Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State
Hey BGN, how are you guys? I wasn’t sure how to start explaining this pick for two main reasons: 1) There wasn’t much of a decision to be made in the first place, and 2) Given the opportunity I could talk about this player 100 different times in 100 different ways.
I finally settled on talking about three separate points. Those points will be: A) Why I wanted to select for the Colts and where they are as a team right now, B) Other directions I “considered” going with for this selection, and C) Gushing about NC State DE Bradley Chubb who is a virtual can’t-miss-prospect and the best defensive player in this draft class.
In an attempt to shorten this explanation a little I’ll link a few videos and articles detailing some of the finer details about this player that would help paint the full picture but aren’t essential to these three points. Basically you’ll get the full picture either way.
A. The Colts: Hoping to move in the Reich direction. (Sue me, I like awful puns)
When I decided that participating in this community draft was something I wanted to do I knew immediately that I wanted to select for the Colts. This is because they are one of only a handful of teams in the league in the enviable position of having a bonafide franchise quarterback and the ability to draft the best player available at every other position without worrying that the pick could have been spent better on a more pressing need.The way I see it teams can really only truly draft BPA without giving up immediately rookie production If they are in one of two scenarios. The first scenario is that a team is so talented and so deep at every position on the field that any player they select would struggle to make their way up the depth chart and contribute either way. The other, where the Colts find themselves, is that their team is in need of so much talent that picking a player at virtually any position will result in that player contributing to the team in a desperately needed way. Truly, outside of Q, TE, and Kicker any option was going to be on the table. Don’t believe me? Here’s the depth chart: [CLICK HERE]. Name a position where a top pick in this draft couldn’t take over, or at the very least play significant time. (Note LT and LG are solid but any O-line pick could easily slide in as a starter on the right.)
This offseason is huge for the football team in Indianapolis. In hopes of turning around their recent woes and saving the career of poor Andrew Luck the Colts ousted their General Manager and coaching staff. They then hired General Manager Chris Ballard who, without going on a massive tangent, I’m a big fan of. Next, the Colts dodged a bullet when turn-coat clown and Super Bowl 52 losing Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels got cold feet. This led to them stumbling backwards into two hires that could prove to be the best of this offseason: Super-Bowl winning Offensive Coordinator Frank Reich, and Josh McDaniel’s preferred Defensive Coordinator Matt Eberflus. Under this tandem it has been reported that Reich will call plays in an offense that works similar to the one that is run here in The City of Brotherly Love, and that the defense will be transitioning to a 4-3 (that’s the important one for the sake of our discussion today).
The final tidbit that needs to be discussed before moving on to the selection of Mr. Chubb is the trade back. Initially the 4-12 Colts were selecting at No. 3 in the upcoming 2018 NFL Draft. However, new GM Chris Ballard executed a trade with the New York Jets in which they forfeited that selection in exchange for picks number 6, 37, and 49 in the 2018 Draft as well as a second-round pick in 2019. I personally approve of this trade because it gives the Colts more prime selections to address their multitude of roster holes (especially quality OL and RB help that were unfixable here at the number 6 pick with Nelson and Barkley off the board). I would especially approve of the selection if the board falls the way it has in this scenario.
B. The “options” at pick 6
Going into this draft I anticipated 3-4 quarterbacks would come off the board prior to this selection allowing an elite prospect to fall into my lap. In no particular order I was interested in Penn State RB Saquon Barkley, Notre Dame OL Quinton Nelson, Alabama DB Minkah Fitzpatrick, and NC State DE Bradley Chubb. I won’t waste your time discussing Nelson and Barkley because I couldn’t select them even if I had wanted to. Instead, it came down to Chubb and Fitzpatrick. And honestly, it wasn’t very fair to Minkah despite the fact that I am very high on him.
Minkah Fitzpatrick’s appeal was that of a dynamic and versatile playmaker. The versatility was especially key in my gravitation towards him as a finalist for this pick. I truly do believe that Minkah could play Slot Corner, Deep Safety, and even Sub-package Linebacker at a high level in the NFL. Comparisons for him include Eagles Safety Malcolm Jenkins (who has played in a similar versatile role for our team) and Cardinals Safety Budda Baker.
It was hard to pass on that kind of upside and versatility. I was enamored with the idea of landing Reich’s Colts their own Malcolm Jenkins who would help solidify multiple positions for the team like Jenkins did for the Eagles back in 2014.
I didn’t end up having a choice in the end. Because,
C) Bradley Chubb is the kind of player only the Browns could pass on twice
Seriously, Chubb is going to be the kind of player that people feel silly for passing on in future years. He’s the type of player that GM’s get fired over not taking. No joke, anybody who passed on this guy is going to regret it forever. And look, I know this is all pretend and my pick has absolutely 0 effect on the real world at the end of the day but… I’m just not going to be one of those guys that lives with that type of regret hanging over my head.
When I got confirmed as the Colts pick in this draft it did not even cross my mind as a possibility that this guy would be available for me to pick. He wasn’t supposed to be here. I’m near certain in real-life he won’t be here. Yet, here he is. And boy, would the Colts be thanking every God that’s ever been celebrated that he somehow is. I’ve already mentioned that I think Chris Ballard will be a top-notch General Manager in this league, but this would be a next level/ Howie Roseman level steal we are talking about. Trading back AND still landing Chubb would make Mr. Ballard look like the smartest guy in the room and make them the De Facto winners of draft day. The closest comparison I could think of is back in last year’s draft when the 49ers somehow convinced the Bears to give up two thirds and a fourth to move up a single pick and select Mitch Trubisky. (The 9ers would then draft the player they wanted the whole time in Solomon Thomas.)
