Round 1 (#24 overall): Cesar Ruiz – C – New Orleans Saints
This was about where most people thought Ruiz would come off the board. I heard some talk about the Saints wanting to groom him for 2021 and beyond, but I think that’s crazy talk. You don’t draft an offensive lineman in round one to let him sit on the bench. He could potentially play guard for a year or more, though. Ultimately, Ruiz goes to a great spot with a team that could be in the running for a Super Bowl.
Round 2 (#60 overall): Josh Uche – OLB – New England Patriots
I have to imagine Uche will see some immediate playing time in New England’s versatile scheme. The Patriots can do a lot of things with him, and he should play a role similar to what he did at Michigan. They should use him to rush off the edge and then also line him up at inside linebacker occasionally and run some stunts. Kyle Van Noy and Jamie Collins both left New England in the off-season, so the Patriots needed to replenish the linebacker position. He joins former college teammate Chase Winovich, and those two could be rushing the QB from opposite edges in 2020.
Hit the jump for more.
Round 4 (#143 overall): Ben Bredeson – OG – Baltimore Ravens
With the retirement of Marshall Yanda, the Ravens need a new starting guard. Bredeson joins a battle with Ben Powers (4th round in 2019) and Tyre Phillips (3rd round in 2020) to earn the starting gig.
Round 5 (#162 overall): Khaleke Hudson – LB – Washington Redskins
This was probably the second biggest surprise of the draft for me. Not necessarily that Hudson was drafted, but that he was the fourth guy off the board. I don’t see Hudson having a great fit in an NFL defense, but I have a lot of respect for new Redskins head coach Ron Rivera and his ability to piece together a defense like he did in Chicago and Carolina, so he must have a plan. After all, this is a guy who did some great things with Thomas Davis, Luke Kuechly, and Shaq Thompson.
Round 5 (#177 overall): Mike Danna – DE – Kansas City Chiefs
And this was the biggest surprise. Danna didn’t do much at Michigan, but he was outstanding at Central Michigan and in the East-West Shrine Game. He went from being a backup defensive end at Michigan to a 5th round pick. I know some people will probably say the coaching staff should have played him more (he only started 1 game), but he really didn’t flash much in a winged helmet. He does have some crazy athleticism that didn’t show on film last fall, so maybe the Chiefs fell in love with that aspect. Of course, maybe it also gives an indication about what kind of talent Michigan has in Kwity Paye and Aidan Hutchinson, both of whom started over Danna.
Round 6 (#182 overall): Michael Onwenu – OG – New England Patriots
Onwenu goes to another great spot with a traditional powerhouse. The Patriots have played guys like Onwenu at guard in the past, and maybe the professionalism of New England will help Onwenu keep his weight down, which has been an issue. Also, sometimes I read stuff and just don’t understand what people are looking at/watching. Onwenu is 6’3″, so he’s average height at best. He’s also nothing special in the run game.
Round 6 (#187 overall): Donovan Peoples-Jones – WR – Cleveland Browns
Okay, a lot has been made of Peoples-Jones’s fall. First of all, I just have to throw in an I-told-you-so from way back in 2017 that Peoples-Jones was never going to reach his potential in Ann Arbor with Jim Harbaugh. And I’m not even a Jim Harbaugh hater. I just try to be honest. The Browns have Odell Beckham, Jr. and Jarvis Landry at receiver, but the other guys on the roster are all no-names. Peoples-Jones could potentially go in and be an understudy, or he could be WR3. New Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski is kind of a traditional pro-style guy based on what he did as offensive coordinator for the Vikings, so it will be interesting to see how he uses tight end David Njoku, free agent tight end Austin Hooper, and rookie tight end Harrison Bryant. How do you use all those tight ends and three receivers or more and running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt? There’s a logjam of talent.
Now for the drama surrounding Peoples-Jones. There are rumors (rumors!) that Peoples-Jones was unhappy at Michigan. I heard rumblings about this for a while, but I generally don’t like to spread rumors when players are still in college. Peoples-Jones didn’t get the numbers he would have at some other places, and if we’re being honest, he doesn’t have the greatest on-field persona. He’s kind of a quiet kid, anyway, but he’s not super fiery or physical. He sat out spring ball in 2019 with injury, and he missed time at the beginning of the season with injury. There’s a common phrase that, “Your best ability is your availability.” We’ve seen in the past that Michigan’s coaches expect guys to practice/play when they’re dinged up. That doesn’t always fly well with kids. Peoples-Jones was fine on the field for most of his career, but he also dropped the ball – literally – multiple times in The Game last season. If you’re an elite player, you don’t have those kinds of drops if your mind is right.
