Video: Breaking down the Rams’ draft
Seventh-round selections for the 2018 NFL draft
219. New England (from Cleveland), Danny Etling, qb, LSU.
220. Seattle (from N.Y. Giants through Pittsburgh), Alex McGough, qb, FIU.
221. Indianapolis, Matthew Adams, lb, Houston.
222. Houston, Jermaine Kelly, db, San Jose State.
223. San Francisco (from Tampa Bay through Miami), Jullian Taylor, dt, Temple.
224. Chicago, Javon Wims, wr, Georgia.
225. Minnesota (from Denver through Minnesota and N.Y. Jets), Devante Downs, lb, California.
226. Denver (from N.Y. Jets through Seattle), David Williams, rb, Arkansas.
227. Miami (from San Francisco), Quentin Poling, lb, Ohio.
228. Oakland, Marcell Ateman, wr, Oklahoma State.
229. Miami, Jason Sanders, k, New Mexico.
230. Jacksonville (from Cincinnati), Leon Jacobs, de, Wisconsin.
231. L.A. Rams (from Washington), Travin Howard, lb, TCU.
232. Green Bay, James Looney, de, California.
233. Philadelphia (from Arizona through Kansas City through New England), Jordan Mailata, ot, No college.
234. Carolina (from L.A. Chargers through Buffalo), Andre Smith, lb, North Carolina.
235. Indianapolis (from Seattle through N.Y. Jets), Zaire Franklin, lb, Syracuse.
236. Dallas, Bo Scarbrough, rb, Alabama.
237. Detroit, Nick Bawden, rb, San Diego State.
238. Baltimore, Zach Sieler, de, Ferris State.
239. Green Bay (from Buffalo), Hunter Bradley, ls, Mississippi State.
240. San Francisco (from Kansas City), Richie James, wr, Middle Tennessee.
241. Washington (from L.A. Rams), Greg Stroman, cb, Virginia Tech.
242. Carolina, Kendrick Norton, dt, Miami.
243. New England (from Tennessee through Kansas City), Keion Crossen, db, Western Carolina.
244. L.A. Rams (from Atlanta), Justin Lawler, de, SMU.
245. New Orleans, Will Clapp, g, LSU.
246. Pittsburgh, Joshua Frazier, dt, Alabama.
247. Jacksonville, Logan Cooke, p, Mississippi State.
248. Green Bay (from Minnesota through Seattle), Kendall Donnerson, de, Southeast Missouri State.
249. Cincinnati (from New England), Logan Woodside, qb, Toledo.
250. New England (from Philadelphia through Seattle, New England, Seattle and Philadelphia), Ryan Izzo, te, Flroida State.
251. L.A. Chargers, Justin Jackson, rb, Northwestern.
252. Cincinnati, Rod Taylor, g, Mississippi.
253. Cincinnati, Auden Tate, wr, Florida state.
254. Arizona, Korey Cunningham, ot, Cincinnati.
255. Buffalo (from Tampa Bay), Austin Proehl, wr, North Carolina.
256. Washington (from Atlanta through L.A. Rams), Trey Quinn, wr, SMU.
Rams’ final draft pick is SMU defensive lineman Justin Lawler
The Rams selected Southern Methodist defensive lineman Justin Lawler in the seventh round of the NFL draft with the 244th pick.
Lawler was the third defensive lineman drafted by the Rams, joining Stephen F. Austin’s John Franklin and Rutgers’ Sebastian Joseph.
The 6-foot-4, 265-pound Lawler had 15 1/2 tackles for loss, including 9 1/2 sacks.
Lawler said the way he was deployed in college fits the Rams.
“It was very similar to what the Rams do — I think that’s why we’re such a good fit for each other,” he said. “I was a hand-in-the ground, four-down guy rushing the quarterback and just making plays.
“They let me run free, run loose and similar to what the Rams do with their ends. And we look forward to doing the same thing, having the same success at L.A.”
Justin Lawler, defensive lineman
6 feet 4, 265 pounds, Southern Methodist, Round 7, Pick 244.
Notable: Lawler started 13 games and tied for the national lead with three blocked kicks. He was named first-team All-American Athletic Conference.
Last season: Lawler had 15 1/2 tackles for loss, including 9 1/2 sacks and 10 quarterback hurries for a team that finished 7-6.
Why the Rams drafted him: The Rams are looking to build pass-rushing depth, but it could be difficult for Lawler and others in this draft class to earn a roster spot.
Chargers use their final draft pick to select Northwestern running back Justin Jackson
With their last pick in the 2018 NFL draft, the Chargers addressed a need, selecting Northwestern running back Justin Jackson in the seventh round with the 251st selection.
He was one of the most durable runners in college football over the last four seasons, rushing for more than 1,000 yards in each of his seasons with the Wildcats — one of only nine players in NCAA history to run for that much in four consecutive seasons.
He’s got above-average speed and should compete for playing time with Austin Ekeler behind Melvin Gordon.
Justin Jackson, running back
6 feet, 199 pounds, Northwestern, Round 7, Pick 251
Notable: One of only nine players in NCAA history to rush for at least 1,000 yards four seasons in a row.
Why the Chargers drafted him: The Chargers had a need at running back, and in Jackson, they get a highly productive player from a major conference. Coach Anthony Lynn has been looking to add a “complimentary” back to Gordon, and in Jackson the Chargers get a player who is more than comfortable carrying the ball for a series at a time.
Last season: As a senior, Jackson rushed for 1,311 yards on 287 carries for 11 touchdowns and caught 44 passes for 276 yards.
Rams take another linebacker, TCU’s Travin Howard, in seventh round of NFL draft
The Rams selected Texas Christian linebacker Travin Howard in the seventh round of the NFL draft with the 231st pick.
Howard is the second linebacker drafted by the Rams, after Virginia’s Micah Kiser in the fifth round.
“It was a long wait and a little emotional with my family,” Howard said.
The 6-foot-1, 213-pound Howard became the first player in TCU history to lead the team in tackles for three consecutive seasons. He played safety as a freshman before converting to linebacker.
As a senior he had seven tackles for a loss, including a sack, an interception, seven pass breakups and eight deflections.
Howard described his speed as a strength.
“Just pretty much a ball magnet,” he said.
Howard was teammates at TCU with offensive tackle Joseph Noteboom, who the Rams selected in the third round Friday.
The Rams acquired the 231st pick in a trade with Washington.
Travin Howard, linebacker
6 foot 1, 213 pounds, Texas Christian, Round 7, Pick 231.
Notable: Howard is a converted safety who was the first TCU player to lead the Horned Frogs in tackles for three consecutive seasons.
Last season: Howard made a team-best 108 tackles, including seven for losses, and was voted first-team All-Big 12 Conference for the second consecutive season.
Why the Rams drafted him: Howard is built similar to Mark Barron, a former safety who morphed into an effective hybrid linebacker.
— Gary Klein
Sixth-round selections for the 2018 NFL draft
175. Cleveland, Damion Ratley, wr, Texas A&M.
176. L.A. Rams (from N.Y. Giants), John Kelly, rb, Tennessee.
177. Houston, Duke Ejiofor, de, Wake Forest.
178. New England (from Indianapolis through Cleveland), Christian Sam, lb, Arizona State.
179. N.Y. Jets, Parry Nickerson, cb, Tulane.
180. N.Y. Jets (from Tampa Bay through Minnesota), Foley Fatukasi, dt, UConn.
181. Chicago, Kylie Fitts, de, Utah.
182. Arizona (from Denver), Chris Campbell, cb, Penn State.
183. L.A. Rams (from Miami), Sam Jones, ol, Arizona State.
184. San Francisco, Marcell Harris, s, Florida.
185. Indianapolis (from Oakland), Deon Cain, wr, Clemson.
186. Seattle (from Green Bay), Jake Martin, de, Temple.
187. Buffalo (from Cincinnati), Ray-Ray McCloud, wr, Clemson.
188. Cleveland (from Washington), Simeon Thomas, cb, Louisiana-Lafayette.
189. New Orleans (from Arizona), Kamrin Moore, cb, Boston College.
190. Baltimore, DeShon Elliott, s, Texas.
191. L.A. Chargers, Dylan Campbell, wr, Texas Tech.
192. L.A. Rams (from Seattle through Oakland through Dallas), Jamil Demby, ot, Maine.
193. Dallas, Chris Covington, lb, Indiana.
194. Atlanta (from Detroit through L.A. Rams), Russell Gage, wr, LSU.
195. L.A. Rams (from Buffalo), Sebastian Joseph, dt, Rutgers.
196. Kansas City, Tremon Smith, cb, Central Arkansas.
197. Washington (from Carolina through L.A. Rams), Shaun Dion Hamilton, lb, Alabama.
198. Kansas City (from L.A. Rams through New England), Reginald McKenzie, g, Tennessee.
199. Tennessee, Luke Falk, qb, Washington State.
200. Atlanta, Foye Oluokun, s, Yale.
201. New Orleans, Boston Scott, rb, Louisiana Tech.
202. Tampa Bay (from Pittsburgh), Jack Cichy, lb, Wisconsin.
203. Jacksonville, Tanner Lee, qb, Nebraska.
204. N.Y. Jets (from Minnesota), Trenton Cannon, rb, Virginia State.
205. L.A. Rams (from New England through Cleveland and Washington), Trevon Young, de, Louisville.
206. Philadelphia, Matt Pryor, ot, TCU.
207. Green Bay, Equanimeous St. Brown, wr, Notre Dame.
208. Dallas, Cedrick Wilson, wr, Boise State.
209. Miami (from Kansas City through L.A. Rams), Cornell Armstrong, cb, Southern Miss.
210. New England (from Oakland), Braxton Berrios, wr, Miami.
211. Houston, Jordan Thomas, te, Mississippi State.
212. Baltimore (from Oakland), Greg Senat, ot, Wagner.
213. Minnesota, Colby Gossett, g, Appalachian State.
214. Houston, Peter Kalambayl, de, Stanford.
215. Baltimore (from Baltimore through Tennessee), Bradley Bozeman, c, Alabama.
216. Oakland, Azeem Victor, lb, Washington.
217. Denver (from Oakland through L.A. Rams), Keishawn Bierria, lb, Washington.
218. Minnesota, Ade Aruna, de, Tulane.
Rams add another linebacker, drafting Louisville’s Trevon Young in sixth round
The Rams selected Louisville linebacker Trevon Young in the sixth round of the NFL draft on Saturday, with the 205th pick.
