PFT Draft: Best non-QBs in the AFC North

From Bengals WR Ja’Marr Chase to Steelers LB T.J. Watt, Mike Florio and Chris Simms select the strongest players in the AFC North who aren't QBs.

Video Transcript


- OK, those are the odds from BetMGM for the AFC North. The Bengals the favorites to win the division. I like the Steelers at +650.

- Oh, we know you like the Steelers. When have you not liked the Steelers on something? [LAUGHTER]

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- Well, Super Bowl 9. I can give you one day.

- All right.

- I can give you one day in my life where I definitely did not like the Steelers, and Super Bowl 9 would have been that day in January of 1975. All right, the best non-quarterbacks in the AFC North. Should we just like stipulate that you're picking Ja'Marr Chase and I'm picking TJ Watt, and we can just move it around two?

- Well, OK. Fine. Let's do that if you want. Let's do that. I'm definitely going to take Ja'Marr Chase. There was a little reason for that, but yes. OK, I'm definitely going to take him.

- Go ahead. I'm just playing around, but go ahead.


- All right, I'm taking Ja'Marr Chase. I am. All right, I mean, Ja'Marr Chase is, for my money, one of the three best receivers in football, like we always talk about. We talk about it with great quarterbacks, right? He's one of those receivers that can go above and beyond the play that's drawn on the chalkboard, whether it's a reverse, a slant. Oh, it's a fourth down and I got two people on me in the AFC Championship game? And yeah, I'm not even that big, but I'm so awesome Joe Burrow throws it up to me like I'm Tee Higgins too, and I go up and get it? I mean, he's the man, Ja'Marr Chase.

- And TJ Watt, look, the guy's incredible. Has tied the single season sack record. I never quite know because I still don't regard Strahan's as the real record because of the Brett Favre gift from the last game of the 2001 season. But TJ Watt, one of the best and most impactful defensive players in all of football, without question the guy who makes that defense go, TJ Watt's my pick. All right, you're up.

- All right. Well, I know that's a good one. This is why I chose, though, Ja'Marr Chase at first, right? Because, like, I'm going to go Myles Garrett, and that's an interesting conversation in itself, right? I mean, Myles Garrett versus TJ Watt. Obviously, you like TJ Watt there. I was a little bit in like, OK, I'm going to take Ja'Marr Chase and just take whoever's left over because it's so close. But damn, is that an interesting conversation as far as who you'd rather have sacking the quarterback.

- And you're absolutely right. It's easy to forget Myles Garrett because he plays for the Browns, and the Browns all in all have underachieved in recent years. Watt is a guy who was in that record chase, and it just feels like he elevates the defense when he's on the field. Like Garrett misses some time. It's not-- it's close, and Garrett is one of the best. He's been a Defensive Player of the Year candidate. I won't take anything away from it, but Watt stands out a little bit more. And I think being on the Steelers, you flip them and maybe Garrett comes to mind for me before TJ Watt. There's just something about Steelers.


- I think you're right. I mean, TJ Watt with the interceptions. Like, there does seem to be a bump of that football team when he's on the field. They both were drafted the same year, right? TJ Watt's got a few more sacks and Myles Garrett. So, I mean, you're not wrong, that's for sure.

- I guess I have to go Nick Chubb here. Although, I'm not quite sure how much the Browns are really going to lean on him this year. They're going to try to get more out of Deshaun Watson in the passing game.

- Yeah.

- But Chubb, one of the best running backs in all of football. I kept looking for another name to supplant him, but I couldn't find one that I felt strongly enough about. So I'll go Chubb.



Here we go. One more round, best non-quarterbacks in the AFC North. Christopher, you are on the clock and the clock is ticking quickly.

- I know. First thing is we do have to state that, I mean, from the other drafts we've done, right, we did NFC South and NFC North, right? I mean, man, you see why the AFC has got these type of football teams. Damn, there's a lot of good players. We haven't even picked up a player from Baltimore yet, all right?

And I'm not-- I'm going to go with Minkah Fitzpatrick. I thought about Roquan Smith, but Minkah Fitzpatrick is just an absolute phenomenal juggernaut of a safety who can do everything. He's an amazing playmaker. I think he's, arguably, the best safety in football. So I'm going to go with Minkah.


- Well, we got to get a Raven on the board then. Roquan Smith.

- Go with Roquan. Yeah.

- They traded for him last year. He wasn't happy with the Bears. They trade him, they paid him, and now they've got him, and he becomes a key part of that defense. That defense is always good. It always finds a way to be good. Whatever the pieces are, they find a way to make it work.

The offense, the question this year with the conversion from Greg Roman to Todd Monken. Pete says say some of the other names. How about Najee Harris, Tee Higgins, Amari Cooper, Odell Beckham Jr.? Remember we did the romper room bet where we're looking in the mirror?

- Marlon Humphrey.

- I see Mark Andrews.

- Yeah. I mean, there's so many good ones. Trey Hendrickson, Za'Darius Smith.

- Za'Darius Smith, who's in.

- Orlando Brown. Holy crapola. Joe Bentonio, sorry.