How the NFC West fared in round one of the 2019 NFL Draft
The Arizona Cardinals weren’t the only NFC West team to make moves in the first day of the 2019 NFL Draft.
The NFC West continues to get stronger. With the addition of Kyler Murray to the Arizona Cardinals, each NFC West team projects to be competitive in terms of quarterback play. But, outside of Murray, the rest of the West decided to either trade down or added to the defensive side of the ball. Let’s check in with how each team fared in the first round, including the Cardinals.
The Arizona Cardinals get exciting with the addition of Kyler Murray.
Maybe the boldest, yet worst kept secret in the draft, Kyler Murray became an Arizona Cardinal and it didn’t take too long for it to happen. After trading up to select Josh Rosen at No. 10 overall last year, many, including myself didn’t expect this; despite the rumors from all different types of sources. But that didn’t stop Keim from going all in with both Kingsbury and Murray.
Murray will be the unquestioned starter come week one. Although he brings risk with his stature among other weaknesses, he’s one of the more fascinating products in recent memory. The former Heisman winner is a true dual-threat quarterback that can win with both his arm and legs. His familiarity with a Kingsbury-esque offense should also bode well for the young shot-caller.
The San Francisco 49ers continue to build a formidable defense.
Many thought, earlier in the draft process, that Nick Bosa would be a Cardinal come the end of April 25th. It turns out, he found himself on the division 49ers after being selected at No. 2 overall. Bosa may not have the highest ceiling in the class, but he may have the highest floor — at minimum, I see him as a productive pass-rusher.
Bosa projects as a good a fit in the 49ers’ 4-3 defense that lacked edge rushing talent before the start of the off-season. However, that notion has changed with the addition of the younger Bosa and the trade for Dee Ford. Couple those additions with newly signed Kwon Alexander and young interior defensive lineman DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead, and the 49ers look to have a much-improved defense in 2019.
The Seattle Seahawks fill a need and continue to add picks.
The Seahawks came into the first round with two picks thanks to the Frank Clark trade two days ago, but they left with just one selection. In typical Seahawks fashion, the team decided to trade down twice and eventually traded one of their picks out of the first round entirely. But they left with a nice haul that should compliment their aspirations of building around Russell Wilson on a budget.
The team replaced Clark with edge defender L.J. Collier; a twitchy athlete with excellent tape in limited action at TCU. And with their two trade downs, they added five picks including No.’s 37, 115, 119, 132, and 142. For a team possessing just four picks days ago, but wanting more, it looks like the Seahawks achieved their goal of adding more selections.
The Los Angeles Rams opt to follow the Seahawks trade-down trend.
One of the teams to not make a selection in the first of the NFL draft, the Rams opted to trade out of No. 31 overall by making a trade with the Atlanta Falcons. The deal included selection No. 45 and 79. Like the Seahawks, the Rams were another team many expected to trade down as they didn’t own a second or a third outside of a compensatory pick entering the draft.
The Rams now have four picks in the top 100. Expect for them to target interior offensive lineman early to rebuild holes left by free agency departures. Linebacker may also be a priority, so could edge rusher as Dante Fowler re-upped for just a one-year deal.
Don’t worry. NFL draft season is just beginning. We have six more rounds to go for the Cardinals to reload around their new offense.