“You finally get that call. I can’t explain the feeling — it’s so great,” Young said.
Young was the fifth defensive player selected by the Rams, joining defensive end John Franklin, tackle Sebastian Joseph and linebackers Micah Kiser and Ogbonnia Okoronkwo.
Young, 6 feet 4 and 258 pounds, sat out the 2016 season because of a hip injury. Last season, he had 12 tackles for losses, including 4 1/2 sacks.
“What I’ll bring to the team is getting pressure on the quarterback,” he said. “Whatever they ask me to do, I’m ready to do.”
Trevon Young, linebacker
6 feet 4, 258 pounds, Louisville, Round 6, Pick 205.
Notable: Young sat out the 2016 season because of a hip injury suffered in the Music City Bowl. He was the recipient of the ACC’s Brian Piccolo Award in 2017 as the conference’s most courageous player.
Last season: Young recorded 12 tackles for losses, including 4 1/2 sacks. He had a career-best 10 tackles in the TaxSlayer Bowl.
Why the Rams drafted him: Wade Phillips said before the draft that the Rams needed linebackers for depth. Young provides an edge-rushing presence.
Seahawks select Shaquem Griffin, UCF linebacker who had a hand amputated when he was 4
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll is known for taking chances on players. So many, from Richard Sherman to Russell Wilson to Doug Baldwin, have worked out.
On Saturday, Carroll and general manager John Schneider spent the 141st overall selection in the NFL draft on linebacker Shaquem Griffin.
That fifth-round choice, announced in Seattle, drew loud cheers from fans at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, where the draft was held. Griffin, whose left hand was amputated when he was 4 years old because of a congenital disorder, has become the feel-good story this year and one of the most popular players in this draft because of his perseverance, outgoing personality and, of course, his talent.
Griffin helped Central Florida go undefeated last season, then blew through the NFL combine with a time of 4.38 seconds in the 40-yard dash, sensational weightlifting work with his prosthesis, and a can-do attitude.
Exactly the sort of player the Seahawks seem to find; they drafted his twin brother, Shaquill, out of UCF last year.
Griffin was at the first two days of the draft, sitting through 100 picks without hearing his name. He returned Saturday afternoon with his family, including Shaquill, with whom he stood for photos wearing a light blue sports jacket and eyeglasses under a Seahawks cap.
“It’s amazing just to be here right now, I couldn’t ask for more,“ Shaquem said. “It’s been a long road coming, but I’m glad I had the opportunity to be here.
“It’s been a really good experience. I would have been crazy to turn an experience down like this. I’m just glad I was one of the selected few to be here.”
Griffin had one of the more unusual ways of finding out he was chosen.
“I was using the restroom and my brother came and tackled me with my cellphone, saying, ‘Answer it, answer it,’ and I looked, and that’s when tears started pouring down,” Griffin explained. “I literally went to use the restroom and that’s when my brother busted in and tackled me. I think I was more scared of him tackling me in the bathroom and not knowing what was happening than anything.”
Griffin received, by far, the biggest cheers of the day — louder even than when the Cowboys’ selections were announced. And he made a promise: “Great things are coming to Seattle.”
Rams choose Rutgers DL Sebastian Joseph in sixth round of NFL draft
The Rams selected Rutgers defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph in the sixth round of the NFL draft with the 195th pick.
“It was a dream come true,” Joseph said.
Joseph is the fourth defensive player selected by the Rams on Saturday, joining Stephen F. Austin defensive lineman John Franklin, Virginia linebacker Micah Kiser and Oklahoma linebacker Ogbonnia Okoronkwo.
As a fifth-year senior at Rutgers, the 6-foot-4, 305-pound Joseph had 4½ tackles for a loss, including 1½ sacks.
Joseph joins a position group that includes Aaron Donald, Ndamukong Suh and Michael Brockers.
“I’m a hard-working guy that loves football,” Joseph said. “I’m obviously excited to get out there and learn from the best defensive linemen in this game.”
The Rams acquired the 195th pick, along with receiver Sammy Watkins, from Buffalo last season in exchange for cornerback E.J. Gaines.
Sebastian Joseph, defensive lineman
6 feet 4, 305 pounds, Rutgers, Round 6, Pick 195.
Notable: Joseph was honorable-mention All-Big Ten Conference in the coaches’ vote in 2017. He made Academic All-Big Ten three times.
Last season: Joseph started 12 games at nose tackle. He made 41 tackles, including 4½ for losses. He recorded 1½ sacks.
Why the Rams drafted him: Joseph provides interior-line depth for a unit that includes nose-tackle types Ndamukong Suh and Tanzel Smart.
Rams add another offensive linemen, Jamil Demby of Maine, in sixth round of NFL draft
The Rams selected Maine offensive lineman Jamil Demby in the sixth round of the NFL draft with the 192nd overall pick.
Demby, 6 feet 5 and 335 pounds, was the third offensive lineman chosen by the Rams, joining Texas Christian tackle Joseph Noteboom and Michigan State center Brian Allen.
At Maine, Demby played in an offense coordinated by Liam Coen, who was hired by the Rams in February as assistant receivers coach.
Jamil Demby, offensive line
6 feet 5, 335 pounds, Maine, Round 6, Pick 192.
Notable: At Maine, Demby played in an offense that was coordinated by Liam Coen, who was hired by the Rams in February as assistant receivers coach.
Last season: emby played in 10 games and was first-team All-Colonial Athletic Assn. for a team that finished 4-6 in 2017.
Why the Rams drafted him: Demby played tackle in college but he projected as a guard in the NFL. He could provide depth behind Rodger Saffold and Jamon Brown.
Chargers add a big receiver in Texas Tech’s Dylan Cantrell in sixth round of NFL draft
In the sixth round, the Chargers added a big wide receiver, selecting 6-foot-3 Dylan Cantrell from Texas Tech with the 191st overall selection.
He was an All-Big 12 Conference honorable mention as a fifth-year senior, catching 71 passes for 816 yards.He also scored seven touchdowns.
If Cantrell can make the team, he would give the Chargers a big-bodied red zone target on the outside to go with last year’s first-round pick, Mike Williams.
Dylan Cantrell, wide receiver
6 feet 3, 226 pounds, Texas Tech, Round 6, Pick 191
Notable: Hails from a town called “Whitehouse” in East Texas.
Why the Chargers drafted him: The Chargers struggled in the red zone a year ago, and a big receiver like Cantrell could help if he’s able to make the team as the Chargers’ fifth receiver. He caught 15 touchdowns in the last two seasons while being a productive player in Texas Tech’s high-powered offense.
Last season: In 13 games Cantrell caught 71 passes for 816 yards and seven touchdowns.
Rams pick Tennessee running back John Kelly in sixth round of NFL draft
The Rams selected Tennessee running back John Kelly in the sixth round of the NFL draft on Saturday with the 176th overall pick.
Kelly is expected to serve as a change-of-pace back behind Todd Gurley, the reigning NFL offensive player of the year, and Malcolm Brown.
Former USC running back Justin Davis also is on the roster.
Kelly, 5 feet 8 and 205 pounds, rushed for 778 yards and nine touchdowns last season as a junior. He caught 37 passes for 299 yards.
He is a former college teammate of New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara, last season’s NFL offensive rookie of the year.
“I just wanted to show my versatility,” he said during a teleconference, adding, “I got a chance to learn from guys like Alvin.”
Kelly is looking forward to working with Gurley.
“I really just can’t wait to be able to learn some of the things he was able to do and be able to compete with him in practice,” Kelly said.
John Kelly, running back
5 feet 10, 216 pounds, Tennessee, Round 6, Pick 176.
Notable: Kelly improved his pass-catching ability in his final season. After totaling only seven receptions in his first two seasons, he had 37 in 2017.
Last season: Kelly rushed for 778 yards and nine touchdowns, and caught 37 passes for 299 yards. He led the Volunteers in rushing yards and receptions.
