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2016 NFL Draft: Best Available Players going into Day 3

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Connor Cook and Andrew Billings lead the way as the best available going into Saturday

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

On day two of the draft, teams look for players that could be starters or are on the fringe of starting. The Packers made two picks of the latter with Jason Spriggs and Kyler Fackrell. Most likely, both won’t walk into Green Bay and start right away but they provide much needed depth at their positions and both could be starting within a year or two.

Day three of the draft is my favorite. On day three, we get to see how good each team’s scouting departments are. This is where teams are made and where every team finds depth and special teams gamers. Every now and then a team will find a starter but it’s usually not in the cards. Let’s take a look at some of the better players that are left that can add depth to any team. There might even be a starter floating around out there. Note: I’m not picking multiple players from the same position.

Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor

I’m not sure what’s happened with Billings. He was a guy that was projected in the mid-late first round and was even a big possibility for the Packers first pick but his name has yet to be called. There are some rumblings that he might be too immature for the NFL (he is only 20 years old) but if he gets in the right situation, with a good locker room, teams should not have anything to worry about. Someone will pick him on Saturday and they’ll get a strong nose tackle that will help solidify any defensive line.

Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State

Connor Cook isn’t just slipping down the draft, he’s plummeting. There have been six quarterbacks taken ahead of Cook, who was initially projected as a first round pick. Sounds like teams are taken back that he wasn’t elected as a team captain for his senior year at Michigan State. That’s a legit concern, as the QB needs to be a general on the field in the NFL. If Cook, can’t deliver good leadership skills, he might even see a few more QBs taken before his name is called.

Christian Westerman, G, Arizona State

Christian Westerman is the best interior offensive lineman waiting to hear his name called. He is an athletic player who is very fluid and quick off the ball. His biggest knock might be his size and ability to push players off the ball. He needs to add a little weight to his 300-pound frame and that will help get a little more behind his push. He is good at using his athleticism to seal off blocks but doesn’t quite have the power to drive defensive lineman away from the line of scrimmage. He’ll add some good depth to whoever grabs him in the 4th round.

Joshua Perry, ILB, Ohio State

Joshua Perry was a playmaker at Ohio State but some question whether he can do that at the next level. He seems like a good fit for a 3-4 middle linebacker as he is very physical and can fill the gaps on running downs. He needs to improve his coverage skills, as he seems lost when he drops back into protection. Even with that, he’s a smart, physical player that will step in and play the MLB position and could be a big factor on special teams as well.

Pharoh Cooper, WR, South Carolina

Cooper has been one of the most consistent receivers in the SEC over the last few years and was the lone bright spot on the South Carolina offense this past year. He is very disciplined and makes plays whenever he gets his hands on the ball. He does need to polish his route running improve his catch radius. His big plus is that he can step in to be a kick returner for whoever grabs him. He fits best as a slot receiver and will be able to use his very good speed and special teams potential as a selling point.