CHICAGO -- Day 2 of the NFL draft is truly a prime-time show.
Myles Jack, one of the most talented prospects in the draft, dropped out of the first round because of worries about needing future microfracture knee surgery. The heart of the Alabama defense -- linebacker Reggie Ragland and defensive tackles A'Shawn Robinson and Jarran Reed -- is still available. Quarterback drama exists for Connor Cook, Dak Prescott, Christian Hackenberg and others. The New York Jets, facing the possibility that unsigned quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick might retire instead of playing for fewer than $8 million a year, need to find a quarterback in Rounds 2 or 3. Pass-rushers Noah Spence, Emmanuel Ogbah and Kevin Dodd are all available. So is Heisman Trophy-winning running back Derrick Henry.
For months, experts emphasized the strengths of the second and third rounds of what is considered a deep draft that might not be great at the top. Several teams might revel at what they acquired in the first round, but Friday night's second and third rounds could return starters who will turn average teams into playoff teams and playoff teams into Super Bowl contenders.
Here are the teams set up for a big Day 2.
General manager John Schneider got his wishes. He was able to trade back five spots with the Denver Broncos, gain a third-round pick and get the offensive tackle he wanted -- Texas A&M's Germain Ifedi. Now, he's loaded with a second-round pick and three thirds in what he calls the deepest draft he can remember. The key to a draft is getting two to three starters. During the past 10 years, teams have a 43 percent chance of getting a starter in the second round and 28 percent chance in the third. Schneider's four picks Friday night could be huge for the future of the team. He figures to add another offensive lineman in the third round, and don't be surprised if the Seahawks pick a big cornerback in the second. A running back and linebacker could also be on his shopping list.
The Titans have picked offense in the first round lately. With the addition of Michigan State right tackle Jack Conklin, they've taken five consecutive offensive players in the first round. The defense has been neglected to a point that it surrendered 26.4 points per game last season. The only reason the Titans had the luxury to do that is because they have three second-round picks. General manager Jon Robinson needs to find two or three starters on defense with the four picks he has Friday night. He will be looking at cornerbacks, safeties and maybe some inside linebacker help. With the offensive line problems resolved and DeMarco Murray in the backfield, quarterback Marcus Mariota will grow. If the defense can start to catch up, the Titans might be able to make a big jump in the win column.
Bill Belichick had to stay quiet not after having a first-round pick because of Deflategate. The Patriots traded pass-rusher Chandler Jones to Arizona for a second, so Friday is the last push to what has been a busy offseason. He made the Jones trade knowing it was a deep draft for defensive linemen. The Chris Long signing filled a short-term void for Chandler, but on Day 2 of the draft Belichick will be looking for a long-term replacement. He can strengthen his offensive line and build competition at other positions. The Patriots have two seconds and two thirds.
Sashi Brown, leading the Browns analytics team, gets a chance to unleash his data and continue the reboot of the Browns roster. He made two trades to go from No. 2 all the way to No. 15 and took Baylor wide receiver Corey Coleman. Now he has one No. 2 and three No. 3s Friday night. The Browns need everything, but the most interesting thing to follow is seeing if they draft a quarterback. Will they go for Cook, Prescott or Hackenberg with the first pick in the second round? They need to hit on two or three starters. Put it this way: They have plenty of holes on the roster. Opportunity is there.
The Jaguars got lucky having Florida State defensive back Jalen Ramsey fall to them at No. 5 overall. He's the perfect fit for a defense that demands man-to-man corners. Could you imagine head coach Gus Bradley's excitement if Jack falls to the Jags at the seventh pick in the second round? The spillover of defensive talent that slipped out of the first round could also be options if Jack isn't available or they have worries about Jack's knee.
General manager Jason Licht needed to come out of the first couple of rounds getting a cornerback and a pass-rusher. Things broke so well for him in the first round that he was able to get cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III and add to that value by trading down two spots and gaining a fourth-round pick. The Bucs have the eighth pick in the second round. Spence, Dodd and Ogbah are still available. Licht has a chance to get a talented pass-rusher.
General manager Jerry Jones tried and failed to trade up from the second round into the first to acquire Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch. John Elway got his way and traded up for Lynch. After Jones won his internal debate between Ezekiel Elliott and Ramsey, he can focus the night on getting a quarterback. The Cowboys have the third pick in the second round. Cook, Hackenberg and Prescott are available. Jones can minimize any dropoff if Tony Romo sustains an injury by getting the quarterback he likes the best.