Why the Rams drafted him: Todd Gurley is the star running back and Malcolm Brown is a dependable backup, but Kelly could provide another pass-catching option.
Fifth-round selections for the 2018 NFL draft
138. Green Bay (from Cleveland), Cole Madison, g, Washington State.
139. N.Y. Giants, RJ McIntosh, dt, Miami.
140. Oakland (from Indianapolis), Maurice Hurst, dt, Michigan.
141. Seattle (from Houston), Shaquem Griffin, lb, UCF.
142. San Francisco (from Denver through Washington), D.J. Reed, cb, Kansas State.
143. New England (from N.Y. Jets through San Francisco), Ja’Whaun Bentley, lb, Purdue.
144. Tampa Bay, Justin Watson, wr, Pennsylvania.
145. Chicago, Bilal Nichols, dt, Delaware.
146. Seattle (from Oakland), Tre Flowers, s, Oklahoma State.
147. RAMS (from Miami through New Orleans, Green Bay and Carolina), Michah Kiser, lb. Virginia.
148. Pittsburgh (from San Francisco), Marcus Allen, s, Penn State.
149. Seattle (from Washington through Denver), Michael Dickson, p, Texas.
150. Cleveland (from Green Bay), Genard Avery, lb, Memphis State.
151. Cincinnati, Davontae Harris, cb, Illinois State.
152. Tennessee (from Arizona through Oakland and Baltimore), Dane Crulkshank, s, Arizona.
153. Detroit, Tyrell Crosby, g, Oregon.
154. Buffalo (from Baltimore), Siran Neal, s, Jacksonville State.
155. CHARGERS, Scott Quessenberry, c, UCLA.
156. Denver (from Seattle through Philadelphia and Seattle), Troy Fumagalli, te, Wisconsin.
157. Minnesota (from Dallas through N.Y. Jets), Tyler Conklin, te, Central Michigan.
158. Cincinnati (from Buffalo), Andrew Brown, dt, Virginia.
159. Indianapolis (from Kansas City through Cleveland, New England and Oakland), Daurice Fountain, wr, Northern Iowa.
160. RAMS (from Rams through Denver), Ogbonnia Okoronkwa, de, Oklahoma.
161. Carolina, Jermaine Carter, lb, Maryland.
162. Baltimore (from Tennessee), Jordan Lasley, wr, UCLA.
163. Washington (from Atlanta through Denver), Tim Settle, dt, Virginia Tech.
164. New Orleans, Natrell Jamerson, s, Wisconsin.
165. Pittsburgh, Jaylen Samuels, te, NC State.
166. Buffalo (from Jacksonville), Wyatt Teller, g, Virginia Tech.
167. Minnesota (from Minnesota through N.Y. Jets), Daniel Carlson, k, Auburn.
168. Seattle (from New England), Jamarco Jones, ot, Ohio State.
169. Indianapolis (from Philadelphia), Jordan Wilkins, rb, Mississippi.
170. Cincinnati, Darius Phillips, cb, Western Michigan.
171. Dallas, Mike White, qb, Western Kentucky.
172. Green Bay, JK Scott, p, Alabama.
173. Oakland (from Dallas), Johnny Townsend, p, Florida.
174. Green Bay, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, wr, South Florida.
Rams get more linebacker depth by drafting Oklahoma’s Ogbonnia Okoronkwo in the fifth round
The Rams selected Oklahoma outside linebacker Ogbonnia Okoronkwo in the fifth round of the NFL draft with the 160th pick.
Okoronkwo is the third defensive player taken by the Rams after Stephen F. Austin defensive end John Franklin was selected in the fourth round and Virginia linebacker Micah Kiser was picked earlier in the fifth.
“When I got the call, tears started dropping out,” Okoronkwo said.
The 6-foot-1, 242-pound Okoronkwo finished his college career with 21 sacks, ranking seventh in Oklahoma history. Last season, he made 17 1/2 tackles for a loss and forced three fumbles.
Okoronkwo is expected to help fill a void left by Robert Quinn, who the Rams traded to the Miami Dolphins in exchange for fourth- and sixth-round picks.
“They see me as an edge guy who can do linebacker things,” Okoronkwo said. “And also like an instant contributor on special teams.”
Okoronkwo described playing for the Rams as “an edge rusher’s dream” with Ndamukong Suh and Aaron Donald set to anchor the interior of the line.
Okoronkwo competed against Texas Christian offensive lineman Joseph Noteboom, whom the Rams selected in the third round, in the Big 12 Conference.
The Rams acquired the 160th pick from Denver in exchange for their 183rd and 217th picks.
Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, linebacker
6 feet 2, 253 pounds, Oklahoma, Round 5, Pick 160.
Notable: Okoronkwo had 21 sacks in four seasons, No. 2 for a linebacker in Sooners history.
Last season: Okoronkwo recorded 17½ tackles for losses, including eight sacks. He was voted co-Big-12 Conference defensive player of the year by league coaches.
Why the Rams drafted him: The Rams are need of an edge rusher to help replace Robert Quinn in defensive coordinator Wade Phillips’ 3-4 scheme.
Rams trade receiver Tavon Austin to the Cowboys for a sixth-round draft pick
Five years after the Rams made Tavon Austin the eighth overall pick in the 2013 draft, the team traded him Saturday to the Dallas Cowboys in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick.
Austin, 27, leaves after catching 194 passes for 1,689 yards and 12 touchdowns during his five seasons with the Rams.
Austin signed a four-year, $42-million contract extension before the 2016 season. But after last season’s unproductive performance, he agreed to rework the deal to what essentially is a one-year contract.
The Rams save about $1 million of salary-cap space by moving Austin. His departure leaves the Rams with receivers Robert Woods, Brandin Cooks, Cooper Kupp, Josh Reynolds, Pharoh Cooper and Mike Thomas on the roster.
The 5-foot-8, 180-pound Austin earned nearly $15 million in salary and roster bonuses last season, but he lost his job as the punt returner and was utilized primarily as a decoy in first-year coach Sean McVay’s offense as the Rams won the NFC West.
Austin’s future with the franchise was uncertain from the time the Rams traded for Sammy Watkins during training camp.
Austin had been unable to participate in offseason workouts, and then suffered a hamstring injury during training camp.
He finished the 2017 season with 13 catches for 47 yards. He rushed for 270 yards and touchdown in 59 carries.
Austin was set to earn $8 million in salary and roster bonuses this season. In March, he agreed to be paid $5 million, with the possibility to earn $3 million through incentives, and drop the final three years of the deal.
Chargers stay local by selecting UCLA center Scott Quessenberry in fifth round of NFL draft
The Chargers finally selected an offensive player in the NFL draft, taking UCLA center Scott Quessenberry in the fifth round with the No. 155 overall pick.
Quessenberry will give the Chargers depth on the interior of their offensive line, where they’ve done a lot of work in the last two seasons by drafting Dan Feeney and Forrest Lamp last year and signing center Mike Pouncey this offseason.
Quessenberry, who grew up a Chargers fan in the San Diego area, participated in the team’s local workout late in the draft evaluation process.
It was the first offensive pick of this draft for the Chargers after taking defensive players in the first four rounds.
Scott Quessenberry, guard/center
6 feet 4, 310 pounds, UCLA, Round 5, Pick 155
Notable: Quessenberry’s brother, David, overcame a cancer diagnosis to play for the Houston Texans.
Why the Chargers drafted him: The Chargers need more depth along their offensive line, and in Quessenberry they add some versatility with a player who can play either center or guard. He could give the team some early insurance with Forrest Lamp coming back from an injury and with Mike Pouncey’s durability a question at this stage of his career.
Last season: Last season, Quessenberry was All-Pac-12 honorable mention after starting all 13 games.
Rams choose Virginia linebacker Micah Kiser in fifth round of NFL draft
The Rams selected Virginia linebacker Micah Kiser in the fifth round of the NFL draft with the 147th pick.
Kiser is the second defensive player taken by the Rams after Stephen F. Austin defensive end John Franklin was selected in the fourth round.
“I’m pumped,” Kiser said. “This is a blessing.”
Kiser, 6-foot-2 and 240 pounds, played inside linebacker at Virginia and also contributed on special teams.
He led the Atlantic Coast Conference in tackles for three consecutive seasons. As a senior he made made 9 1/2 tackles for a loss, including five sacks, and recovered two fumbles.
Kiser described himself as a “really smart linebacker” and could help fill a role left by Alec Ogletree, who the Rams traded to the New York Giants in exchange for two draft picks.
“I just have to come in and do whatever they want me to do,” Kiser said. “Special teams, linebacker. I’m all about the team and just a football player.”
Micah Kiser, linebacker
6 feet 2, 240 pounds, Virginia, Round 5, Pick 147.
Notable: Kiser is the second player in Atlantic Coast Conference history to lead the league in tackles in three consecutive seasons. Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly did it at Boston College.
Last season: Kiser made 145 tackles last season, including 19 against Virginia Tech. He had 11 tackles against Navy in the Military Bowl.
Why the Rams drafted him: After trading Robert Quinn and Alec Ogletree, the Rams are in need of linebackers. Kiser played inside linebacker for the Cavaliers.
