Pro-Tip - if you take over a team that was controlled by the CPU, after a season, you will have exactly 0 scouted players for that draft.
The draft starts in 13 hours (from the time I wrote this)...
So we have to scramble and hope we get really, really lucky. We are picking 4th so I quickly tried to narrow down who might be available. I immediately narrow my focus to three players:
- SS Raysean Plummer. A playmaker with B+ Hit Power and a 7.5 combine grade
- CB Keilan Howry. A 6'1" man coverage corner who graded in the Top 2 on 4 of the 6 measured combine drills
- FS Nate Middleton. An underclassman from Michigan State with lots of pop in his bat (A- hit power)
These are the three guys I'm going to target with our 1st pick. They all fill a need for us, although there are a couple of LT's projected to go in the early 1st round who might still get some love from us yet.
The draft start is slightly delayed by the USA vs. Canada World Junior Hockey Gold Medal game. Then it starts all of a sudden without much notice (luckily I was in the game and ready). The first 3 picks are all CPU teams, and the best QB on the board goes #1 to the Browns. Immediately I feel some relief as I know I'm going to get at least one of the three players I mentioned above.
Plummer goes 2nd, damn, one less option. 3rd pick ends up being a LT. So I am now on the clock and have to decide between Howry and Middleton. It didn't take me long to remember how important having strong corners is in Madden 17, so I quickly settled on Howry and clicked the draft button to bring up his attributes...
Well, we got ourselves a franchise cornerback didn't we?!?! That speed and zone coverage are gonna make Howry a beast in the future for us. I was ecstatic that I avoided screwing up the first draft pick in franchise history!
The rest of the draft was pretty uneventful. It was definitely an experience to participate in a draft with 11 other owners. The CPU can be somewhat predictable in franchise mode drafts, the same cannot be said for human owners. There were several picks that left me wondering what the owner was thinking and several times where I saw someone drafted I was sure would still be available in a round or 2.
Here is a look at our entire draft:
All in all, I was pretty impressed with where I ended up considering I had no scouting information the day of. I was especially happy to get two good left-side offensive line prospects and I think McFadden can be a solid WR with some proper training.
Only time will tell if this draft sets the Buccos off in the right direction and upwards in the NFC South standings.