Round 6 (#192 overall): Jon Runyan, Jr. – OG – Green Bay Packers
Runyan, who played left tackle at Michigan, will probably slide into the guard position in the NFL. The Packers are pretty set at guard for 2020, so Runyan will basically be fighting for a backup gig. It helps that he could potentially play all five positions, since he worked at center during his early college years. You need a swing guy, so he has a chance to stick.
Round 6 (#205 overall): Josh Metellus – S – Minnesota Vikings
Metellus probably needs to be a guy who plays closer to the line of scrimmage. It might be difficult to make the roster, but he had decent testing numbers. He’s the type of safety you take late. There aren’t a lot of playmakers available late in the draft at defensive back.
Round 6 (#213 overall): Jordan Glasgow – LB – Indianapolis Colts
This is an amazing story regarding the three Glasgow brothers. All three were walk-ons at Michigan, and all three turned into draft picks (Graham Glasgow in 2016, Ryan Glasgow in 2017, and now Jordan). If that’s not true player development, I don’t know what is. Glasgow looked good at the East-West Shrine Game, and he’s going to bust his tail to make the team in any way, whether it’s on defense or as a special teams guy.
Lavert Hill – CB
Hill went undrafted. I was both surprised and not surprised. I was surprised in the context of Mike Danna, a backup defensive end who got picked in the fifth, while a 1st Team All-Big Ten guy didn’t get picked. I wasn’t surprised because I don’t see NFL traits from Hill. He doesn’t have the speed to stick on the outside, and he’s not physical enough to play in the slot. He did, however, sign with the Chiefs as an undrafted free agent.
Sean McKeon – TE
I only put McKeon in the draft because his position coach (Sherrone Moore) said he was about to get drafted, and I thought maybe he had some inside information. Ultimately, McKeon is just an average tight end. He signed with the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent, and it’s not uncommon for undrafted tight ends to find a role somewhere, so maybe he’ll stick.
Shea Patterson – QB
Patterson went undrafted, which was not a surprise. He doesn’t throw a good ball, and his decision making is questionable. Not to make a mountain out of a molehill, but there was talk last off-season that Patterson spent too little time on football and too much time playing golf. I have no idea if that’s accurate or not, but right about now, I’m guessing Patterson is re-thinking some of his decisions – to leave Ole Miss, to pick Michigan, to stay for his senior year, to not work harder, to not pursue a baseball career when he was drafted, etc. I do hope he gets signed by someone, but as of Sunday morning, there are no reports of his signing a UDFA contract.
Round 2 (#62 overall): A.J. Dillon – RB – Green Bay Packers
Dillon was a bit of a surprise pick in the second round, going to the Packers. He was committed to Michigan at one point, but word on the street was that Michigan wanted him to be open to playing linebacker, so he went to Boston College instead. He had an outstanding college career, but I know some analysts were/are surprised that the Packers didn’t find receiving help for Aaron Rodgers.
Round 3 (#88 overall): Jordan Elliott – DT – Cleveland Browns
I have no idea whether Elliott will be any good in Cleveland, but he was at one time committed to Michigan (along with Baylor and Houston) and signed with Texas before transferring to Missouri. That’s five colleges who were, at one time or another, depending on his services.
Round 3 (#91 overall): Devin Asiasi – TE – New England Patriots
Asiasi transferred from Michigan to UCLA after his freshman year in 2016. Now he will have a chance to be the Patriots’ tight end, a position they’re trying to solidify after Rob Gronkowski retired (before unretiring to play with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay).
Round 7 (#249 overall): Brian Cole II – S/OLB – Minnesota Vikings
Cole was a wide receiver at Michigan during his freshman year, but some poor decisions led to a quick departure. He ended up at JUCO (East Mississippi Junior College of Last Chance U fame) before landing at Mississippi State. There were only 255 picks in the draft, and Cole sneaked into the compensatory picks right before the end.
David Reese II – LB – Carolina Panthers
Reese was a four-year starter at Florida after balking at the idea of playing fullback at Michigan. Despite that experience and solid play, he went undrafted and goes to the Panthers as a free agent.
Garrett Taylor – S – Buffalo Bills
Taylor, a one-time Michigan commit, has signed with the Bills as an undrafted free agent.
Keith Washington – CB – New Orleans Saints
Washington, who spent a couple years at Michigan before departing for West Virginia, went undrafted and got picked up by the Saints.
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