Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin
Gasp! A running back in the 1st round? This makes no sense!?!? Fortunately for both Melvin Gordon and Todd Gurley, need is a powerful thing. Detroit has needs. Most of them on the defensive side of the ball. But one pick here will not solve all their problems. Still, coming off a 1st round exit in the playoffs with only GB threatening them in the division, they could conceivably go back again as a wild card this year. They still have Matt Stafford and Calvin Johnson, with a decent ground game they should score 25+ points per game assuming health this season.
But why a RB in the 1st round? Why not get someone later? While RB has been getting undervalued in recent seasons, the need for a running back who can make things happen has not. Between the 5 teams picking 23-28, the best running back on the current, collective rosters is a soon to be 30 year old Justin Forsett. For a playoff team looking to extend their window, this presents a conundrum. Do you build for the future? Or to you play to win now? Detroit, is looking to win now. With potentially 5 RB's looking to be off the board by the time Detroit picks again, they will need to strike while the iron is hot. The top two RB's do not make it past pick 28.
So why Gordon and not Todd Gurley? You simply can't argue against Gordon's production. After setting NCAA records last season he ended his career with 4,915 yards; 45 TD's; on an absurd 7.8 yards per carry for his entire year. The 343 carries will surely worry some as the old "workload" argument surfaces but chances are, he is not going to see 250+ touches in his first 2 years in the NFL. His measurable line up nicely with someone else that we know in the NFL...
Melvin Gordon -
Marshawn Lynch -
While we all know that while measurables will not tell the whole story it is impressive to note that they both have a similar running style. Gordon, much like Lynch, will not just let you tackle him.
His measurable show that he should be able to be an effective receiver out of the backfield, even though he has very little in the way of stats to show it. At Wisconsin he was primarily used as a workhorse.
His top end speed might be a little underrated at 4.52 40 time. As we all know, running on a track without pads is far different from game speed. This GIF is speed up a bit, but clearly shows his acceleration around the corner compared to the other players.
He can change direction to hit a hole or to lose a defender in space.
So why take a RB on the board at 23? Because with the RB needy teams left over, there might not be a decent one left around by the time they get to pick again. So they might as well get the best one now.
1) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (slickpablovick) - Jameis Winston, QB, FSU - [Explanation]
2) Tennessee Titans (mchiodo) - Leonard Williams, DE, USC - [Explanation]
3) Jacksonville Jaguars ("Snax") - Dante Fowler Jr., OLB, UF - [Explanation]
4) Oakland Raiders (kylebruneault) - Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama - [Explanation]
5) Washington Redskins (BigTimeTMZ) - Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon - [Explanation]
6) New York Jets (4thand26) - Kevin White, WR, WVU - [Explanation]
7) Chicago Bears (rohan915) - Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson - [Explanation]
8) Atlanta Falcons (GMinTraining) - Danny Shelton, DT, Washington - [Explanation]
9) New York Giants (Grandpapa Joe) - Landon Collins, S, Alabama - [Explanation]
10) St. Louis Rams (deg0ey) - Brandon Scherff, OL, Iowa - [Explanation]
11) Minnesota Vikings (ablesser88) - Trae Waynes, CB, MSU - [Explanation]
12) Cleveland Browns (djcunningham) - DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville - [Explanation]
13) New Orleans Saints (del.champion) - Shane Ray, DE, Mizzou - [Explanation]
14) Miami Dolphins (drc242) - Jalen Collins, CB, LSU - [Explanation]
15) San Francisco 49ers (SleepingDuck) - Randy Gregory, OLB, NU - [Explanation]
16) Houston Texans (JaviYL) - La'el Collins, OT, LSU - [Explanation]
17) San Diego Chargers (StoneColeKiller58) - Bud Dupree, OLB, UK - [Explanation]
18) Kansas City Chiefs (jimmyrustler) - Andrus Peat, OT, Standford - [Explanation]
19) Cleveland Browns (NowWhat?) - Malcom Brown, DT, Texas - [Explanation]
20) Philadelphia Eagles (sports00fan00) - Jaelen Strong, WR, ASU - [Explanation]
21) Cincinnati Bengals (Zach_The_Gamecock) - T.J. Clemmings, OT, Pitt - [Explanation]
22) Pittsburgh Steelers (KJ Brophy) - Arik Armstead, DE, Oregon - [Explanation]
23) Detroit Lions (KamiKazeJEDI) - Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin - [Explanation]
24) Arizona Cardinals (ItownBallers22) -
25) Carolina Panthers (AndyMcNabb) -
26) Baltimore Ravens (dceagles) -
27) Dallas Cowboys (kamjam) -
28) Denver Broncos (WubbaLubbaDubDub) -
29) Indianapolis Colts (ei78) -
30) Green Bay Packers (Nka727) -
31) New Orleans Saints (SwoopThereItIs) -
32) New England Patriots (naderg43) -