Baylor, by all accounts had a solid weekend in Chicago. Let's run through each Bear that was selected and see what situation sits before them. (Shoutout to BLMMM for the list of Baylor draft picks, I totally stole your list format. Find his fanpost here.)
1-15. Corey Coleman (Baylor) WR, Browns
A lot has been made of this pick, one way or another. Many national draft experts preferred the length and pass catching ability of TCU's Doctson. Obviously, the Browns felt differently. Added to the WR corps along with Coleman was Ricardo Louis (AUB), Seth Devalve (WR/TE, Princeton), Jordan Payton (UCLA) and Rashard Higgins (Colorado St.). The new management in Cleveland definitely had priority on bringing in weapons for newly signed quarterback... (whispers) oh my heavens there are so many Bears... Robert Griffin III.
Unbelievably we aren't done in The Rock n' Ro
2-38. Xavien Howard (Baylor), CB, Dolphins
Potential, potential, potential. There is a lot to unpack when you start feeling out the national opinion of the Dolphins' second round pick of X. Howard is long and speedy, but there are legitimate questions about his ability to make the right decisions on where and when to make a play on the ball. There were great plays which lead to visions of a fantastic playmaker at the next level, but there were (as Baylor fans know) a few less-than-stellar moments at the college level. Work ethic and coaching will be paramount.
4-122. Andrew Billings (Baylor), NT, Bengals
A lot of (A LOT) people, professional and amateur, were surprised that Billings fell so far. His physical capabilities alone probably warranted a higher pick, even causing a lot of writers and media types to predict a first round selection. Such is life as Billings fell to the fourth round and 122nd overall. (Were there really 121 players projected to be better/healthier/more consistent than AB?) I personally think Cinci got a steal here. Billings has shown he can not only plug gaps, but also collapse a pocket on. his. own. Not often heard of for a nose guard.
5-168. Spencer Drango (Baylor), OG, Browns
Are we really back in Cleveland? Drango, while playing at tackle during his college years, is projected as a pulling guard in the NFL. Graded as the second-best run blocker in this year's draft, I don't see how he doesn't help this rebuilding program. As a Baylor homer, I again am surprised Drango lasted until the 5th round, but just a little more chip for those broad shoulders. That was a pretty sensual sentence, but I'm okay with it.
(list of Baylor players in CLE)
6-210. Jimmy Landes (Baylor), LS, Lions
LONG SNAPPER UNIVERSITY (I totally stole that joke from some other article or fanpost. Sorry to that person.)
Jimmy Landes joins Jon Weeks as the NFL's PREMIERE BAYLOR LONG SNAPPERS (PBLS). A long snapper can have a very long, productive career if consistent. Landes is one of the best.
6-217. Rico Gathers (Baylor), TE, Cowboys
Did you know that Rico Gathers used to play basketball for Baylor? Did you also know that as a Texans fan, I personally hate that the Cowboys were the organization to draft Rico Gathers? First T-Will, now this.
Rico is a project, plain and simple. He definitely has the physical tools; size is definitely not a problem, and he boasts pretty good short field speed. I doubt the contact of the sport will be too much of a problem. When you think about it from a non-Houston perspective, this is a pretty dang good landing spot. No pressure to produce immediately, and he also gets to learn from Jason Witten (who by all accounts is a Hall of Famer).
Fun pick, I hope it pans out. Just not against Houston.
How do you think this year's crop of picks will fare in the NFL?
Undrafted free agent recap coming soon.