Rams select DE John Franklin in fifth round of draft
The Rams selected Stephen F. Austin defensive end John Franklin in the fourth round of the NFL draft with the 135th pick.
“It feels good,” Franklin said. “It was a dream come true.”
Franklin is the first defensive player selected by the Rams. They chose offensive tackle Joseph Noteboom in the second round and center Brian Allen in the third.
Franklin, 6 feet 4 and 283 pounds, had 13½ tackles for losses last season, including 3½ sacks.
Franklin was born in Los Angeles but attended high school in Texas.
He began college playing defensive end but also has played as a tackle and linebacker.
“I’m excited to get to work,” he said.
Fourth-round selections in the 2018 NFL draft
101. Carolina (from Cleveland through Green Bay), Ian Thomas, te, Indiana.
102. Minnesota (from N.Y. Giants through Tampa Bay), Jaylin Holmes, de, Ohio State.
103. Houston, Keke Coutee, wr, Texas Tech.
104. Indianapolis, Nyheim Hines, rb, N.C. State.
105. Cleveland (from Chicago through New England), Antonio Callaway, wr, Florida.
106. Denver, Josey Jewell, lb, Iowa.
107. N.Y. Jets, Chris Herndon, te, Miami.
108. N.Y. Giants (from Tampa Bay), Kyle Lauletta, qb, Richmond.
109. Washington (from San Francisco through Denver), Troy Apke, s, Penn State.
110. Oakland, Nick Nelson, cb, Wisconsin.
111. RAMS (from Miami), Brian Allen, c, Michigan State.
112. Cincinnati, Mark Walton, rb, Miami.
113. Denver (from Washington), DeaSean Hamilton, wr, Penn State.
114. Detroit (from Green Bay through Cleveland and New England), Da’Shawn Hand, de, Alabama.
115. Chicago (from Arizona), Joel Iyiegbuniwe, lb, Western Kentucky.
116. Dallas, Dorance Armstrong, de, Kansas.
117. Tampa Bay (from Detroit through New England), Jordan Whitehead, s, Pittsburgh.
118. Baltimore, Anthony Averett, cb, Alabama.
119. CHARGERS, Kyzir White, s, West Virginia.
120. Seattle, Will Dissly, te, Washington.
121. Buffalo, Taron Johnson, cb, Weber State.
122. Baltimore (from Kansas City), Kenny Young, lb, UCLA.
123. Miami (from Carolina through Cleveland), Durham Smythe, te, Notre Dame.
124. Kansas City (from Rams), Armani Watts, s, Texas A&M.
125. Philadelphia (from Tennessee through Baltimore), Avonte Maddox, db, Pittsburgh.
126. Atlanta, Ito Smith, rb, Southern Miss.
127. New Orleans, Rick Leonard, ot, Florida State.
128. San Francisco (from Pittsburgh), Kentavius Street, de, N.C. State.
129. Jacksonville, Will Richardson, OT, N.C. State.
130. Philadelphia (from Minnesota), Josh Sweat, dl, Florida State.
131. Miami (from New England through Philadelphia), Kalen Ballage, rb, Arizona State.
132. Baltimore (from Philadelphia), Jaleel Scott, wr, New Mexico State.
133. Green Bay, J’Mon Moore, wr, Missouri.
134. Arizona, Chase Edmonds, rb, Fordham.
135. RAMS (from N.Y. Giants), John Franklin-Myers, de, Stephen F. Austin.
136. Carolina (from New England through Rams), Marquis Haynes, de, Mississippi.
137. Dallas, Dalton Schultz, te, Stanford.
Chargers add another defender with fourth-round selection of Kyzir White
The Chargers began Day 3 of the NFL draft the same way they’ve ended the first two days — by taking a defensive player.
The Chargers added another linebacker, taking Kyzir White from West Virginia.
A safety in college, White, the brother of Bears wide receiver Kevin White, has the size (6-foot-2, 218 pounds) to move down to the front seven for the Chargers, most likely to help on the weak side where speed is more valued.
A junior college transfer, White had 94 tackles, 7 1/2 for loss, and three interceptions for the Mountaineers as a senior.
Kyzir White, linebacker
6 feet 2, 218 pounds, West Virginia, Round 4, Pick 119
Notable: His brother, Kevin, was a former first-round pick of the Chicago Bears. Another brother, Ka’Raun, plays receiver for West Virgina.
Why the Chargers drafted him: The biggest weakness on the roster heading into the draft was at linebacker, where the team was painfully thin. After adding Uchenna Nwosu for the strong side, the Chargers went with White to help on the weak side. A safety in college, White already has the size to play linebacker in the NFL. He’ll also be a contributor on special teams.
Rams select Michigan State center Brian Allen in fourth round of NFL draft
The Rams selected Michigan State center Brian Allen in the fourth round of the NFL draft with the 111th pick.
Allen is the second offensive lineman chosen by the Rams, who selected Texas Christian tackle Joseph Noteboom in the third round Friday.
The 6-foot-2, 302-pound Allen played center and guard for Michigan State and was second-team All-Big Ten Conference for three years.
Allen described himself as a “tough, hard-nosed working guy, who’s going to do his job and do what’s expected of him.”
Allen said he was excited about learning from veteran center John Sullivan, whom he watched for many years when Sullivan played for the Minnesota Vikings.
“To be able to be in a room with him and be able to learn from a guy who’s shown he can play at the level he has for as long as he has is something pretty incredible for me,” Allen said, adding, “I definitely will be picking his brain as long as I don’t annoy him too much.”
Brian Allen, center
6 feet 2, 302 pounds, Michigan State, Round 4, Pick 111.
Notable: Allen started 17 games at center, 16 at left guard and five at right guard. He was a three-time Academic All-Big Ten Conference honoree.
Last season: Allen started 13 games at center for a Michigan State team that finished 10-3 and defeated Washington State in the Holiday Bowl.
Why the Rams drafted him: Rams center John Sullivan is entering his 10th NFL season, so Allen can be his understudy and eventual replacement.
NFL draft: Third round picks
1 (65): OAKLAND (from Baltimore): OT Brandon Parker (North Carolina A&T)
2 (66): NEW YORK GIANTS: OLB Lorenzo Carter (Georgia)
3 (67): CLEVELAND (from Indianapolis): DE Chad Thomas (Miami)
4 (68): HOUSTON: S Justin Reid (Stanford)
5 (69): NEW YORK GIANTS (from Tampa Bay): DT B.J. Hill (North Carolina State)
6 (70): SAN FRANCISCO (from Chicago): ILB Fred Warner (Brigham Young)
7 (71): DENVER: RB Royce Freeman (Oregon)
8 (72): NEW YORK JETS: DT Nathan Shepard (Fort Hays State)
9 (73): MIAMI: OLB Jerome Baker (Ohio State)
10 (74): WASHINGTON (from San Francisco): OT Geron Christian (Louisville)
11 (75): KANSAS CITY (from Baltimore): DT Derrick Nnadi (Florida State)
12 (76): PITTSBURGH (from Seattle): QB Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State)
13 (77): CINCINNATI: DE Sam Hubbard (Ohio State)
14 (78): CINCINNATI (from Kansas City): OLB Malik Jefferson (Texas)
15 (79): SEATTLE (from Pittsburgh): DE Rasheem Green (USC)
16 (80): HOUSTON (from Seattle): C Martinas Rankin (Missisppi State)
17 (81): DALLAS: WR Michael Gallup (Colorado State)
18 (82): DETROIT: S Tracy Walker (Louisanna)
19 (83): BALTIMORE: OT Orlando Brown (Oklahoma)
20 (84): CHARGERS: DT Justin Jones (North Carolina State)
21 (85): CAROLINA (from Buffalo): CB Rashaan Gaulden (Tennessee)
22 (86): BALTIMORE (from Kansas City): TE Mark Andrews (Oklahoma)
23 (87): OAKLAND (from Rams): DE Arden Key (LSU)
24 (88): GREEN BAY (from Carolina): OLB Oren Burks (Vanderbilt)
25 (89): RAMS (from Green Bay): OT Joe Noteboom (Texas Christian)
26 (90): ATLANTA: DT Deadrin Senat (South Florida)
27 (91): NEW ORLEANS: WR Tre’Quan Smith (Central Florida)
28 (92): PITTSBURGH: OT Chukwuma Okorafor (Western Michigan)
29 (93): JACKSONVILLE: S Ronnie Harrison (Alabama)
30 (94): Tampa Bay (from Minnesota): OT Alex Cappa (Humboldt State)
31 (95): San Francisco (from New England): S Tarvarius Moore (Southern Mississippi)
32 (96): BUFFALO (from Philadelphia): DT Harrison Phillips (Stanford)
33 (97): ARIZONA (Compensatory): C Mason Cole (Michigan)
34 (98): HOUSTON (Compensatory): TE Jordan Akins (Central Florida)
35 (99): DENVER (Compensatory): CB Isaac Yiadom (Boston College)
36 (100): KANSAS CITY (Compensatory): OLB Dorian O’Daniel (Clemson)
Rams draft TCU offensive tackle Joseph Noteboom with the 89th pick
The Rams finally made their first pick of the NFL draft, selecting Texas Christian offensive tackle Joseph Noteboom on Friday in the third round with the 89th pick.
