2019 Colorado Rapids SuperDraft Preview: Depth and preparing for USL affiliation

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15 January 2015: Axel Sjoberg (Marquette) (SWE) was selected fourteenth overall by the Colorado Rapids. The 2015 MLS SuperDraft was held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Andy Mead/YCJ/Icon Sportswire/Corbis via Getty Images)

Editorial (January 10, 2019) – The 2019 MLS SuperDraft is tomorrow. While they don’t have a top pick to select one of the best players from college soccer, the Rapids have a history of finding diamonds in the rough in this Colorado Rapids SuperDraft.

2019 Colorado Rapids SuperDraft Preview: Depth and preparing for USL affiliation

At time of publishing, the Colorado Rapids SuperDraft consists of four picks: the 15th in the first round, the 4th and 18th in the second round (28th and 42nd overall), and 4th pick in the fourth and final round (76th overall).

The draft has increasingly decreased in value over the years with MLS teams reaping the benefits of their development academies. The influx of foreign talent to the league has also had an impact. There is still MLS talent available in the draft. But now it’s usually a handful of graduating seniors and the Generation Adidas players. If you don’t have a top ten pick, those guys usually aren’t available.

The Rapids aren’t in that position this year, but they could move up. There have been rumors that Marlon Hairston is in play for a potential trade within the league. The Rapids could move the defender who had a poor 2018 season and looks to be unseeded by Keegan Rosenberry, and/or other assets to move up in the draft.

The club could use a depth option at left back and a midfield position within the 4-4-2 diamond or two. The club could be looking a few years down the road as well, choosing to draft at positions of strength and loan players down to Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC. A center back, box-to-box midfielder, or an attacking option could be in play there.

The Rapids are unlikely to get an immediate impact player with their current picks, so they are probably looking to further down the draft for a player they see something in that other MLS teams might undervalue or look over, not unlike former Rapids fourth rounders Dominique Badji and Niki Jackson.

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