Draft night, from boring to exciting in a single hit

Published 5:02 pm Friday, April 29, 2016

The annual event/show of the NFL draft got started Thursday night with the first round playing out in primetime on ESPN and the NFL Network.

People spend months making mock draft after mock draft, big board after bigger board where they try and tell who the best players are and who should go where. Then on draft night, none of it matters.

So most years I tune in to see who the first pick is. This year, there was no drama there, though. The Rams traded a king’s ransom worth of picks to trade up and take Jarred Goff number one, then the Eagles followed closely behind and traded a bunch of picks to take Carson Wentz number two.

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With the first two picks all but made official weeks in advance, it looked like the beginning of the draft was going to be a snoozer…then the Laremy Tunsil debacle started to unfold.

About a half hour before the draft, someone with a vendetta against Tunsil hacked into his twitter page and posted a video of Tunsil smoking a bong through a gas mask. Tunsil is a stud offensive tackle from Ole Miss that was once expected to be the number one overall pick, before the Rams trade, and was almost assuredly a top five pick.

The NFL has a massive fear of smoking, though, and this video started a slide for Tunsil as media pundits started to proclaim this a travesty and talk about how immature Tunsil was and a bunch of hoopla about how terrible a person he is.

At number six, the Ravens needed an offensive tackle. Tunsil was expected to be gone by then, but now they were in prime position to get him. Instead, they passed and took Ronnie Stanley, the OT from Notre Dame. As the pundits on ESPN said after the pick: if you have two guys ranked closely on your board, you take the guy without the gas mask bong video.

Then the Titans, who desperately needed an OT, traded up to the eight pick. People expected it to be Tunsil. The Titans were going to get a steal! Alas, they took Jack Conklin, the OT from Michigan State, who also didn’t have an incriminating video posted right before the draft.

Tunsil continued to slide until number 13, when the Dolphins decided to take him. Then after he was picked, the awful person trying to ruin Tunsil struck again. He/she hacked into Tunsil’s Instagram page and posted a screen shot of a conversation between Tunsil and Ole Miss assistant AD John Miller where he is asking for rent money and utility money for his mom, both a big no-no in “amateur” college sports.

In his post draft press conference, Tunsil admitted to taking money from coaches (everybody has assumed for three years that Tunsil was only at Ole’ Miss because they won the monetary bidding war) setting off a firestorm through the SEC and college football.

I don’t know about you, but this all quickly changed a boring first round into one of the best ones in years, and now we get to sit back and eat popcorn while waiting for the Ole Miss fallout. I just hope Tunsil can get past this, use it as a chip on his shoulder and dominate (I really wanted the Bucs to take him at 9 then 11 after their trade).

About Brandon O'Connor


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