The 2017 NFL draft is less than two months away and though teams will soon be shifting their entire focus to what to do on the free-agent market, talk of which prospects a fan’s favorite team will choose out of college is always fun to talk about.
Mock drafts are nothing more than talking points. They’re official for nothing. But they generate more talk than just about any football-related topic.
Bucky Brooks of NFL.com recently released his latest mock draft, and he has the Los Angeles Chargers making one of the sexier picks of the first round, selecting former Michigan safety Jabrill Peppers.
This pick is made partly because both Malik Hooker and Jamal Adams are off the board when the Chargers go on the clock, but it is still a safety and you’d be hard-pressed to find a more athletic safety than Peppers.
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At Michigan, Peppers was a playmaker on both sides of the ball. Head coach Jim Harbaugh was creative in using him, having him carry the ball on offense and go back to return punts and kicks.
Athletic as all get out, Peppers is very dangerous with the ball in his hands. You can see that in this punt return last season against the Colorado Buffaloes.
And look at this one. Though it was called back by penalty, you still get an idea of what Peppers can do.
If you’ll recall, new special teams coordinator George Stewart would like the team to find a Tyreek-Hill type of player to ignite the special teams. Could that player be Peppers?
It’s hard to evaluate exactly where Peppers fits in the draft. The team that drafts him is going to be one that falls in love with his ability, not so much drafting for need. This time of year, I read countless mock drafts, pretty much one per day. I’ve seen Peppers all over the board, probably more than any player in the draft. I’ve seen him at the bottom of the first round and I’ve even seen him in the second round. This is the first mock that I’ve seen him in the top 10.
How would you guys feel about this pick? Personally, I don’t think it would be that bad. You have to find players that can make plays in order to win in this league. However, the only way you could justify this selection is if both Hooker and Adams are gone at No. 7, as Brooks suggests they will be.