After a seven and a half hour Day Three, the NFL draft finally came to an end. On Day Three, some teams bolstered their rosters a bunch, while others didn't do much to improve their team. I have your Day Three winners, while Nick Chiamardas provides the Day Three losers.
San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers earned a spot in the winner column on Day Three. It started with the pick of wide receiver Quinton Patton. The Louisiana Tech product is a versatile wide receiver who has tremendous ball skills. Trent Baalke envisions Patton being used all over the field in the 49ers scheme. At the time of the selection, Patton was the best receiver left on the board.
Over a month ago I said that fans shouldn't be surprised if the 49ers take Marcus Lattimore. Yesterday, I wasn't surprised, but was sure glad they drafted the South Carolina running back. Lattimore is determined to come back from his injury and become a better player than he was before, and that would be a bad thing for NFL defenses. Frank Gore will be his mentor, and Lattimore will be Gore's successor. Yes, when healthy, he is THAT good.
Two other 49ers picks I really liked today were the selections of Alabama DL Quinton Dial, and Rutgers CB Marcus Cooper. Dial will be a big-bodied presence as an interior defensive lineman at 6'5" 318, who has tremendous upside. Cooper can run a sub 4.5, is a hard hitter at corner, and has good size at 6'2".
Good job Mr. Baalke, Coach Harbaugh, the whole staff and scouting department on a damn good draft.
Green Bay Packers
I really liked what the Pack did in the fourth round with the addition of UCLA running back Johnathan Franklin. Eddie Lacy is in a run for his money for the starting job, and Franklin will eat into his carries at the very least. This will provide the Packers with a physical one-two punch at running back, a dimension they have lacked for quite some time.
The Seahawks added one of my favorite receivers in the draft class in Kansas State product Chris Harper. Harper is about as physical as they come at receiver and will be a fine blocker as well as wideout. Harper's game compares to Michael Crabtree; He clearly has a way to go before completely warranting that comparison, but the similarities are there.
Seattle then added a guy the 49ers may have passed on for the fact he has a tattoo that says "YOLO" (questionable decision, ay?). All jokes aside, Alabama DL Jesse Williams is a bargain in the fifth round for Seattle. Williams was projected as a second round selection.
Unfortunately, they weren't done with good picks just yet. The Hawks then added LSU CB Tharold Simon. At 6'2", Simon is a tall and physical corner who Les Miles called a fierce competitor on NFL Network. Hopefully the Seahawks didn't find Richard Sherman 2.0.
Another NFC West team bolstered their roster today. The Cardinals added Texas defensive end Alex Okafor in the fourth, a player who some had going in the second. Okafor has shown that he's strong and shifty at the position, able to quickly shed blocks.
In the fifth, the Cardinals added Stanford running back Stepfan Taylor. Although Taylor isn't all that fast, and isn't very "explosive", he could turn out to be a very productive NFL running back. The Cardinals have long needed a running back with some toughness; a player who can move the chains. Taylor improves the Cards running game and makes their offense better.
Arizona may have found themselves a productive slot receiver in the sixth round. Texas A&M's Ryan Swope ran a 4.34-forty at the combine and was one of Heisman-winning quarterback Johnny Manziel's favorite targets. Swope was a preferred target of Ryan Tannehill's as well, hauling in 89 receptions for 1,207 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2011.
The Panthers reached big time in the fourth for Edmund Kugbila, an offensive lineman from Valdosta State (it’s in Georgia). I liked the A.J. Klein and Kenjon Barner picks, but the reach in the fourth, combined with only three picks on the day lands the Panthers on the ‘losers’ list.
The Browns are a team that needs a lot of help. Disappointingly they only had three picks on Day Three, and they didn’t do much with them (SS Jamoris Slaughter, DE Armonty Bryant, and OT Garrett Gilkey). It’s unlikely that any of the three will contribute right away.
Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs, believe it or not, have a pretty solid roster. But Andy Reid failed to really hit any home runs on Day Three. I think they reached in the fourth by selecting Alabama's Nico Johnson. Johnson is a two-down linebacker that likely would have been available in the fifth. They also reached in the sixth round with California (PA) center Eric Kush, who likely would have gone undrafted.
New York Jets
I don’t mind at all what the Jets did on Day One or Two. But on Day Three they took Oday Aboushi, a project left tackle, then another defensive tackle and a fullback. Not exactly guys that provide immediate help for a team that has one of the worst rosters in the NFL.
Who were your winners and losers of Day Three?