Penn State had its best NFL draft since 2010 with six Nittany Lions being selected. And it should have been seven.
With plenty of prospects to touch on, let's get right to it.
- Marcus Allen and the Steelers always just made sense. The former Nittany Lion had a positive relationship with Pittsburgh general manager Kevin Colbert, who sought safety depth in this year's draft. Allen's hard-hitting intensity will be welcomed immediately by Colbert, Mike Tomlin and those waving Terrible Towels. Plus, Pittsburgh is sort of home for Allen. He grew up in Prince George's County, Md., but Allen visited his late grandparents in the Steel City every summer as a kid. The safety tweeted shortly after being selected that he was "coming home Grandma." While Allen could have gone higher than the fifth round, Pittsburgh is the perfect spot for a Penn State fan favorite.
- Miami Dolphins head coach Adam Gase knows how to use tight ends. With Gase calling plays in Denver in 2013 and 2014, Julius Thomas posted back-to-back seasons with 12 touchdowns. In Chicago in 2015, Gase's two primary tight ends combined for eight touchdowns and 126 targets. Long story short, Mike Gesicki is going to be utilized. No one is really standing in his way of starting, and the athletic 6-foot-5 freak will be a nightmare in the red zone. There were few better situations for the second-round pick.
- Denver Broncos general manager John Elway gave DaeSean Hamilton a call Saturday afternoon and offered six words: "We've got big plans for you." And Hamilton has big plans for the Mile High City. Penn State's all-time leader in receptions joins an offense in transition. After ranking 20th in passing last season, the Broncos brought in quarterback Case Keenum and drafted Hamilton and SMU's Courtland Sutton. In the short-term, Hamilton gets to learn from Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas. Beyond 2018, Hamilton could be Denver's long-term option in the slot.
- Oh, and Saquon Barkley paired with Odell Beckham Jr.? Sign me up.
- Back in late February, ESPN's Mel Kiper projected Christian Campbell as a second- or third-round selection. On Saturday, he finally came off the board at No. 182 overall in the sixth round. Now, it's a situation with upside for Campbell. Arizona needs to replace Tyrann Mathieu, and Campbell — a lengthy corner and former high school safety — will get a shot at that job. But falling that far is unfortunate for the former Nittany Lion.
- Troy Apke being drafted in the fourth round was a total surprise. Obviously, this isn't bad for Apke. Kiper graded him as a "likely late Day 3 pick," so going before the fifth round is great for the Penn State safety. But Washington could have waited a couple rounds before landing Apke. The Redskins were intoxicated by the safety's 4.34-second 40-yard dash, and they reached. Plain and simple.
- It was ridiculous that Grant Haley didn't get drafted. Haley — a three-year starting cornerback — was stellar in 2017. Quarterbacks owned a 47.4 passer rating when targeting Haley last season, ninth-best among corners in the 2018 draft class per Pro Football Focus. Despite offenses throwing away from him consistently, Haley still had 40 tackles, 10 pass breakups, two interceptions and two sacks. ESPN and Scouts Inc. draft expert Steve Muench liked Haley more than Campbell. Clearly, NFL executives looked more at Haley's size (5-foot-9) and arm length (29 3/4 inches) than his tape. The New York Giants got a steal by signing him as a free agent. Haley can step in and contribute as a slot corner and gunner on special teams immediately.