The Arena Football League‘s newest team, the Washington Valor, took advantage of the league’s dispersal draft to lay the foundation for their roster. With the Los Angeles KISS, Orlando Predators, Portland Steel, and Jacksonville Sharks all leaving or folding, the remaining five teams picked players from those teams. Washington had the first five picks in the first round, and the draft continued until every team passed on a selection.
Washington addressed the most important position in football with the first overall pick, when they picked former Sharks quarterback Tommy Grady. Widely regarded as one of the best quarterbacks in the AFL in recent memory, Grady led the Sharks to the American Conference Championship last season. Grady completed 68 percent of his passes, while throwing for 94 touchdowns, and leading the league in passing yards with 4,495.
Grady threw seven interceptions, one of the lowest totals in the entire league. After taking offensive lineman Moqut Ruffins with their second pick, Washington picked up a weapon for Grady to throw to. The Valor selected former Predators wide receiver Greg Carr with their third overall pick. Carr caught 83 passes for 1,146 yards and 28 touchdowns, and he averaged 13.8 yards per catch.
Carr was the Predators second best wide receiver all season behind dynamic wide out Brandon Thompkins. After trading their next two picks to the Tampa Bay Storm, Washington had the sixth pick, which they used to take a backup for Grady. The Valor chose former KISS quarterback Nathan Stanley, who only managed to play 11 games due to injury. He completed 58% of his passes for 2,057 yards and 41 touchdowns.
The Valor had a rather interesting pick in round seven, when they selected former Predators quarterback Bernard Morris, who just announced his retirement from the league.
After Washington and the four other teams drafting passed on a selection in round ten, the draft was over. The Valor did their job, which was to lay the foundation for their roster. They have two quarterbacks who started last year, including one of the best in the league in Grady.
They also got one of the better wide receivers in the league in Carr. Washington will be ready to compete in 2017, and that’s because these picks will prove to be beneficial when the time comes.