Kiper’s Day 2 winners, head-scratching picks from the 2019 NFL draft – ESPN


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  • Mel Kiper Jr.Football analyst

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      Mel Kiper has served as an NFL draft analyst for ESPN since 1984. He is a regular contributor on SportsCenter and ESPN Radio and writes weekly for ESPN Insider.

EnteringDay 2of the2019 NFL draft, we knew there would be a run on cornerbacks and wide receivers. There were just too many really solid players available. We also knew there was a talented quarterback still on the board — actually, there was another whogot traded— who wouldn’t last long. And I liked whereDrew Lockended up, even if he did have to wait until pick No. 42.

Here are the picks (and trades — we saw 18 of them) I liked and didn’t like from the second and third rounds. You can also readmy thoughts from Round 1, and I’m going to break down all 32 teams in my post-draft grades Saturday night, so come back later for the full analysis.

Check out thebest available prospectsas we head into Round 4 on Saturday. Coverage starts at noon ET on ESPN and the ESPN App.


Winners from Day 2

Denver Broncos

The picks:Dalton Risner, OT, Kansas State (No. 41);Drew Lock, QB, Missouri (No. 42);Dre’Mont Jones, DT, Ohio State (No. 71)

How about John Elway taking a stab at another quarterback? Lock fell out of the first round — he got caught up in the quarterback musical chairs and couldn’t find a seat. He’s a first-round talent, though, an inconsistent thrower with a huge arm. UnlikeKyler MurrayandDwayne Haskins, Lock has a ton of college experience. We have seen him at his best and his worst. He just didn’t have a ton of NFL talent around him at Missouri. If he can clean up his footwork and dig into an NFL playbook, he can be a starter at the next level.

Of course, Elway and the Broncos haven’t had much luck drafting quarterbacks lately, but this is good value, even if they had to trade up. They gave up pick Nos. 125 and 182 to move up 10 spots from No. 52. Elway won’t mind that if he got his franchise quarterback. As forJoe Flacco, there is zero guaranteed money left on his contract. If Lock shows he’s the guy, Denver can easily move on from Flacco.

Risner could be a plug-and-play right tackle in Denver, but he could also play centerandguard. Jones has some pass-rush upside for a 281-pound tackle, and he could play end in Vic Fangio’s 3-4 defense.

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