2019 NFL Draft Second-Day Values: Offense

2019 NFL Draft Second-Day Values: Offense
2019 NFL Draft Day 2 Values: Offense | 2019 NFL Draft Day 2 Values: Defense
2019 NFL Draft Potential Busts: Offense | 2019 NFL Draft Potential Busts: Defense
2019 NFL Draft Day-Three Sleepers

Published April 19, 2019.
By Charlie Campbell – @draftcampbell

In the recent weeks, there have been a lot of questions about who are my value picks in the 2019 NFL Draft class. A value or sleeper prospect is basically a player who gets drafted after the first round and proves to be a steal. The second day of the draft is where the men are separated from the boys among NFL general managers. All the players have strengths and flaws, but the top evaluators find future starters and team building blocks on Day 2. Every year, I pick my favorite second-day value. In order to hold myself more accountable, I started putting in a runner-up in case the first choice is a surprise first-round pick. If a player goes in Round 1, I should not get credit calling them a second-day value pick if they pan out. Here is my track record over the last decade going back to my time with Pewter Report.

2008: Brandon Flowers, CB, Virginia Tech
2009: Mike Wallace, WR, Ole Miss
2010: Brian Price, DT, UCLA and Brandon Spikes, ILB, Florida
2011: Justin Houston, OLB, Georgia
2012: Derek Wolfe, DL, Cincinnati

2013: Larry Warford, G, Kentucky
2014: Jeremy Hill, RB, LSU
2015: Cedric Ogbuehi, OT Texas A&M, and Ronald Darby, CB, Florida State
2016: Jaylon Smith, LB Notre Dame and Sheldon Day, DT, Notre Dame
2017: Gerald Everett, TE South Alabama (runner-up: Akhello Witherspoon, CB, Colorado)

2018: Terrell Edmunds, S, Virginia Tech (runner-up: Arden Key, DE, LSU)
2019: Darnell Savage, S, Maryland (runner-up: Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina)

This year was difficult to project because a lot of the players who I wanted to pick I had to dismiss because they could be late first-round picks like Terrell Edmunds was in 2018. The players who I wanted to pick are Texas A&M center Erik McCoy, Boston College guard Chris Lindstrom, and Mississippi State safety Johnathan Abram. All three are in the first round of my 2019 NFL Mock Draft, however, so I felt I shouldn’t pick any of those three. My choice came down to Maryland safety Darnell Savage or South Carolina wide receiver Deebo Samuel.

Savage won out over Samuel, because I think Savage is going to be a success wherever he lands, whereas I could see Samuel having issues if he goes to a team that doesn’t use him properly or has a bad quarterback. Savage is tailor-made for the passing-driven NFL with his coverage skills. I think both players are going to be very successful in the NFL and steals in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Overall, this list is very strong with the one exception being Brian Price. Unfortunately, family tragedies robbed him of being able to put an NFL career together. Flowers has had a Pro Bowl career. Wallace has been a good pro receiver and helped get the Steelers to a Super Bowl. Houston was a pass-rushing terror for the Chiefs, while Wolfe has turned into a very good pro for the Broncos. Warford is one of the better guards in the NFL. He has been better than top-10 picks at guard in the same draft class, Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper. Hill flashed as a rookie before becoming a big disappointment.

Four years ago, I went with Cedric Ogbuehi with Ronald Darby being my backup. Since Ogbuehi was selected in the first round, he doesn’t count for the long-term track record, but that would be a miss on my part. On the flip side, Darby has played really well for Buffalo and Philadelphia in his career. In 2016, I had a hit with Jaylon Smith, but Sheldon Day is a bit of a miss. Day has flashed at times, but has had trouble breaking through. At this point it is too early to render any judgement on the 2017 and 2018 players.

Here is a breakdown of a top second-day-value prospect at each position for the 2019 draft class. All the players will be prospects who are likely going on the second day of the draft. If a player is a possible late first-round pick, I generally don’t include them as an option.

Clayton Thorson, QB, Northwestern
Of the non-first-round quarterbacks in the 2018 NFL Draft, I think Thorson has the most potential to surprise as a pro. He could be a second-day pick, and I think he has the potential to be the next steal from Day 2 to become a good starting quarterback.

Thorson has shown that he has pro potential in terms of his skill set. He can throw the deep out with a fastball that can be fit into tight windows. Thorson also has a quick delivery, but is a bit too mechanical. Scouts say that he has a strong arm and is smart and athletic while also being a leader with excellent intangibles. As a passer, Thorson has a lot of natural talent and development that is impressive. What really stands out his ability to stand tall in the pocket, read the field, work through his progressions, and deliver the ball. Thorson really has advanced field vision for a quarterback. He is not the type to run if his first target is covered, and he is comfortable working off his primary read. Thorson has good size, pocket presence, and a strong arm.

Thorson makes some throws with great accuracy, but there are throws that get away from him and he needs to become more consistent. His supporting cast at Northwestern was awful, so that hurt his accuracy as well.

Multiple team sources thought that Thorson would become a first-round pick early in his career. However his knee injury at the end of his junior year, not producing huge numbers, and some ugly throws here and there have him as a second-day pick. In this analyst’s opinion, Thorson will be a massive steal. If he had played at Clemson, Alabama, Georgia, Oklahoma, Texas, or another major program with talent around him, I think he would be a clear-cut first-round pick. I think Thorson will go on the second day of the 2019 NFL Draft, and no lower than the fourth round. He could be a steal and become a good starting quarterback in the NFL.

