he was never thought to be drafted at all. Regardless, in the sixth round of the draft the Minnesota Vikings would select Boehringer. Coincidentally, the highlights that Boehringer watched that ultimately propelled him to play football were of Adrian Peterson, who will play alongside him. Boehringer’s story is quickly making him a favorite amongst fans, and will be an easy person to root for this offseason.
However the draft is not done yet. A large majority of the rookies still have to negotiate contracts and officially sign with their respective team. Undrafted players such as former Oregon quarterback Vernon Adams and Safety Vernon Adams will fight for their lives in order to make a team, and will tryout in future rookie minicamps. The upcoming rookie minicamps the teams will be holding will be vital for the rookie’s success in their career.
The 2016 draft and all of it’s 253 picks have shown to be very promising, but the real question is can the picks contribute on the field? Can number-one overall pick Jared Goff live up to the hype? Will Ezekiel Elliott be able to capitalize on Dallas’ loaded offensive line? Will Tunsil put his draft plummet behind him and show his true potential? Perhaps Nkemdiche can prove his off-the-field issues won’t be part of his baggage on his new team? Finally, will the first-of-his-kind German league player be able to overcome the odds and develop his physical traits? These stories won’t be coming to a close anytime soon. The season is still months away, and the headlines will only be popping up more and more this offseason – hopefully for all the good reasons.
By Matthew Montoya