The NFL Draft needs to hurry up and get here because I’m losing my damn mind.
“The Draft this year starts at the No. 3 overall pick” and other such bullshit that I’m entirely sick of hearing about, needs to stop. It’s not uncommon for the NFL community to have a good beat on who the first pick of the draft is going to be — last year it was Joe Burrow, and this year it’s Trevor Lawrence — but rarely is the second pick assumed like it is this year. And guess what? It shouldn’t be.
Right now, it appears to be a lock that Trevor Lawrence, the golden locks-having wünderkind out of Clemson, is going first overall to Jacksonville. Members of the Jaguars fanbase even sent Lawrence and his new wife a toaster as a wedding gift, and they responded in kind by making a donation to the Jacksonville community. That’s one way to toast a wedding! *Groan.*
That top selection is pretty much done, and that’s fine. However, with the Jets picking at No. 2, it seems like a guarantee that Californian-by-way-of-BYU quarterback Zach Wilson is going ahead of Justin Fields. There is an air of certainty to this scenario that makes my blood boil.
I wrote previously about the unfair yet perennial degradation of Black quarterback prospects, but it doesn’t make it any less infuriating that Justin Fields, who was the No.1 quarterback recruit in the country in 2018 (ahead of Lawrence), who has done nothing but perform and grow and show up on the biggest stages, who played in the Big 10 against elite college competition both in his regular season play and in his multiple College Football Playoff games, is now “unquestionably” behind Wilson, who had one good season against no-name schools.
And then, not only are we having to cope with the seemingly accurate yet still bullshit notion that Wilson is a surefire lock to go with the second pick to the Jets (which it looks like he is), it also doesn’t even seem like a lock that Fields is the third QUARTERBACK that will go in this draft. The media masses are trying to decipher every facial expression that 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan makes to figure out what he wants to do with the third overall pick. First, it was the tea leaves pointing to Alabama’s Michael McCorkle “Mac” Jones. That’s right — his name is McCorkle. I will never not make McCorkle puns about his throws, like “he really unMcCorkled that one,” and the like. I digress. After the Mac Jones hotness, then there were rumors about the raw athleticism of University of North Dakota’s Trey Lance.
Want to know who else has (more than) the raw athleticism of Trey Lance, (more than) the arm talent of Zach Wilson, and (more than) like, everything, of McCorkle? Justin Fields.
I’m sick of the rumor mill perpetuating the notion that Fields is anything other than the elite quarterback prospect that he’s been since high school. I’m sick of one beat writer saying that Shanahan not going to Fields’ first pro day means he prefers one quarterback over another, while another says his facial expression while watching McCorkle overthrow a receiver while in gym shorts means it won’t be Jones at No. 3.
Here’s the reality — we know nothing. All everyone is doing at this point is playing “what-if” games and speculating about what’s going to happen at the top of the NFL Draft, when the reality is that nobody knows. Maybe it’s a smokescreen. Maybe they want Jones. Maybe it’s Fields. Maybe it’s Lance. Nobody knows except for the people in that building, and I can’t wait for the pick to be made so we can stop speculating based on what Shanahan had for breakfast today.
Maybe it was toast.