NFL Draft 2013: Ideal Landing Spots for Top Offensive Playmakers

Jesse ReedCorrespondent IFebruary 12, 2013

GAINESVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 01: Eddie Lacy #42 of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs for yardarge during a game against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on October 1, 2011 in Gainesville, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons would be smart to pick Eddie Lacy—one of the most dynamic playmakers in this year's draft class—with the No. 30 overall pick of the 2013 NFL draft.

The top half of the draft will likely be dominated by defensive players this April, but there is plenty of talent to be found on the offensive side of the ball in the latter half.

Guys like Lacy, Cordarrelle Patterson and Tavon Austin will make a huge, immediate impact in the NFL—provided they land with the right teams, of course. 

With this in mind, let's take a look at which teams give these three players the chance to make the biggest impact in the NFL. 


Eddie Lacy, Running Back

There's an ongoing argument between scouts and would-be scouts on Twitter about whether Lacy or Giovani Bernard is the best running back of this year's draft class.

I'm of the opinion that Lacy is better suited to become a productive player in the long term than Bernard. He has a bigger frame, carries more weight and is more of a downhill runner who will pound out yards in between the tackles. 

Lacy isn't as fast as Bernard, but his power is impressive, and he has a spin move that belies his size. Additionally, Lacy is an excellent receiver out of the backfield, and he will be able to contribute as a three-down back from Day 1, as long as he works tirelessly on his pass-blocking.

Ideal Landing Spots: Atlanta Falcons (No. 30), Cincinnati Bengals (No. 37) or Arizona Cardinals (No. 38).


Cordarrelle Patterson, Wide Receiver

Patterson was thought by most to be a late first-round pick for most of the 2012 college season. Then, scouts began to take a deeper look into his tape and fell in love. 

The 6'3", 205-pound phenom looks to be the most natural pass-catcher in his class.

He possesses elite speed, but better still is the fact that he gets off the line like a cannon, makes cuts in and out of his breaks without losing much momentum and has game-breaking after-the-catch abilities. 

The one thing Patterson will need to improve above all else is his strength, as NFL cornerbacks will attempt to jam him at the line of scrimmage until he proves he's strong enough to break through with ease. 

Patterson will make an immediate impact for one lucky team in 2013.

Ideal Landing Spots: Buffalo Bills (No. 8), San Diego Chargers (No. 11) and Miami Dolphins (No. 12).


Tavon Austin, Wide Receiver/Utility Player

Guys like Wes Welker, Danny Amendola and Darren Sproles have paved the way for Austin and others like him to play a crucial role for an offense that understands how to utilize their unique talents.

Austin possesses video game-esque agility and change-of-direction talent. He's also incredibly quick and fast, and his best attribute is that he doesn't lose much speed when he makes cuts laterally—a rare and valuable skill in the NFL. 

In his final two seasons at West Virginia, Austin caught 215 passes for 2,475 yards and 20 touchdowns. In addition to being a reliable and explosive receiver, he's also a dynamic runner who scored six career rushing touchdowns and is a dangerous return man who scored five times on special teams during his college career. 

Austin will be a tremendous boon for one team in 2013, so which ones give him the best chance to shine?

Ideal Landing Spots: New England Patriots (No. 29), San Francisco 49ers (No. 31) and Detroit Lions (No. 36).


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