The Open Man’s NFL analyst Chase Ruttig and Ryan Walsh of the Cohen and Walsh Project teamed up for a 2018 NFL Draft diary.
Here are Ruttig and Walsh’s HOT TAKES™ from the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft. Some strong language and overall silliness can be found below:
1. Cleveland Browns, Baker Mayfield, QB Oklahoma
Ruttig: Yes, full disclosure here is that I am a lifelong New York Giants fan with a Big Blue bias. I am in love with this pick and am very glad the Giants chose to commit to trying to win during the final years of Eli Manning’s contract rather than spending a second overall pick on a player who would sit on the bench until Eli decides to retire.
If only a top quarterback fell to Day 2 for the Giants to make this a home run, but that is a story for later on.
Walsh: The Jets made the best decision by taking Darnold. To me, he’s the quarterback best-equipped to step in immediately. He’s used to dealing with the pressures of big-market media and has the “lowest-floor” so to speak of the quarterbacks taken tonight.
Ward certainly will be a solid cornerback, the problem is the Browns had a chance at either Saquon Barkley or Bradley Chubb and ended up with a perceived lesser package than most were expecting.
Walsh: The Broncos were the clear benefactors of being able to envision a future Cleveland didn’t. Peyton made a literal boatload of money – by which I mean, he was able to buy a boat with the fortune he made by name dropping Budweiser in his postgame interview – but true football students knew their title is largely due to the pressure put on by Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware. Von Miller was bestowed the Ware role a few years back, and Bradley Chubb is now the Von Miller that bookends their OLB core.
Quenton Nelson is not going to directly give you fantasy points, but the team he goes to will have stronger pass protection and a mammoth blocking up front in the run game pic.twitter.com/bnOtjpolmU
— Crow Worthy (@CrowWorthy) April 24, 2018
Walsh: I don’t know man, it felt like people were punching a little below the belt by digging up his old tweets. It clearly doesn’t make anything that he said acceptable, but if Twitter had been a thing when I was fourteen there is a 100% chance I would have tweeted something insensitive. I know this because twitter was available when I was in college, and I tweeted things that were completely unfunny and insensitive.
Ruttig: The hope for the Bears is that Smith can join the long line of inside linebackers to become All-Pro level players for the franchise. Smith will give the Bears a talent they haven’t had during their post-Brian Urlacher rebuild. Having that anchor in the middle of the field to accumulate tackles is an important part of the Bears identity and this pick is very on-brand for their front office.
Walsh: Wow. Very rarely do I outwardly admit that “Chase Ruttig is right” but also – Chase Ruttig is completely right. The Niners crushed this pick.
Ruttig: I admittedly only follow the draft on Twitter now and was keeping my eyes peeled to the NHL Playoffs so I missed the ESPN and NFL Network coverage Awful Announcing used to pay me to watch.
Ruttig: Vita Vea was a player most fans hovering around the Top 10 were coveting for their respective teams. Interior pass rushers are important to winning in the trenches and Vea will come in with a lot of hype as an impressive athletic prospect for the Bucs.
Ruttig: I won’t lie, you can’t catch me watching UTSA games and I am often a disgusting degenerate gambler who could find myself watching a Conference USA game. Because of that I can’t submit too confident of a take either way on this move other than the fact it is concerning to move two first-round picks to pick 14th, we will have to see if the Saints continue to hit on draft picks and if Davenport allows them to get more pressure on quarterbacks to address their rather weak defensive unit.
— Nick Hjeltness (@NickHjeltness) April 26, 2018
Walsh: Stephen A. Smith is one of the most meme-worthy people online. That meme that gone global. The David Roth CRAB RANGOON, THINGS OF THAT NATURE tweet should be buried in a time capsule as one of humanity’s best achievements.
PF Chang’s waiter: “[Recites specials] Stephen A. Smith: (Acts surprised) “To me, that’s preposterous. Crab Rangoon, things of that nature.”
— David Roth (@david_j_roth) June 13, 2012
Ruttig: If there is anything NFL general managers love, it is the opportunity to swap draft picks to alter their draft position and give them an excuse to haggle on the phone. OLD WHITE MEN TALKING FOOOTBAWWWW TRADES.
Walsh: Derwin James is a high-floor, high-ceiling pick: also referred to as “good.” Sometimes you don’t have to swing that hard to hit a home run. Good writers mix metaphors.
Ruttig: I felt bad for Lamar Jackson watching his teammate go ahead of him despite the fact Lamar Jackson won the Heisman Trophy. Johnny Manziel was probably high on MDMA at the NFL Draft and still went higher.
Walsh: Manziel had a beer at the NFL Draft which – in retrospect – should have been a huge red flag. Vander Esch has such a gigantic neck and played eight on eight football. Those who saw the ESPN broadcast may have seen that the Dallas draft room looked like the board room at the Deth Star, and while there were so many subservient, manager types standing at attention behind Jerry – phone in hand, at the head of the table, obviously – there was a young blond boy, about eight or nine, seated two spots from Jerry Jones.
Ruttig: The center position was a big issue for the Lions last year and Ragnow answers that problem. Arkansas also produces solid offensive line talent, so I enjoy this pick because of that.
Ruttig: I am waiting for the day Alabama produces 22 first round draft picks.
Walsh: The most incredible thing about players that succeed under Bill Belichick is that they can understand anything he’s saying because that man is a mumble machine.
Ruttig: Ruttig: D.J. Moore provides Scott Van Pelt with further opportunities to remind you that he went to school at the University of Maryland, a school with a broadcast journalism program.
Walsh: The Ravens and Bills both made multiple trades. YA GOTTA SAY THAT WHEN A TEAM MAKES A TRADE THEY’RE GOING TO GO OUT AND GET THEIR GUY.
Ruttig: I like the Calvin Ridley pick and think the Falcons are the type of team that can afford to commit to a skill position depth piece rather than address a glaring need and try to find a late round starter.
It’s weird seeing Seattle address their running back issues by 1) not taking Derrius Guice or Sony Michel and 2) ignoring the tire fire that is their offensive line.
Ruttig: Love Ryan Shazier and I am worried the NFL is going to turn his tragedy into the type of football propaganda sportswriters hate and turn against the NFL, which makes their propaganda moot in the first place.
Walsh: Can we all agree that “Taven” is a dumb name?
Ruttig: The Vikings are so good and I like the move to add secondary depth with Hughes after making the splurge on offense in free agency with Kirk Cousins. Minnesota look like the NFL favorites during the draft weekend, which certainly won’t end terribly for them.
32. Baltimore Ravens, Lamar Jackson, QB Louisville