Now that the NFL draft has been in the books for a couple weeks, fans have gathered their opinions on how their teams picked. A FanPulse poll showed the confidence that fans now have in their teams with the draft under their belts. Here are the results:
Buffalo Rumblings: 85%
Pats Pulpit: 91%
The Phinsider: 69%
As you can see, New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills fans are pretty happy as the season comes closer while it still seems that New York Jets fans are undecided. We had members from each of the blogs give their opinions on the draft and why fans have reason to be excited.
Most Buffalo Bills fans think the team is headed in the right direction after they went all-out in free agency, completely revamping the offensive line and wide-receiver corps. In the draft, Buffalo added a stud in Ed Oliver to replace Kyle Williams. With the added protection and weapons, Bills fans hope Josh Allen can take the next step on offense with a stout defense. Add in that Brian Daboll has been a consistent presence for Allen during his first year-and-a-half as the quarterback, and expectations are higher than they’ve been in a while for Bills fans.
While New England did not draft a tight end to help fill the void created by Rob Gronkowski’s retirement, the team did address its needs in the draft—and Patriots fans seem pretty happy about it as the 91% confidence score shows: First-round receiver N’Keal Harry will add size and physicality to a wide-receiver group lacking both, edge rusher Chase Winovich has already been dubbed a “prototypical Patriot,” and Jarrett Stidham brings upside as a developmental quarterback to the roster. Add a second-round cornerback, rotational running back, and long-term options along the offensive line and, baby, you’ve got a stew going! All in all, New England brought an intriguing mix of NFL-ready and long-term potential to the team via its ten selections, and expectations in the draft class are high among the Patriots’ followers.
Dolphins fans are getting behind the idea that the team is in a thought-out, deliberate rebuild. There are still plenty that do not think it will work, but free agency and the draft have made fans see that there is at least a plan in place. The Dolphins have torn apart the team and are concentrating on getting value and getting younger talent that can grow together into a sustained winning team. It may mean a really ugly 2019—though I think there is more talent on this team than people realize—but to get the salary cap back under control, the core of the team younger, and get out of a cycle of mediocrity, ugly may be needed. If 2019 is ugly, Dolphins fans will just look at what the team has done this offseason to prepare for 2020—where they will likely have 12 draft picks and over $120 million in cap space before making any moves.
Gang Green Nation:
Jets fans seemed excited about the team’s free-agent spending spree. Confidence doubled between the end of the season and the post-free-agency period. Fans seem less enthused about the Draft class. Despite picking Quinnen Williams, fan confidence went down.