The 6-foot-5, 306-pound Noteboom said he was excited about joining the Rams and playing for coach Sean McVay.
“It’s fantastic just knowing all the pieces they’ve added, what a great young team it is,” Noteboom said during a teleconference. “And Coach McVay. I think it’s the perfect spot.”
Noteboom is expected to learn at the elbow of veteran left tackle Andrew Whitworth, a Pro Bowl selection last season at age 35.
“I know a lot about Whitworth, watched a lot of him,” Noteboom said. “I’m excited. I’m taking everything he’s telling me. That’s perfect I learn from a pro bowler.”
The Rams went into Friday with the No. 87 pick, but a few minutes before they would have made their pick, they traded it to the Oakland Raiders for the 89th and 217th picks. The 217th pick is a sixth-round compensatory pick.
The Rams did not select a player until the third round because they traded the No. 23 pick to the New England Patriots for wide receiver Brandin Cooks. They had traded their second-round pick to the Buffalo Bills in a 2017 trade for receiver Sammy Watkins.
The Rams have eight remaining picks, three in the fourth round and five in the sixth.
Joseph Noteboom, offensive tackle
6 feet 5, 306 pounds, Texas Christian, Round 3, Pick 89
Notable: Noteboom started every game in his final three seasons at Texas Christian, a streak of 40 games. He played left tackle as a senior and was invited to the Senior Bowl. He also was a four-year Academic All-Big 12 selection.
Last season: Noteboom was honorable-mention All-Big 12 Conference for a TCU team that finished 11-3 and defeated Stanford in the Alamo Bowl.
Why the Rams drafted him: Pro Bowl left tackle Andrew Whitworth is playing at an elite level but is on the far side of his career. The Rams want to groom a possible replacement.
Chargers select N.C. State defensive tackle Justin Jones with the 84th overall pick
The Chargers continued to add to their defense in the early rounds, selecting defensive tackle Justin Jones in the third round of the NFL Draft on Friday.
After beginning last season’s draft by taking offensive players in the first three rounds, they have taken defensive players with six of their last seven picks.
Jones was part of a strong defensive line at North Caronlina State, helping eat up blocks so first-round pick Bradley Chubb could harass quarterbacks.
Jones could challenge for early playing time with starting defensive tackle Corey Liuget suspended for the first four games next season. The Chargers other defensive tackle, Brandon Mebane turned 33 in January.
In 10 games last season, Jones had 34 tackles, including 9.5 for losses, to go with 3.5 sacks and a fumble recovery.
Justin Jones, defensive tackle
6-foot-3, 309 pounds, North Carolina State, Round 3, Pick 84
Notable: Played alongside first-round pick Bradley Chubb and third-round pick B.J. Hill at North Carolina State. He committed to the school on the same day as Chubb.
Last season: Jones had 34 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and one fumble recovery in 10 games for N.C. State.
Why the Chargers drafted him: The Chargers continued to add to the defense in the third round, grabbing a potential replacement for Brandon Mebane down the road. Jones has shown some real disruptive ability, although he’s been dinged for being inconsistent. The Chargers will need someone to play snaps early in the season with Mebane’s mate on the inside, Corey Liuget, serving a four-game suspension for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy.
NFL draft: Second round picks
1 (33): CLEVELAND: T Austin Corbett (Nevada)
2 (34): NEW YORK GIANTS: G Will Hernandez (UTEP)
3 (35): CLEVELAND (from Houston): RB Nick Chubb (Georgia)
4 (36): INDIANAPOLIS: LB Darius Leonard (South Carolina State)
5 (37): INDIANAPOLIS (from New York Jets): G Braden Smith (Auburn)
6 (38): TAMPA BAY: RB Ronald Jones II (USC) — Jones, who broke Charles White’s freshman rushing record at USC, made good on his promising career start. He ran for 1,550 yards and 19 touchdowns last season. What’s more, he caught 14 passes for 187 yards and a touchdown.
7 (39): CHICAGO: C James Daniels (Iowa)
8 (40): DENVER: WR Courtland Sutton (Southern Methodist)
9 (41): TENNESSEE (from Oakland): OLB Harold Landry (Boston College)
10 (42): MIAMI: TE Mike Gesicki (Penn State)
11 (43): DETROIT (from New England): RB Kerryon Johnson (Auburn)
12 (44): SAN FRANCISCO (from Washington): WR Dante Pettis (Washington)
13 (45): GREEN BAY: CB Josh Jackson (Iowa)
14 (46): KANSAS CITY (from Cincinnati): DE Breeland Speaks (Missisippi)
15 (47): ARIZONA: WR Christian Kirk (Texas A&M)
16 (48): CHARGERS: OLB Uchenna Nwosu (USC) — Nwosu had 75 tackles and 9.5 sacks last season for USC, making him one of the better pass-rushing linebackers in the draft. The 6-foot-2, 251-pound Nwosu impressed the Chargers with a strong showing at his pro day at USC
17 (49): PHILADELPHIA (from Indianapolis): TE Dallas Goedert (South Dakota State)
18 (50): DALLAS: G Connor Williams (Texas)
19 (51): CHICAGO (from New England): WR Anthony Miller (Memphis)
20 (52): INDIANAPOLIS (from Philadelphia): DE Kemoko Turay (Rutgers)
21 (53): TAMPA BAY (from Buffalo): CB M.J. Stewart (North Carolina)
22 (54): CINCINNATI (from Kansas City): S Jessie Bates III (Wake Forest)
23 (55): CAROLINA: CB Donte Jackson (LSU)
24 (56): NEW ENGLAND (from Tampa Bay): CB Duke Dawson (Florida)
25 (57): OAKLAND (from Tennessee): DT P.J. Hall (Sam Houston State)
26 (58): ATLANTA: CB Isaiah Oliver (Colorado)
27 (59): WASHINGTON (from San Francisco): RB Derrius Guice (LSU)
28 (60): PITTSBURGH: WR James Washington (Oklahoma State)
29 (61): JACKSONVILLE: WR D.J. Chark (LSU)
30 (62): MINNESOTA: T Brian O’Neill (Pittsburgh)
31 (63): TAMPA BAY (from New England): CB Carlton Davis (Auburn)
32 (64): INDIANAPOLIS (from Cleveland): DE Tyquan Lewis (Ohio State)
Chargers draft Uchenna Nwosu out of USC with 48th pick in draft
The Chargers, in need of help at linebacker, selected Uchenna Nwosu from USC with the No. 48 pick in the NFL draft.
Nwosu had 75 tackles and 9.5 sacks last season for USC, making him one of the better pass-rushing linebackers in the draft.
He joins Derwin James as defensive players selected in the first two rounds by the Chargers. A year ago, the team took three-straight offensive players before selecting Rayshawn Jenkins in the fourth round.
The 6-foot-2, 251-pound Nwosu impressed the Chargers with a strong showing at his pro day at USC and attended the team’s local workout, even though he didn’t work out at the Chargers’ facility.
Nwosu is from Carson, near the Chargers’ temporary stadium, where he starred for Narbonne High before attending USC.
He should get an early opportunity to contribute with the Chargers thin at linebacker.
Uchenna Nwosu, linebacker
6 foot 2, 251 pounds, USC, Round 2, Pick 48.
Notable: From Carson and Narbonne High, he’s the first hometown draft pick of the Los Angeles Chargers.
Last season: James had 75 tackles, 11.5 for losses, 9.5 sacks, 13 passes defended and an interception.
Why the Chargers drafted him: Nwosu is a big, physical linebacker with better-than-expected skills in pass defense. He still has a lot of room to grow as a player after picking up the game late in high school. He’s a big-time tackler, giving the Chargers some physicality they need at linebacker. Overall, it was one of the biggest positional needs, and Nwosu should get a chance to step in right away and play.
New Ravens QB Lamar Jackson says he has chips on ‘both shoulders’ after dropping to No. 32 in the draft
Lamar Jackson is a Heisman Trophy winner who rushed for more than 1,500 yards and passed for more than 3,500 yards in two different seasons.
But the former Louisville quarterback had to wait until No. 32 — the last first-round pick of the 2018 NFL draft — before his name was called. The Baltimore Ravens traded up, with the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles, to make the pick.
When asked — or almost asked — if he’s motivated by doubts over how well his skills will translate to the pro game, Jackson politely told reporters Thursday night:
“You don’t even have to finish the questions. There is a chip on my shoulder, both shoulders, yes sir,” he said. “It’s just motivation. I’m not mad, it’s just motivation to go into the season ready to play.”
Jackson also had a promise for the team that did step up and draft him. “They’re going to get a Super Bowl out of me,” he told the NFL Network’s Deion Sanders. “Believe that.”
Though it looks like Jackson is the Ravens’ quarterback of the future, coach John Harbaugh said not to assume that the future is now.
“Joe Flacco is our quarterback,” Harbaugh said of the onetime Super Bowl MVP whose 10-year NFL career appears to be in decline. “That’s the thing we have to remember. Lamar’s going to have a great chance to develop.”
