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Going for 2: Talking NFL Draft, UDFA Signings & More

Michigan broke a program record with 11 players drafted in the 2017 NFL Draft.

NFL: Cleveland Browns-Press Conference Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Andrew: Jared, my man! How are you doing today? Any injuries sustained or casualties suffered due to NFL Draft weekend?

Jared: Only the damage done voluntarily to my liver and pride, nothing that cannot be undone. I forgot how damn long that draft is, I will be sure to switch to a lighter beer choice for next years.

Speaking of the draft, how do you feel about our boys? Is there one fit for a former UM star that you particularly like or dislike?

Andrew: Drinking away the later rounds is never a bad idea! But let’s look at these carefully. I’ll start with two that I love and those are both of our former defensive ends: Chris Wormley to the Ravens and Taco Charlton to the Cowboys. The Harbaugh-to-Harbaugh connection is easily to get excited about, but he also gets to be mentored by Terrell Suggs and play within a traditionally stout defense. For Charlton, he joins a team that went 13-3 and even led the NFL in rushing defense. Charlton will have one job: get to the quarterback and take pressure of their secondary. Speaking of the secondary, how about your boy JD (Jourdan Lewis to the uncool kids) going to Dallas with Charlton?

Jared: Might be some low hanging fruit, but I will gladly pluck at it; Wormley to the other Harbaugh is most definitely a great fit. He won’t be asked to be the premier pass rusher there and should develop into a nice run stuffer in a run heavy division. I LOVE that Charlton and Lewis are going to play together. I said from the beginning that I believe those two will have the best professional careers, and they landed with a team that gives them a chance to do just that.

I am obviously not a Cowboys fan (as I have both a soul and a heart), but I will be watching their games to check out that young, exciting defense. I can’t say exactly why I think this, but I think Ryan Glasgow will have an excellent career in Cincy as well. They seem to develop guys well on the D line and he is already an absolute technician in the trenches.

NFL: Combine
Taco Tuesdays are coming to Dallas.
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Andrew: Glasgow is intriguing. I don’t understand what it is about the family and blooming late, but Cincy got a steal. The Glasgow’s are like the Fast & Furious franchise. They enter college about Tokyo Drift level and evolve into Fast Five caliber in the NFL. I believe Ryan will follow in Graham’s trajectory, but the jury is still out on Jordan (he’s approaching Fast 4 level).

Okay, let’s face it: Jabrill Peppers is a Cleveland Brown. May God be with him on this journey because it has not worked out for the vast majority before him. Before I rant, the floor is yours. How do you feel about this situation?

Jared: I get it, so a Glasgow comes in just driving cars really fast, and by the end there are machine guns, submarines and explosions and nobody knows what is up or down? That is a pretty fair approximation by my standards.

Man, the amount that I could write on the “legacy”, or lack thereof for Peppers, would fill up a scroll. It almost seems fitting to me that he ends up a Brown. On one hand, it is hilarious because now a bunch of Ohio State fans are going to have to root for him on Sundays. On the other hand it is depressing because the Cleveland Browns are actually a thing that exist, and he has to play for them.

Honestly, I always find myself pulling for Cleveland because sometimes you just have to root for a pile of burning tires, and their fans would go nuts if they were to ever win more than 6 games. I just worry that it is a terrible landing spot for Pepper’s development. Whoever took Peppers needed to take him with a very clear plan in mind. He is nowhere near ready to cover NFL receivers or tight ends, so he needs a system that can hide, or mask his deficiencies in coverage. Maybe Gregg Williams and Hue Jackson have that plan, but we don’t really know what to expect.

Indiana v Michigan Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

I think had he have gone somewhere with a strong secondary already in place (Seattle, Arizona, New England), he could have been used more as a blitzing linebacker/safety hybrid that wasn’t asked to cover much. Now he is the second best player in Cleveland’s secondary. Good luck with that.

Andrew: I am interested/ concerned/ afraid to see how he is used, but still believe he can thrive. The Browns have pieces in place: Joe Thomas (top 10 player in the league), Garrett, Haden, and now Peppers. Could we this be the draft the Browns turn it around? Could a Michigan man save Ohio’s staple city of disappointment? This is potentially Shakespeare-esque romanticism. God I love football.

To the offense we go! Which receiver do you see having more success: Chesson in KC or Darboh in Seattle?

Jared: I have to agree that the Browns do look to be on their way towards something resembling respectable, we shall see where Mr. Peppers and his love of fraternities and excessive celebrations can take them.

As for some former players I will actually miss (I have unresolved issues with JP5 clearly), I am leaning Darboh with this one. He is going into a an excellent situation with a franchise signal caller in his prime, and I think he is the better prospect to begin with anyways.

I have made the comparison before and I will make it again, I think Darboh is Jason Avant. The two have similar measurables; Avant 6-0, 210 pounds, Darboh 6-2, 214 pounds. Both have a solid catch radius and ran crisp, veteran routes coming out of college.

Avant was overshadowed during his time at Michigan, but he ended up having a longer pro career than any of the college ballers above him (Braylon, Manningham, Breaston). Darboh was not quite in the same situation, but J Booty was the main man, and Chesson was supposed to be the guy this past year. I would not be surprised in the least if Darboh had a longer career than both of those guys.

Who do you like in that battle? Were you surprised to see the DB guru’s in Seattle run to the podium for Delano Hill? Have we been missing something? Was Delano Hill a monster this whole time and we were all collectively sleeping on the next Earl Thomas?