So why is this such a slam dunk of a pick? By now I’m sure even the most casual of football followers have heard some draft pundit heap mountains of praise on Bradley Chubb and laud him as a can’t-miss-prospect. While I would challenge that nobody is “Can’t-Miss”, Chubb is about as close as it gets. He’s probably the safest pick since, ironically, Andrew Luck. But this isn’t your typical “Draft to not bust” scenario. No, not at all. In fact, Chubb also has arguably the highest ceiling in this draft. He has a mouth-watering combination of college production, family pedigree (his Father Aaron, Brother Brendon, and cousin Nick have all found success in college football), athletic ability, and technique. Not to mention: the guy just looks the part. Watch his combine and highlights and tell me he won’t be a successful NFL pass rusher:
The biggest knocks on him? He plays a little out of control. His technique is only great and not perfect. Seriously. The biggest complaints about the guy that I’ve found are either fixable with a little coaching or just somebody insisting he’s “really, really, really good” and that in an ideal world he’d be perfect. No prospect, No player is perfect. Certainly, no prospect that could be drafted here is perfect either.
If you still somehow need a little more convincing that Bradley Chubb is the best player available at a premier position in the National Football League... I have one final argument. An exercise that I love more than any other when it comes to evaluating prospects is to list their floor (worst-case scenario), projection (most likely scenario), and ceiling (the best they could be).
Chubb’s Floor: Common comparisons for Chubb that I feel fit as a good floor are actually conveniently both on the Eagles roster right now. They are Chris Long and Derek Barnett. The idea here is that Chubb has a similar motor and intensity as these two players. He also possesses greater athletic ability than either of those players. At the very worst, Chubb will be a solid Defensive End in the National Football League. The type of guy with a strong presence and defensive play-making ability matched by few in the sport. In this scenario the Colts end up with an above-average starting caliber player who just maybe wasn’t worth this high of a first round investment. That’s right, the nightmare scenario for the Colts is that they get a Chris Long type player for 10+ years. Gee, what a nightmare.
Chubb’s Realistic Projection: A fair expectation for Chubb would be a Chandler Jones caliber player. Much like Jones has in New England and Arizona, it would be fair to expect him to be a high-quality starter who consistently racks up double digit sack seasons and collects multiple Pro Bowl nominations. Under this likely outcome the Colts get a player that could greatly accelerate their transition from a largely ineffective 3-4 defense to an intimidating 4-3 front.
Chubb’s Ceiling: The sky is Chubb’s only limit. He could very easily walk right into the NFL and produce in a Joey Bosa-esque way his rookie season. After that, he could continue to develop into JJ Watt/Khalil Mack/Reggie White/Michael Strahan territory. Chubb has Gold Jacket potential before he even takes a single NFL snap. He could honestly develop into the greatest pass rusher to ever live. Here’s a great video that helped gather a few of these comps:
Participating in this community’s mock draft has been real guys. I truly enjoyed being a part of this and, if you enjoyed having me, I’d love to be involved again next year. My one hope if I do get to select in this series again is that I get to make a decision: because this one was basically made for me.
Per Lance Zierlien: “Chubb possesses high-end physical traits, years of production and the ability to play in a variety of positions in both odd and even fronts. Chubb returned to school last year and turned areas of improvement into areas of strength. His motor and athletic ability cause him to jump off the tape snap after snap and his play attributes and production should translate quickly as a pro. Chubb should be an early pick, early starter and multi-time Pro Bowler.”
Do you approve of this pick?
This poll is closed
2018 BGN Community Mock Draft Order
1) Browns (GMinTraining): Saquon Barkley
2) Giants (ablesser88): Quenton Nelson
3) Jets (20Safety_Hazards): Sam Darnold
4) Browns (MJ1893): Josh Rosen
5) Broncos (drc242): Baker Mayfield
6) Colts (I Need a Username): Bradley Chubb
7) Buccaneers (dunc123):
8) Bears (NVEagleShark):
9) 49ers (Doug Pederson’s Pair of Balls):
10) Raiders (Milehighbirds):
11) Dolphins (danishdynamite_):
12) Bills (LAOJoe)
13) Washington (Eagle1987):
14) Packers (89Tremaine):
15) Cardinals (TJ “Ben Simmons” Mcconnell):
16) Ravens (PhillyEagles2011):
17) Chargers (LBCeaglesFan!):
18) Seahawks (KEZHOG):
19) Cowboys (Brawnybalboa):
20) Lions (dshelton5):
21) Bengals (Palaniappan K M):
22) Bills (BeamerWentzorBentley):
23) Patriots (jy1187):
24) Panthers (dceagles):
25) Titans (ei78):
26) Falcons (SakPrescott):
27) Saints (MidMajorMatt):
28) Steelers (SummersInVA):
29) Jaguars (RecarTabmok):
30) Vikings (AnthroEagle):
31) Patriots (PhilaWolverine):
32) Eagles (JALupowitz):
Now it’s time for you to vote for who YOU think the Colts should pick in the 2018 BGN Consensus Mock Draft.
Who should the Colts draft at No. 6 overall?
This poll is closed
1) Browns: Saquon Barkley
2) Giants: Sam Darnold
3) Jets: Josh Rosen
4) Browns: Josh Allen
5) Broncos: Baker Mayfield