All the trades from Day 1 of the 2018 NFL draft
1. Tampa Bay traded its first- (No. 7) and seventh-round (No. 255) picks to Buffalo for the Bills’ first- (No. 12) and second-round (No. 53 and No. 56) picks. Buffalo selected Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming at No. 7. Tampa Bay selected Vita Vea, DT, Washington, and received picks No. 53 and No. 56.
2. Oakland traded its first-round (No. 10) to Arizona for the Cardinals’ first- (No. 15), third- (No. 79), fifth-round (No. 152) picks. Arizona selected Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA. Oakland selected Kolton Miller, OT, UCLA, and received picks No. 79 (Round 3) and No. 152 (Round 5).
3. Green Bay traded its first-round (No. 14) to New Orleans for the Saints’ first- (No. 27) and fifth-round (No. 147) picks and a 2019 first-round pick. New Orleans selected Marcus Davenport, DE, Texas San Antonio. Green Bay traded the No. 27 pick to Seattle and received selection No. 147 (Round 5).
4. Baltimore traded its first- (No. 16) and fifth-round (No. 154) picks to Buffalo for the Bills’ first- (No. 22) and third-round (No. 65) picks. Buffalo selected Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech., at No. 16. Baltimore traded the No. 22 pick to Tennessee and received selection No. 65 (Round 3).
5. Seattle traded its first- (No. 18) and seventh-round (No. 248) picks to Green Bay for the Packers’ first- (No. 27), third- (No. 76) and sixth-round (No. 186) picks. Green Bay selected Jaire Alexander, CB, Louisville, at No. 18 and received pick No. 248 (Round 7). Seattle selected Rashaad Penny, RB, San Diego State and received picks No. 76 (Round 3) and No. 186 (Round 6).
6. Oakland traded its third-round (No. 75) pick to Pittsburgh for WR Martavis Bryant. Pittsburgh received pick No. 75 (Round 3).
7. Baltimore traded its first- (No. 22) and sixth-round (No. 215) picks to Tennessee for the Titans’ first- (No. 25) and fourth-round (No. 125) picks. Tennessee selected Rashaan Evans, LB, Alabama at No. 22, and received pick No. 215 (Round 6). Baltimore selected Hayden Hurst, TE, South Carolina at No. 25 and traded pick No. 125 (Round 4) to Philadelphia.
8. Philadelphia traded its first- (No. 32) and fourth-round (No. 132) picks to Baltimore for the Ravens’ second- (No. 52) and fourth-round (No. 125) picks and a 2019 second-round pick. Baltimore selected Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville and received pick No. 132 (Round 4). Philadelphia received picks No. 52 (Round 2) and No. 125 (Round 4).
Five quarterbacks taken in first round, among highest
Most quarterbacks selected in the first round of the NFL draft since 1970:
1. Indianapolis, JOHN ELWAY, Stanford
7. Kansas City, TODD BLACKLEDGE, Penn State
14. Buffalo, JIM KELLY, Miami
15. New England, TONY EASON, Illinois
24. N.Y. Jets, KEN O’BRIEN, UC Davis
27. Miami, DAN MARINO, Pittsburgh
1. Cleveland, BAKER MAYFIELD, Oklahoma
3. N.Y. Jets, SAM DARNOLD, USC
7. Buffalo, JOSH ALLEN, Wyoming
10. Arizona, JOSH ROSEN, UCLA
32. Baltimore, LAMAR JACKSON, Louisville
1. Cleveland, TIM COUCH, Kentucky
2. Philadelphia, DONOVAN McNABB, Syracuse
3. Cincinnati, AKILI SMITH, Oregon
11. Minnesota, DAUNTE CULPEPPER, Central Florida
12. Chicago, CADE McNOWN, UCLA
1. Indianapolis, ANDREW LUCK, Stanford
2. Washington, ROBERT GRIFFIN III, Baylor
8. Miami, RYAN TANNEHILL, Texas A&M
22. Cleveland, BRANDON WEEDEN, Oklahoma State
1. Carolina, CAM NEWTON, Auburn
8. Tennessee, JAKE LOCKER, Washington
10. Jacksonville, BLAINE GABBERT, Missouri
12. Minnesota, CHRISTIAN PONDER, Florida State
1. x-San Diego, ELI MANNING, Mississippi
4. x-N.Y. Giants, PHILIP RIVERS, North Carolina State
11. Pittsburgh, BEN ROETHLISBERGER, Miami (Ohio)
22. Buffalo, J.P. LOSMAN, Tulane
x-traded for each other.
1. Cincinnati, CARSON PALMER, USC
7. Jacksonville, BYRON LEFTWICH, Marshall
19. Baltimore, KYLE BOLLER, California
22. Chicago, REX GROSSMAN, Florida
1. Tampa Bay, VINNY TESTAVERDE, Miami
6. St. Louis, KELLY STOUFFER, Colorado State
13. Atlanta, CHRIS MILLER, Oregon
14. Chicago, JIM HARBAUGH, Michigan
NFL draft: First round pick-by-pick breakdown
1. CLEVELAND: QB Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma) — Mayfield, a onetime Texas Tech walk-on, rounded into a somewhat undersized phenom, winning the Heisman Trophy, Maxwell Award, Davey O’Brien Award and a slew of other honors. The Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year completed 70.5% of his passes, with 43 touchdowns and just six interceptions.
Sam Farmer’s comment: Cleveland throws a curveball, taking the playmaking Mayfield over Sam Darnold. He’s the first 6-foot-1 quarterback taken No. 1 since Michael Vick in 2001.
2. NEW YORK GIANTS: RB Saquon Barkley (Penn State) – Barkley, whose great-uncle was former boxing champion Iran Barkley, is regarded by many scouts as the top athlete in this class. He plays big in big games, such as when he ran for 204 yards and two touchdowns in a shootout loss to USC in the Rose Bowl.
Farmer’s comment: The Giants are committed to 37-year-old Eli Manning, so they pass on a quarterback and take a player who can help them right away. Barkley is the best football player in the draft.
3. NEW YORK JETS (from Indianapolis): QB Sam Darnold, USC – Darnold was first-team All-Pac 12 selection last fall, throwing for 4,143 yards and 26 touchdowns and completing 63.1% of his passes. Turnovers have been an issue, both interceptions and fumbles, but he has been working on protecting the ball better with his left hand.
Farmer’s comment: Jets traded up and got their man. Jets have Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater, so Darnold likely won’t be pressed into action right away.
4. CLEVELAND (from Houston): CB Denzel Ward, Ohio State – A first-team All-American, Ward had 37 tackles last year, a pair of interceptions, and 15 pass breakups.
Farmer’s comment: Another surprise: Browns bypass defensive end Bradley Chubb to grab a shutdown corner from their home state.
5. DENVER: DE Bradley Chubb, North Carolina State – Chubb earned first-team All-America and All-ACC honors last season, in addition to winning the Hendricks (best defensive end) and Bronko Nagurski (best defender) awards. He had 26 tackles for loss, second in the FBC, had 10 sacks and forced three fumbles.
Farmer’s comment: Broncos get a bookend for Von Miller, challenge the Chargers for the best edge-rushing duo in the AFC West.
6. INDIANAPOLIS (from New York Jets): G Quenton Nelson, Notre Dame – Nelson is widely regarded as the best blocker in this draft. One college teammate compared running behind him to “running behind a tow truck.”
Farmer’s comment: The Colts finally get some protection for Andrew Luck, who has been knocked around more than any recent QB. And from in-state.
7. BUFFALO (from Tampa Bay): QB Josh Allen, Wyoming – Allen might have the strongest arm in this draft class, and prototypical size at 6-5, 237 pounds. But it concerned some teams that he completed just 56.3% of his passes last season and finished 72nd in the country in passing efficiency.
Farmer’s comments: Bills, who need a future QB beyond AJ McCarron, give up two second-rounders for Allen. His big arm can cut through that wind.
8. CHICAGO: LB Roquan Smith, Georgia – Smith won the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker and has signed an endorsement deal with Nike. He had an outstanding game in the Rose Bowl.
Farmer’s comment: A franchise defined by its middle linebacker picked up another monster for the Midway. Smith is a sideline-to-sideline star when it comes to making plays.
9. SAN FRANCISCO: OT Mike McGlinchey, Notre Dame – McGlinchey is a first cousin of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan. He started his Notre Dame as a right tackle, but moved to the left side and became a fixture of that offensive line.
Farmer’s comment: The left side of Notre Dame’s offensive line is off the board. The 49ers are beefing up protection for their big investment, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.
10. ARIZONA (from Oakland): QB Josh Rosen, UCLA – Once a junior tennis prodigy, Rosen instantly took to football and is widely regarded as the best pure passer in this draft class. He overcame a shoulder injury that had sidelined him earlier in his UCLA career to bounce back with some strong performances last season, including four touchdowns and 491 yards passing in an astounding 45-44 comeback victory Texas A&M. The Bruins scored 35 unanswered points in that win.
Farmer’s comment: The Cardinals trade up with Oakland to take the best passer in the draft. A dozen years earlier, Arizona used the No. 10 pick on USC’s Matt Leinart.
11. MIAMI: S Minkah Fitzpatrick, Alabama – Fitzpatrick moved from corner to safety in 2016 when teammate Eddie Jackson was injured. He set a school record with four pick-sixes.
