Around the League  

 

Four big questions for the draft's third day

Thursday night's Round 1 drew a combined viewership of 32 million, up 28 percent from last season.

How to watch the NFL draft
With the 2014 NFL Draft officially underway, find out how to catch all the action from Radio City Music Hall on NFL Network. More ...

The third day of the 2014 NFL Draft might lack the star power and pick-by-pick drama of the first two days, but there are still plenty of interesting storylines to follow in Rounds 4 to 7.

Here are four of the questions to which we will be seeking answers on Saturday:

What will the Texans do at quarterback?


Coach Bill O'Brien said the Texans would draft at least one quarterback -- and maybe two. Through three rounds and four picks, they've yet to address the position. Houston does have legitimate interest in Ryan Mallett, who should be easier to pry away from the Patriots now that Jimmy Garoppolo is in New England.

The marquee quarterback names left on the board are Alabama's AJ McCarron, LSU's Zach Mettenberger, Georgia's Aaron Murray, Pitt's Tom Savage, San Jose State's David Fales and Virginia Tech's Logan Thomas.

Other teams that could target a Day 3 quarterback include the Titans, Cardinals, Bengals, Bears, Packers and Rams.

Will the Browns finally draft a wide receiver?


As if Josh Gordon's impending lengthy suspension wasn't depressing enough, news broke late Friday night that veteran Nate Burleson has undergone surgery after breaking his forearm for the second time in the past eight months.

New general manager Ray Farmer has already made five picks, but he's yet to patch up his glaring deficiency at wideout. Among the most intriguing receivers still on the board are Clemson's Martavis Bryant, South Carolina's Bruce Ellington, Wisconsin's Jared Abbrederis and UCLA's Shaq Evans.

When do the Steelers address wide receiver and cornerback?


Entering the draft, beat writers were in unanimous agreement that cornerback and red-zone receiver were the Steelers' top two priorities. Although Pittsburgh has added an impressive blend of dynamic speed, size and athleticism through three picks, they have yet to fill those pre-draft voids.

As it turns out, Dick LeBeau feels better about his cornerbacks than those outside the building do. If the Steelers end up targeting a physical receiver in Round 4, Bryant's 6-foot-4 frame has to be appealing.

Will Michael Sam hear his name called on Saturday?


After discussing Sam's value with two dozen NFL executives in personnel, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Bob McGinn ascertained that Sam carries a late-round grade -- at best -- on the draft boards of most teams. Attempting to become the first openly gay player in league history, Sam is viewed as an undersized pass rusher without a position.

Our prediction is that Sam will find an NFL home before the end of the draft. If the Jets were once willing to snag Scotty McKnight in the seventh round because the former Colorado receiver was a close friend of Mark Sanchez, there has to be a progressive team eyeing the bigger picture with Sam. Special teams units around the league have fielded less impressive talents than the 2013 SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year.

The latest "Around The League Podcast" provides instant reaction to all the wild happenings in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Fan Discussion

NFL News
CONTENT
15