2017 MLS Super Draft Results
Round 1 Picks 1-11
This MLS Super Draft has four rounds of coverage. Enjoy!
Chris Ransom follow @DraftUtopia Last Updated: January 13, 2017.
Minnesota United F.C.: Abu Danladi, F, UCLA A Grade
- There were talks about Minnesota taking Jeremy Ebobisse. Abu Danladi was much faster and more explosive on tape despite dealing with injuries he had 2 goals in 11 seconds plus 6 goals, 10 assists, and 22 points in 2015 before dealing with injuries. Durability is a concern with Danladi, but he is a much better prospect on tape than Ebobisse. Danladi has more upside though.
Atlanta United F.C.: Miles Robinson, D, Syracuse A Grade
- Miles Robinson is my favorite player on tape after Abu Danladi. I like the veteran defenders like Michael Parkhurst that Atlanta brought in. The only problem is that those defenders are undersized.
- Miles Robinson has dominated in 2016. Robinson has 4 goals, 1 assist, and 9 points which is phenomenal for a center back. Syracuse has tallied 11 shutouts in 2016 thanks to Robinson. Robinson helped Syracuse record shutouts against North Carolina, Clemson, Virginia Tech, and Boston College.
- Robinson is an exceptional pure center back in terms of having defensive intangibles. Robinson has the kicking power and kicking accuracy to be a threat on offense when he dribbles the ball. Robinson is the one center back that received a Generation Adidas offer.
New York City F.C.: Jonathan Lewis, F, Akron B Grade
- New York City F.C.'s biggest need is on defense. Jonathan Lewis had 12 assists and is a great passer who is very fast on tape. New York City F.C. moved up for Jack Harrison with Chicago. I'm extremely impressed they managed to move up for Lewis.
- I cannot figure out why Chicago moved down. There were other teams they could have dealt this pick to even teams with multiple first round picks. Chicago got $250,000 dollars in allocation money which is why this pick is now a B grade. I personally believe that's too much money for New York to give up at this point.
Portland Timbers: Jeremy Ebobisse, F, Duke A Grade
- Ebobisse had terrible tape at Duke in 2015. At the same time despite having bad tape at Duke many considered him the best overall prospect because he was on the U.S. Under 20 team, captain of Duke, and had USL experience. Caleb Porter is the one coach in MLS who can get the best out of Ebobisse. I'm actually tempted to give Portland an A+ grade here.
Columbus Crew S.C.: Lalas Abubakar, D, Dayton A Grade
- Columbus had issues at both center back and outside back with injuries to their starters at left back and right back. Lalas Abubakar dominated the 2017 MLS Combine. Abubakar is a speedy 6-1 170 lb center back. Some have him at 6-0 and others have him at 6-2. Abubakar is defensively sound to a point where he is MLS ready.
San Jose Earthquakes: Jackson Yueill, M, UCLA A Grade
- Jackson Yueill was the fourth best player on my board. You can argue he's the best player after Abu Danladi simply based on his tape. This is a great selection for San Jose and you can argue that it warrants an A+ grade.
- Jackson Yueill had 2 goals, 11 assists, and 15 points in 2016. Yueill also lined up at defensive midfielder against Louisville in the College Cup giving Yueill the versatility to play attacking midfielder, central midfielder, defensive midfielder, or use him as playmaker midfielder that gets assists to forwards.
- Jackson Yueill has fantastic speed, footwork, and dribbling. His awareness and vision is through the charts plus he uses his kicking power and kicking accuracy to create scoring chances by setting up assists. This is a guy who can set up a scoring chance from halfway across the pitch because he's got superb vision and can kick the ball really far. Some fans call his feet badass so he's going to have an instant impact on the team that drafts him.
Vancouver Whitecaps: Jakob Nerwinski, D, Connecticut B Grade
- The 6-0 175 lb Jakob Nerwinski played center back next to Sergio Campbell in 2014. After Campbell left, Nerwinski was named a co-captain on Connecticut in 2015 before being named the Huskies team captain in 2016. Connecticut recorded 10 shutouts in 2016 thanks to the play of Nerwinski. MLS coaches moved him to right back and left at the 2017 MLS Combine, and Nerwinsky excelled at both outside back roles.
- I had a back half first round grade on Nerwinski. Nerwinski was a captain with good leadership though so I will give Vancouver a solid B grade despite reaching.
Atlanta United F.C.: Julian Gressel, M, Providence A Grade
- Providence captain Julian Gressel is 6-1 185 lbs. Gressel has an excellent soccer IQ along with the offensive and defensive awareness to play in the MLS.
- Gressel was a co captain in 2015. This year Gressel has 15 goals, 6 assists, and 36 points in 21 games. Gressel helped Providence upset unbeaten Maryland as well as beat Creighton to make the final 8 in the 2016 College Cup.
- Gressel was a third round prospect at the beginning of the season and in the middle of the season, but he's played so well during the College Cup, that he is now a first round pick. I love his tape though and see him as a plug in play guy.
- Gressel showed the versatility to play left wing, right wing, attacking midfielder, and defensive midfielder. I'm surprised Atlanta took Gressel this early, but love the pick.
Columbus Crew S.C.: Niko Hansen, F, New Mexico A Grade
- Niko Hansen knows how to create separation. He can play forward or midfielder with his versatility and may be able to move to the wing.
- Niko Hansen is a 5-10 170 lb forward who had 13 goals, 3 assists, and 29 points as a senior for New Mexico in 2016. Hansen had 3 goals, 9 assists, and 15 points in 2015. Hansen can play striker, secondary striker, left wing, or right wing with his versatility. I had Hansen as a second round pick last week, but teams are going to fall in love with his versatility.
- Hansen was originally a second round pick in my earlier mocks, but he was eighteenth on initial MLS Draft Boards. Now most scouts see Hansen as a top 15 pick that has the potential to crack the top 10. Hansen was a top 10 prospect heading into the final day of the 2017 MLS Super Draft so this pick gets an A grade.
Houston Dynamo: Joseph Holland, F, Hofstra F Grade
- Houston passed on Jeremy Ebobisse, Lalas Abubakar, and Jackson Yueill at 4. They trade out this spot and get Joseph Holland who was good, but not great at the 2017 MLS Combine. This is a huge reach because you are taking a second to third round pick in the top 10 and Houston's front office deserves to be fired for screwing up so badly.
Chicago Fire: Daniel Johnson, M, Louisville C Grade
- Daniel Johnson was a second round prospect that didn't wow me at Louisville. Despite my opinion of him, he wowed MLS Scouts at the 2017 MLS Combine and earned the right to be a first round pick.
- Daniel Johnson deserved to be a first round pick. I also feel like this is a slight reach though since I see him as more of a 12-22 pick rather than a 1-11 pick, but I understand why Chicago took him. Chicago also has a bigger need at forward which they have ignored for the past two years despite drafting a very promising defense.
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