Farmer’s comment: Versatile enough to play safety or corner.With Fitzpatrick in the secondary, the Dolphins can move T.J. McDonald to linebacker.
12. TAMPA BAY (from Buffalo): DT Vita Vea, Washington – The Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year last season, Vea had 43 tackles (5½ for loss), 3½ sacks, and four pass deflections. He is extremely agile for a 347-pound man.
Farmer’s comment: The best Buccaneers team were built around their defensive lines. Vea is astoundingly athletic for his huge size.
13. WASHINGTON: DT Da’Ron Payne, Alabama – Payne took the torch from Jonathan Allen as Alabama’s top playmaker in the middle. He had 53 tackles with a sack, an interception, and three pass break-ups last season. He had a spectacular performance against Georgia in the national championship game.
Farmer’s comment: The Redskins took Payne’s college teammate, defensive end Jonathan Allen, in the first round last year. They are reconstituting that Alabama defensive front in DC.
14. NEW ORLEANS (from Green Bay): DE Marcus Davenport, Texas San Antonio – In the past two seasons, Davenport had 122 tackles with 15 sacks and four forced fumbles.
Farmer’s comment: In a division loaded with star quarterbacks, the Saints need to bring the heat. Davenport is raw but, as the Saints see it, has freakish abilities.
15. OAKLAND (from Arizona): OT Kolton Miller, UCLA – The 6-9, 309-pound Miller has outstanding size and remarkable footwork for such a big man. He was a second-team All-Pac-12 selection last season and protected Josh Rosen’s blind side.
Farmer’s comment: The Raiders have an heir apparent to left tackle Donald Penn. Bay Area teams take the two best tackles off the board.
16. BUFFALO (from Baltimore): LB Tremaine Edmunds, Virginia Tech – An All-ACC pick in 2017, Edmunds had a team-high 109 tackles, 14 for loss, with 5½ sacks and three forced fumbles.
Farmer’s comment: Edmunds, who doesn’t turn 20 until next week, has a grown-up responsibility in giving the Buffalo defense a boost. Has the (big) size that Bills like.
17. CHARGERS: S Derwin James, Florida State – A second-team All-America selection last season, James had 84 tackles (5½ for loss), 11 pass breakups and a blocked kick. He skipped the Independence Bowl to prepare for the draft.
Farmer’s comment: James is looking to follow in the footsteps of fellow FSU DBs Xavier Rhodes and Jalen Ramsey. James is the highest-drafted safety in school history.
18. GREEN BAY (from Seattle): CB Jaire Alexander, Louisville – Coming off a tremendous 2016 season, Alexander dealt with leg and hand injuries last fall but still earned honorable mention All-ACC. He can return punts, too.
Farmer’s comment: Fancy footwork by the Packers, getting another first-rounder next year and trading back up to give new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine a ball-hawking prize for his secondary.
19. DALLAS: LB Leighton Vander Esch, Boise State – Vander Esch was defensive player of the year in the Mountain West Conference, and was MVP of the league’s championship game with 16 tackles and a game-clinching interception.
Farmer’s comment: The 255-pound Vander Esch is quick enough to stay on the field on passing downs. He and Jalen Smith will form the core of future Cowboys defenses.
20. DETROIT: C Frank Ragnow, Arkansas – Considered by many scouts the best center in this draft class, Ragnow missed the second half of his senior season with a severe high ankle sprain that required surgery.
Farmer’s comment: Ragnow can help with the league’s worst run game, and an offense that gave up 47 sacks, 24th in the NFL. Can play guard, but most likely center.
21. CINCINNATI (from Bills): C Billy Price, Ohio State – Winner of the Remington Trophy as the nation’s top center, Price started 55 consecutive games at Ohio State, tying a school record, and was named a unanimous first-team All-American.
Farmer’s comment: Back to back centers. Price, who doesn’t have to move out of state, can step in to replace Russell Bodine, who left in free agency.
22. TENNESSEE (from Baltimore): LB Rashaan Evans, Alabama – A second-team All-SEC pick, Evans led his team with 74 tackles, 13 of them behind the line of scrimmage, had six sacks and broke up three passes.
Farmer’s comment: Evans can slide in next to Wesley Woodyard, replacing Avery Williamson, who left for the Jets. A gift for defensive coordinator Dean Pees.
23. NEW ENGLAND (from Rams): OL Isaiah Wynn, Georgia – One of the selling points of Wynn is his versatility. He began his college career as a tight end, and played left tackle for the bulk of last season. He’ll be a guard in the NFL.
Farmer’s comment: Wynn, who’s a little banged up, played tackle in college but is likely a guard for the Patriots. Key to protect 40-year-old Tom Brady.
24. CAROLINA: WR D.J. Moore, Maryland – The Big Ten Receiver of the Year last season, Moore caught passes from four different quarterbacks, making a school-record 80 catches for 1,033 yards and eight touchdowns.
Farmer’s comment: The Panthers see the hard-charging Moore is a new version of Steve Smith, a star in their passing game for so many years.
25. BALTIMORE: TE Hayden Hurst, South Carolina – A former pitcher who was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2012 (and had Tommy John surgery in eighth grade), Hurst is widely regarded as the best tight end in this class.
Farmer’s comment: The Ravens traded back twice in the first round to pick up more selections, and they still got the tight end they were seeking to help Joe Flacco.
26. ATLANTA: WR Calvin Ridley, Alabama – Ridley didn’t put up huge numbers in Alabama’s run-based system, but many scouts regard him as the top receiver in this draft. He earned first-time All-SEC honors last season with 63 catches for 967 yards and five touchdowns.
Farmer’s comment: The Falcons break with tradition to help Matt Ryan. In each of their last three drafts, they used their top two picks on defensive players. Taylor Gabriel and Andre Roberts left in free agency.
27. SEATTLE: RB Rashaad Penny, San Diego State — Penny led the nation with 2,248 yards rushing and finished fifth in Heisman voting. The first-team All-American scored 23 touchdowns last season in 289 carries.
Farmer’s comment: The Seahawks are coming off a season in which they had one rushing touchdown by a tailback, and their leading ground gainer at that position was Mike Davis with 240 yards. (QB Russell Wilson had 586.)
28. PITTSBURGH: S Terrell Edmunds, Virginia Tech — The brother of Tremaine Edmunds, drafted 16th by Buffalo, Terrell began his college career as a corner but moved to safety where he developed a knack for making big plays.
Farmer’s comment: This marked the first time the Steelers took a safety in the first round since Troy Polamalu in 2003. Pittsburgh has reworked its secondary.
29. JACKSONVILLE: DT Taven Bryan, Florida – The son of a Navy Seal, Bryan is coming off his most productive season, including 37 tackles (six for loss) and four sacks.
Farmer’s comment: The vibrant young Jaguars defense just got a little younger. The challenge now is to see if Bryan can step into the Calais Campbell role. Those are big cleats to fill.
30. MINNESOTA: CB Mike Hughes, Central Florida – A defensive back and punt returner, Hughes had 44 tackles, four interceptions (including a pick-six), and a team-high 11 pass breakups.
Farmer’s comment: With the future cloudy for Terence Newman and Mackensie Alexander, the Vikings opted to go corner over their need at offensive line.
31. NEW ENGLAND: RB Sony Michel, Georgia – Michel started just two games for the Bulldogs in 2017 but made the most of his opportunities. He ran for 1,227 yards in 156 carries – 7.9 yards per attempt – and scored 16 touchdowns on the ground.
Farmer’s comment: The Patriots took their second Georgia Bulldog of the first round. The tough and versatile Michel could be the next Dion Lewis.
32. BALTIMORE (from Philadelphia): QB Lamar Jackson, Louisville – After winning the Heisman Trophy in 2016, Jackson returned and had a strong showing as a junior. He was the Atlantic Coast Conference Offensive Player of the Year, throwing for 3,660 yards and 27 touchdowns with 10 interceptions.
Farmer’s comment: Some nifty footwork by the Ravens allowed them to bookend the draft with a quarterback, and an eventual replacement for Flacco
Ryan Shazier walks onto draft stage to announce Steelers’ first round selection
Injured Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier limped slowly onto the stage at the NFL draft and announced Pittsburgh’s first-round pick less than five months after a spine injury.
Shazier’s appearance Thursday night was a surprise.
“That’s a huge lift not only for him but for us,” Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert said. “To see where he has come from to where he is and knowing where he might be able to go, it’s beyond inspirational.”
The Pro Bowl linebacker has already been ruled out for 2018 while recovering from spine stabilization surgery that has put his career in jeopardy. Shazier had surgery Dec. 6, two days after getting hurt in a victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.
After getting on stage and being introduced by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, fans inside AT&T Stadium gave Shazier strong applause. Shazier then called out the name of safety Terrell Edmunds of Virginia Tech, the 28th overall pick by the Steelers.
Edmunds’ younger brother, linebacker Tremaine Edmunds, also of Virginia Tech, was selected 16th overall by Buffalo. It’s the first time brothers have gone in the first round of the same draft.
An Ohio State fan favorite, Shazier visited his alma mater’s spring game two weeks ago and stood without assistance to cheers from the crowd.
