This post was updated repeatedly on Friday.
Panthers take Will Grier
The Carolina Panthers gave themselves a young quarterback behind starter Cam Newton when they used a third-round pick on West Virginia’s Will Grier.
Grier became the fifth quarterback selected in this draft. Kyler Murray, Daniel Jones and Dwayne Haskins were chosen in Thursday’s opening round. Drew Lock was selected by the Denver Broncos in the second round earlier Friday evening. Grier went to the Panthers on the 36th pick of the third round, No. 100 overall in the draft.
Newton is a former league MVP but is coming off his second surgery on his throwing shoulder in less than two years. He underwent an arthroscopic procedure on his right shoulder in January. In March 2017, Newton underwent surgery on the same shoulder to have a partially torn rotator cuff repaired.
The quarterbacks still available for Saturday’s final day of the draft include N.C. State’s Ryan Finley and Auburn’s Jarrett Stidham.
A run on wide receivers and cornerbacks
There was a severe shortage of wide receivers and cornerbacks in Thursday night’s opening round of the NFL draft.
The correction came in Friday night’s second round.
After two wide receivers were chosen in the first round, seven came off the board in the second round: South Carolina’s Deebo Samuel, 36th overall to the 49ers; Mississippi’s A.J. Brown, 51st to the Titans; Georgia’s Mecole Hardman, 56th to the Chiefs; Stanford’s J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, 57th to the Eagles; Ohio State’s Parris Campbell, 59th to the Colts; Andy Isabella of Massachusetts, 62nd to the Cardinals; and Mississippi’s D.K. Metcalf, 64th to the Seahawks.
After only one cornerback was selected in the opening round, seven were taken in Round 2: Washington’s Byron Murphy, 33rd overall to the Cardinals; Temple’s Rock Ya-Sin, 34th to the Colts; Central Michigan’s Sean Bunting, 39th to the Buccaneers; Clemson’s Trayvon Mullen, 40th to the Raiders; Vanderbilt’s Joejuan Williams, 45th to the Patriots; LSU’s Greedy Williams, 46th to the Browns; and Kentucky’s Lonnie Johnson, 54th to the Texans.
Arizona trades Josh Rosen to Miami
Josh Rosen is headed to South Florida to join his second NFL team for his second NFL season, quite an unusual development for a quarterback drafted in the top 10.
The Arizona Cardinals traded Rosen to the Miami Dolphins for a second-round choice in the NFL draft Friday night. The Cardinals used the pick, the draft’s 62nd overall selection, on Massachusetts wide receiver Andy Isabella. Arizona also is to receive a fifth-round pick next year in the deal.
The Dolphins — in a separate, earlier deal — traded down from 48th to 62nd in the second round before making the move for Rosen. They apparently believed that the draft’s 48th overall choice was too much to give up for Rosen. There had been reports that the trade would be made for the 48th pick.
The move comes a day after the Cardinals used the top overall selection in this NFL draft Thursday night on Kyler Murray, the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback from Oklahoma. The Cardinals decided they simply could not pass on Murray to run the college-style offense of their new head coach, Kliff Kingsbury, and essentially gave up on Rosen only one season after trading up to select him 10th overall in last year’s NFL draft.
Rosen becomes the quarterback of the future, and perhaps the quarterback of the present, in Miami. The Dolphins traded Ryan Tannehill to the Tennessee Titans earlier this offseason. They tried, but failed, to land Teddy Bridgewater in free agency and signed veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick, at best a temporary placeholder at the position.
The issue, of course, is whether Rosen remains capable of becoming the franchise quarterback he was drafted to be. He struggled as a rookie in Arizona, throwing 14 interceptions to go with only 11 touchdown passes and posting a woeful passer rating of 66.7 in 14 games, including 13 starts. But he was in a bad situation, playing on a dreadful team for a head coach, Steve Wilks, who was fired after only one season. Now he gets a career restart with the Dolphins under their new coach, Brian Flores.
The Cardinals lost the New York Giants and Washington Redskins as prospective trade partners Thursday night when both teams used first-round picks on quarterbacks. The Giants took Duke’s Daniel Jones with the No. 6 overall pick and the Redskins used the 15th choice on Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins. That left the Dolphins as the most logical team to deal for Rosen.
Chiefs take wide receiver after Hill recording emerges
Did the Kansas City Chiefs just draft a replacement for Tyreek Hill?