2018: Luke Falk
2017: Pat Mahomes
2016: Christian Hackenberg
2015: Garrett Grayson
2014: Teddy Bridgewater

Damien Harris, RB, Alabama
For the NFL, Harris could be a three-down starter who is the engine of a steady rushing attack. He has good bulk with knee bend and ability to run behind his yards. That combines to make him tough to tackle and leads him to picking up yards after contact. Harris is an excellent fit for a zone-blocking system due to thriving as a one-cut downhill runner. He has good vision, cutting ability, and decisiveness to hit the hole. On top of handling a larger work load, Harris does well in short-yardage situations. In the passing game, Harris is an asset. He did some real damage catching passes out of the backfield. On check downs, Harris is very dangerous to rip off yards in chunks. He has soft hands and runs good routes.

I think that Harris is going to become a good starting running back in the NFL and has the potential to be a Pro Bowler. Harris should be an excellent value pick from the 2019 NFL Draft.

2018: Ronald Jones
2017: Alvin Kamara
2016: C.J. Prosise
2015: T.J. Yeldon
2014: Jeremy Hill

Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama
As a pro, Smith has the potential to be a mismatch receiving tight end who produces some big plays for his offense in the passing game. He is a good route-runner with quickness, athleticism, and feel. Smith is too smooth of a route-runner for linebackers to run with, and he has enough size to make catches over defensive backs. He tracks the ball well downfield and shows late hands to make the catch even when defenders are close. With his quickness and athleticism, Smith is dangerous with the ball in his hands to rip off more yardage after the catch. Team sources have said that Smith has only one play speed, and they wish he had a second gear.

Smith is undersized as a blocker and needs to get stronger to be more effective against NFL defenders. He won’t be drafted for his blocking and needs to go to a team that wants to use him as a receiver.

In the NFL, Smith could be a good F – movement – tight end to contribute to a passing attack. However given his size and blocking limitations, he will have to work in a platoon with a Y – blocking – tight end. On the other hand, Smith brings lots of versatility because he can line up as an h-back or a wide receiver. He can serve as a chess piece who can be moved around to create mismatches for his offense. I think Smith could be an excellent second-day-value similar to the Redskins’ pick of Jordan Reed in the 2013 NFL Draft.

2018: Ian Thomas
2017: Gerald Everett
2016: Austin Hooper
2015: Clive Walford
2014: Austin Seferian-Jenkins

Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina
Samuel is impressive as a receiver. His speed and play-making skills with the ball in his hands eclipse that he is a really talented wide out. He runs good routes and consistently uses his speed to get separation. The explosive Samuel is very dangerous on quick slants and running go routes down the sideline. When the ball is in the air, Samuel is very adept at tracking it and plays the ball. He high points the ball and times his hands well to make catches over defensive backs. Samuel has soft hands and catches the ball with his hands naturally. Samuel is also an aggressive receiver who isn’t afraid of contact.

For the NFL, Samuel is very versatile. He can line up as an outside receiver and play the X – split end – to challenge teams vertically. Samuel also is dangerous out of the slot and could be a tough receiver to defend on underneath routes. With his size and speed, Samuel also could take some carries out of the backfield. On top of his offensive skills, Samuel is a dynamic returner who should contribute on special teams.

Samuel is my runner-up for top Day 2 value in the 2019 NFL Draft. If he goes to the right team, I think he could be a steal and become a superb NFL wideout.

2018: Equanimeous St. Brown
2017: JuJu Smith-Schuster
2016: Tyler Boyd
2015: Justin Hardy
2014: Jared Abbrederis

Elgton Jenkins, C, Mississippi State
I would say Erik McCoy, Chris Lindstrom or Garrett Bradbury, but I think they all could be first-round picks. Hence, I had to go with a player who I’m not as passionate about but think is going to be a solid pro.

Jenkins is a good interior pass protector. He does a nice job of keeping his head on swivel to be ready to pick up blitzes or games on the inside. He has a good anchor to hold up against bull rushes. With quality feet, athleticism, and his length, Jenkins does a nice job of blocking speed rushers on the inside. As a pro, he should be an asset to double team tackles with a guard given his size, length, quickness, athleticism and technique.

In the ground game, Jenkins is not a road-grader to blast defenders off the ball and roll them out of their gaps. However, he does have very good technique to tie up defenders and sustain his blocks. Jenkins has good hands to maintain his blocks through the whistle. He often turns his defenders and ties them up to keep them from getting tackles.

While I don’t think that Jenkins will become a world beater, I think he is going to be a quality pro who is a dependable starter.

2018: Braden Smith and Martinas Rankin
2017: Dan Feeney
2016: Nick Martin and Le’Raven Clark
2015: Cedric Ogbuehi
2014: Antonio Richardson

2019 NFL Draft Day 2 Values: Offense | 2019 NFL Draft Day 2 Values: Defense
2019 NFL Draft Potential Busts: Offense | 2019 NFL Draft Potential Busts: Defense
2019 NFL Draft Day-Three Sleepers

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