Shazier, an honorary captain of one of the squads, drove a golf cart to midfield and climbed out to stand briefly to fire up the crowd. He then embraced the other honorary captain, former Ohio State cornerback and current Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins, and Ohio State coach Urban Meyer.
UCLA teammates celebrate at NFL draft
Chargers select Derwin James with No. 17 pick
The Chargers entered the draft without many traditional, clear-cut needs – with a single exception.
The team hadn’t re-signed starting safety Tre Boston, who played virtually every defensive snap last season, and were talking about using second-year players Rayshawn Jenkins or Desmond King on the back end of their defense.
Those questions and options got erased Thursday, when Florida State safety Derwin James slid down the board into the team’s lap — giving them a plug-and-play safety who perfectly fits into defensive coordinator Gus Bradley’s system.
James, who was projected by most pundits to be picked in the top 10, stayed on the board as runs on quarterback, offensive tackle and defensive tackle pushed him into the Chargers’ range.
At the combine, James ran a 4.47 40-yard dash and recorded a 40-inch vertical.
He was a second-team All-American in 2017.
A year ago, the team passed on safety Malik Hooker from Ohio State in the first, taking wide receiver Mike Williams instead.
Here is a little more on the Chargers’ new safety.
Derwin James, safety
6 foot 2, 215 pounds, Florida State, Round 1, Pick 17
Notable: Nicknamed “Pooh Bear” by his mother because he was born incredibly hairy and plump.
Why the Chargers drafted him: One of the biggest needs on the Chargers defense was at safety, where the team seemed content to let last year’s starter, Tre Boston, walk in free agency. James’ reputation as a leader is one of the most noticeable traits in the entire draft. He gives the team a big, physical safety. The Chargers capitalized on James, one of the top-rated defenders in the draft, falling thanks to a run on quarterbacks and offensive tackles.
Last season: James had 84 tackles, 2 interceptions and 11 pass deflections.
Kolton Miller selected with 15th pick by Oakland Raiders
UCLA offensive lineman Kolton Miller was selected by the Oakland Raiders with the 15th pick in the NFL raft.
The Raiders have an heir apparent to left tackle Donald Penn.
The 6-9, 309-pound Miller has outstanding size and remarkable footwork for such a big man. He was a second-team All-Pac-12 selection last season and protected Josh Rosen’s blind side.
Josh Rosen selected No. 10 by the Arizona Cardinals
UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen was selected by the Arizona Cardinals with the 10th pick in the NFL draft.
The Cardinals traded up five spots to select Rosen.
Rosen was the fourth quarterback chosen. The Cleveland Browns took Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield of Oklahoma first, the New York Jets selected USC quarterback Sam Darnold with the third pick, and the Buffalo Bills traded up seven spots to select Josh Allen with the fifth pick.
“I just want to put some pads on get to work,” Rosen said.
Rosen is the first Bruins quarterback drafted since the Green Bay Packers selected Brett Hundley in the fifth round in 2015. He is the first UCLA quarterback selected in the first round since Cade McNown was selected 12th by the Chicago Bears in 1999. Troy Aikman was selected first overall by the Dallas Cowboys in 1989, Tommy Maddox 25th by the Denver Broncos in 1992.
Rosen, 6-feet, 4 inches and 226 pounds, was a three-year starter for the Bruins.
He completed 60.9% of his passes for 9.340 yards and 59 touchdowns, with 26 interceptions.
Rosen, who played at Bellflower St. John Bosco High, burst onto the college scene in the first game of the 2015 season, when he completed 28 of 35 passes for 351 yards and three touchdowns.
Rosen suffered a shoulder injury during the 2016 season and underwent surgery.
He played in 11 games last season, passing for 26 touchdowns, with 10 interceptions.
Baker Mayfield goes No. 1 to Cleveland Browns
It was a Cleveland curveball.
The Browns took a quarterback with the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft, but it wasn’t USC’s Sam Darnold, the odds-on favorite to go first for the better part of three months.
Instead, Cleveland called the name of Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield, who seemed to gather momentum in recent weeks.
The 6-foot-1 Mayfield completed more than 70% of his passes the past two seasons with a combined 83 touchdowns and just four interceptions.
Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen was also in the mix to be selected No. 1.
Darnold was looking to join Carson Palmer (2003) as the only USC quarterbacks to be drafted first overall.
Sam Darnold goes No. 3 to the New York Jets
USC quarterback Sam Darnold was selected by the New York Jets with the third pick in the NFL draft.
Darnold is the highest drafted USC quarterback since Mark Sanchez was chosen fifth by the Jets in 2009.
Darnold was projected by some to be the first USC quarterback to be chosen first overall since 2003, when the Cincinnati Bengals selected Heisman Trophy winner Carson Palmer.
But the Cleveland Browns selected Heisman winner Baker Mayfield with the first pick. The New York Giants then selected Penn State running Saquon Barkley.
The 6-foot-3, 221-pound Darnold started most of the last two seasons for the Trojans after redshirting in 2015.
He completed 64.9% of his passes for 7,229 yards and 57 touchdowns, with 22 interceptions.
Darnold, who played at San Clemente High, saw his draft stock soar after the 2017 Rose Bowl, when he completed 33 of 53 passes for five touchdowns in USC’s 52-49 victory over Penn State.
Last season, Darnold passed for 4,143 yards and 26 touchdowns, with 13 interceptions.
Farmer: It is looking like Baker Mayfield as top pick
Team-by-team draft needs: NFC West and AFC West
The NFL draft will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Arlington, Texas. Times NFL writer Sam Farmer examines team needs by division.
Quarterbacks Rosen and Darnold among the local players expected to be drafted this week
There are several players from two major schools in Southern California expected to be chosen in this week’s NFL draft. Among them:
Sam Darnold, QB, USC: Could wind up being the No. 1 overall pick by the Cleveland Browns. If so, he would join Carson Palmer as the only USC quarterbacks to be taken first overall.
Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA: Plenty of teams are enamored with the quarterback who’s widely considered the best pure passer in this class. There’s a good chance when the draft begins that he’ll be selected among the first five picks.
Mock draft: NFL beat writers make picks for the teams they cover
Reporters who cover their teams on a daily basis took a crack at predicting how the first round will unfold in The Times’ annual beat writers’ mock draft. Each reporter made a pick and gives a rationale for that selection.
Team-by-team draft needs: NFC South and AFC South
The NFL draft will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Chicago. Times NFL writer Sam Farmer examines team needs by division.
Team-by-team draft needs: NFC East and AFC East
The NFL draft will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Arlington, Texas. Times NFL writer Sam Farmer examines team needs by division.
Team-by-team draft needs: NFC North and AFC North
The NFL draft will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Arlington, Texas. Times NFL writer Sam Farmer examines team needs by division.
Chargers plan for every NFL draft scenario, but be prepared for surprises
If the NFL draft was held in a vacuum — no surprises, no trades up, no crazy reaches and no cascading falls — the Chargers would know who they’re taking with the No. 17 pick of the first round Thursday evening.
The evaluations are done. The grades are in.
But it absolutely, 100% doesn’t work that way, and that’s why in the final hours leading up to this thing, Chargers general manager Tom Telesco and his staff don’t know who they’ll select first.
In the final few days of contemplation, Telesco and staff have been running through scenarios; doing mock drafts to try to best prepare.
Earlier this week, Telesco assigned scouts and coaches to take control of a team and study the roster needs so they could hold a mock draft together.
Unless Rams deal, they will be observers of NFL draft until Day 2, Round 3
Though they are set at quarterback, and without a first-round pick in the NFL draft for the second year in a row, Rams general manager Les Snead, coach Sean McVay and the scouting and personnel staffs will still pay attention Thursday night when the three-day draft begins at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Snead said this week that it would be fun to sit back and “actually see how that whole top five, all the quarterback drama plays out.”
The Rams also will monitor what might have been.
Earlier this month, they gave up the 23rd pick to acquire receiver Brandin Cooks from the New England Patriots.
Mock draft: Sam Darnold should go No. 1 today
A look at Sam Farmer’s predictions on how the first round of the NFL draft should go today:
1. CLEVELAND; Sam Darnold, QB, USC; Josh Allen and Baker Mayfield are considerations here, but Darnold is the safest bet for a club that hasn’t gotten QB right.
2. NEW YORK GIANTS; Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State; The Giants, committed to 37-year-old Eli Manning, bypass a quarterback and take a player who can help them win right away.
3. NEW YORK JETS; Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma; If the Browns don’t take Mayfield No. 1, the Jets will make him the playmaking cornerstone of their franchise rebuild.
4. CLEVELAND; Bradley Chubb, DE, North Carolina State; After taking Myles Garrett with the top pick last year, the Browns can continue to turn up the heat on opposing quarterbacks.
What time does the NFL draft start?
The 2018 NFL draft starts Thursday, and fans have numerous viewing options for the event.
The first round begins at 5 p.m. Pacific time. ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, NFL Network and Fox will broadcast the event on TV, and the ESPN, NFL and Fox Sports digital properties will stream it online.
The second and third rounds take place on Friday starting at 4 p.m. Pacific. ESPN, ESPN2, NFL Network and Fox will show it all on TV, and the ESPN, NFL and Fox Sports digital properties will stream it.