Andrew: As for Darboh and Chesson, I like Darboh in the short term as long as his offensive line plays better than a Canadian League team. Last season, Russell Wilson was running for his life and I’m not sure if that issue has been addressed enough. Chesson is interesting in KC because if Mahomes ever develops into a prolific NFL passer, I don’t care if it’s Kyle Kalis at receiver, everyone will thrive. Obviously, they have to allow him develop behind the greatest game manager of all time first, which could take some time. But also in Chesson’s favor is that Jeremy Maclin is about as durable as Wal-Mart tissues in a rainstorm so Chesson could get a lot of valuable experience early.

We may have overlooked the next Earl Thomas, but his name is JABRILL FREAKING PEPPERS (I have no issues with him besides the fact I wept when he left). But Delano HIll is an interesting sleeper. I was honestly shocked at everything coming out of Seattle about how much they wanted Hill. Especially with speculation swelling around Chancellor and Sherman leaving (via trade or release), Hill could become an integral part of the next Legion of Boom. Okay, we must go back and watch tape on Hill now so we are ahead of the curve.

Speaking of sleepers, which UDFA signing becomes a contributor immediately or which one are you ALL IN on becoming a Pro Bowl caliber player?

Jared: Are those my only options? For early contributor, I think it could be De’Veon Smith down in Miami. He is NFL ready with his size and should be a capable blocker right out of the gate. Plus that dude loves to work, and I envision that work ethic and his ability to break tackles help him find a role early on.

As far as a Pro Bowler, it might honestly be Kenny Allen. I am more than willing to take my fair share of criticism for that pick, but he probably would have the best chance. I really don’t see any of the offensive line guys taking some huge jump in talent or ability all of a sudden. If that happened at this point it would honestly just infuriate me.

Wisconsin v Michigan

Channing Stribling is an interesting one, because his coverage skills are actually very solid. He can hang in a receiver's hip pocket and has the length and flexibility to get around and make a play on the ball. I would equate his run defense to a kitten playfully batting at a sunflower on a leisurely Sunday afternoon however, and that needs to be addressed. Thing is, tackling can be taught and is mostly sheer will and desire. He could easily make another big leap in talent and ability and it would neither anger or surprise me. Who do you like of the UDFA’s? Is it too early to talk next year's draft? Who do you think improves their stock this season?

Andrew: Love the Kenny Allen pick actually! After the Monstars returned the talent they stole before the Wisconsin game, he was excellent down the stretch.

I am going Dymonte Thomas in Denver. He has shown flashes of greatness (and not so greatness) and I think at 6’2, if he can bulk up to around 205, he could become a force in the secondary. Couple that with the fact he is playing with the highest rated corner (according to Pro Football Focus) in Aqib Talib and talented guys such as Chris Harris and T.J. Ward, Thomas will not be forced into anything. With our luck however, Kalis will be the next Joe Thomas and just so you know, if this happens I will name my first born child Kyle regardless of gender.

As far as a stock boost this year, do we go with 2018 draft eligibles only or drafts even further? For 2018, I expect Mason Cole’s versatility to shine if he is forced to play left tackle or several positions along the line. He was the one consistent bright spot in run blocking last year and with the help he should be receiving this year, I expect his stock to continue to rise. Excited he came back!

For the distant future, can we gloat about the manchild Devin Bush enough? How about the 2018 Big 10 Player of the Year Brandon Peters? Let us not forget the superhero Captain America. I’ll refrain for now, but these three are the stars we will be writing about in the coming years.

Jared: I like the Dymonte pick, you may have backed the right horse on that one.

Mason Cole, now there is a guy I could name a son after. That dude has been as consistent as taxes since he got to campus. I think it will be Ty Wheatley Jr. who boosts his 2018 stock the most though. There were a ton of tight ends drafted this year, which helps illustrate the value the NFL sees in them. Wheatley Jr. has all the physical traits and skills to be a really, really good one. If I was a linebacker at any level and saw that entertainment center sized man rumbling at me with 4.5 speed, I would promptly retire.

Wilton Speight is another one who basically controls his own draft fate. If he improves from last year, he will one hundred percent get drafted. He has the size and mobility that teams covet, and he is in a pro friendly system. If he performs the exact same as he did last season, he will still probably get drafted. There aren’t enough solid signal callers that check all the boxes pro teams want, he will be on an NFL roster at some point I can almost guarantee.

If we are going beyond 2018, all conversations would begin and end with Rashan Gary. What is the pick before the 1st overall pick? He will be that pick, and the next 3 picks after it.

Andrew: Nick would probably rate Khalid Hill as the first, second, and third picks in the future and have Mo Hurst going undrafted (just kidding, love ya Nick). Any closing thoughts from this weekend man?

Nick: Hey!! The people don’t even know what you’re referencing yet!

Jared: We didn’t mention the mayor of Ann Arbor, J Booty once, and that seems blasphemous. It literally hurt my heart to watch him fall that far in the Draft because he went out and fought for his team and his teammates one last time. I really hopes he gets a chance to show what he can do and sticks in the league for as long as he wants to be there. As always, Go Blue!

Poll

What Wolverine was drafted into the best situation?

This poll is closed

  • 2%
    Jabrill Peppers- Browns
    (9 votes)
  • 40%
    Taco Charlton- Cowboys
    (123 votes)
  • 18%
    Chris Wormley- Ravens
    (55 votes)
  • 7%
    Jourdan Lewis- Cowboys
    (24 votes)
  • 7%
    Delano Hill- Seahawks
    (22 votes)
  • 4%
    Amara Darboh- Seahawks
    (14 votes)
  • 1%
    Jehu Chesson- Chiefs
    (4 votes)
  • 2%
    Ben Gedeon- Vikings
    (7 votes)
  • 15%
    Jake Butt- Broncos
    (46 votes)
  • 0%
    Other
    (0 votes)
304 votes total Vote Now