The Chiefs traded up in the late stages of the second round of the NFL draft to select Mecole Hardman, a swift wide receiver from Georgia, with the 56th overall choice.
Hardman is described as one of the fastest players available in this draft. He is considered a relatively unpolished prospect with potential to develop a game-breaking player. He also is a dangerous kick returner.
That skill set is reminiscent of the considerable abilities of Hill, who has become one of the NFL’s most dynamic playmakers as a wide receiver and returner for the Chiefs but faces an uncertain NFL future because of his off-field troubles.
Chiefs Coach Andy Reid said at a news conference earlier Friday that authorities in the Kansas City area had reopened the criminal investigation into abuse allegations involving Hill’s young son. A prosecutor announced this week that no criminal charges would be filed, because authorities could not establish from the available evidence who was responsible for the child’s injuries. But then a Kansas City-area television station aired audio of Hill and his fiancee discussing the allegations.
The Chiefs have barred Hill from participating in offseason team activities for the foreseeable future. The NFL could discipline Hill under its personal conduct policy even if he is not charged with a crime or convicted.
Broncos lock down Drew Lock
John Elway’s latest attempt to give the Denver Broncos a long-term solution at quarterback ended the descent of Drew Lock through the NFL draft, 10 picks into Friday night’s second round.
Lock became the fourth quarterback chosen in this NFL draft and the first to go in the second round. The Broncos traded up 10 spots to get Lock with the draft’s 42nd overall choice. It made for back-to-back picks for Denver, which selected Kansas State offensive tackle Dalton Risner 41st overall.
It widely had been expected that Lock, a Missouri product, would be taken in the first round. Instead, only three quarterbacks — Kyler Murray, Daniel Jones and Dwayne Haskins — came off the board Thursday, and Lock dropped into the second round.
In Denver, he’ll have to wait his turn behind Joe Flacco, the former Super Bowl MVP for the Baltimore Ravens acquired by the Broncos earlier this offseason. But Flacco is not the answer over the long haul.
Since Peyton Manning’s retirement, Elway has gone through Brock Osweiler, Trevor Siemian, Paxton Lynch and Case Keenum at quarterback. The choice of Lock represents the most recent bid by Elway, the Hall of Fame quarterback turned Super Bowl-winning front office executive, to stabilize the position more than temporarily.
There have been questions about Lock’s accuracy as a passer. But draft analysts like his potential and now he’ll be allowed to develop slowly in the NFL.
“I keep a chip on my shoulder,” Lock said at the NFL scouting combine. “I’m a quarterback from the middle of Missouri, the middle of the country. I’m not a quarterback from California. I’m not a quarterback from Texas. I’m not a quarterback from Florida. I went to the University of Missouri. I feel like I’ve always had a chip on my shoulder, and that’s going to drive me for the rest of my career.”
Lock said at the combine that the situation in which he landed would be at least as important as the pick at which he was taken.
“Sure, we want to go as high as we can,” he said then. “But we also want to play in the league as long as we can. … That’s what I’m looking for — just the best fit for me to be able to stay in the league as long as I can.”
Lock said Friday he was satisfied with the outcome.
"This is the right team,” he said in an interview with the NFL Network. "We were eyeballing Denver from the beginning. … I’m so excited.”
Jawaan Taylor’s wait is over
The Jacksonville Jaguars ended offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor’s draft plummet and continued to assemble what is shaping up to be a formidable draft class.
The Jaguars traded up for the third pick of the second round Friday night, No. 35 overall, and selected Taylor, the Florida product who had been projected by many draft analysts to be taken in the upper half of Thursday night’s opening round.
Instead, Taylor fell into the early second round, perhaps in part because of concerns about a knee injury.
“I’ve been dreaming about this all my life, to play in the NFL,” Taylor told the league-owned NFL Network. “I’m gonna give them all I’ve got.”
The Jaguars made a huge offseason investment in free agent quarterback Nick Foles, the former Super Bowl MVP for the Philadelphia Eagles. Some thought they might consider Taylor for their first-round choice Thursday night, No. 7 overall. But when Kentucky pass rusher Josh Allen fell to them for that pick, the Jaguars went for the highly regarded defensive standout.
Now they’ve added Taylor to that draft haul in a move that’s sure to please Foles.