American Football

Not every drafted player will be great: Which players would you avoid at their current projected draft position?


Syndication: USA TODAY
Kyle Robertson / USA TODAY NETWORK

After months of waiting, the NFL draft is finally upon us. Hundreds of players will be added to NFL rosters through this process over the new few days and the impacts of these additions will have ramifications on the landscape of the NFL for the next decade.

While this clearly positions the draft as important, it is also important to keep in mind that the majority of players taken will wind up having little to no impact and will go on to have rather forgettable careers; this includes many of the players taken on Day 1 and Day 2 of the draft.

With this in mind, I’d like to highlight a few players who I think are being overvalued and who I hope the New York Jets avoid. This comes with an important caveat, which is that I hope we avoid them at their current projected spots. However, there comes a point in the draft where the risk of taking the player may be outweighed by the potential rewards. Thus, I will only name players who are supposed to go on the first two days of the draft who I would not take until Day 3 of the draft with a round 4 pick or later.

  • Ohio State Quarterback CJ Stroud: Stroud’s tape is solid. His analytic profile is solid. However, he apparently did very poorly on the S2 cognition test, which is intended to measure reaction time and processing speed and has been positioned as a strong predictor of QB performance. While I think Stroud may be able to buck the trend, his success at the next level would make an outlier based on the S2, and, thus, I view him as a bad bet on an early round pick.
  • USC Wide Receiver Jordan Addison: The first strike on Addison was that he seems to be the first supposed “great” wide receiver who couldn’t find a way to produce within Head Coach Lane Kiffin’s system. The second strike on Addison was that he couldn’t produce at a high level with the supposed best quarterback since Andrew Luck, Caleb Williams. The third is that his combine testing left much to be desired with an RAS of 5.94. That’s three strikes and you’re out for me, and, overall, I’m left with a guy who may go round 1 that I think might be best suited as a WR3 (if that). While he might be someone else’s guy, he certainly isn’t mine.
  • Alabama Safety Brian Branch: Unfortunately for Brian Branch, while his tape is solid, you can’t really learn athleticism and he isn’t much of an athlete with an RAS score of 5.27. For me, I like my safeties to have some range and some versatility. I think Branch’s smaller stature and relatively poor athleticism will be limiting as a coverage player at the next level, so, in the words of Shark Tank Investors, for that reason, I am out.

However, these are just my “please avoids.” I like to think of Gang Green Nation as having some smart people around though. With that in mind, let’s crowdsource some information. I’d love for y’all to answer this question for me:

  • Who are your “please avoid” guys in the 2023 NFL draft?

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