Archive for April, 2010

28
Apr
10

the WAY LATE post-draft thoughts

Sorry guys. I wish I coulda been more on top of it right after the draft, but stuff got in the way. Anyways, let’s take a look at some things I noticed during the draft, and a few thoughts.

I was really happy that I got the first 7 picks right. Kudos to me. After that, the Raiders blew me up (which I wasn’t surprised about). What I WAS surprised about was that the Raiders actually made a good pick in Rolando McClain. I’m pretty sure they run a 4-3 defense over there, which makes the MLB pretty important. And McClain is a vocal guy out on the field. He can get the job done for sure. What I didn’t understand was why they traded away their #1 tackler in Kirk Morrison. In my mind, it pretty much negated the McClain pick. I understand if they wanted him to be the starter, but you could have found a spot for Morrison instead of jutting him off for another pick. Classic Raiders right there.

CJ Spiller to the Bills??? Why, I ask? It doesn’t make sense. You’ve got 2 good running backs with Jackson and Lynch. There were so so so many more positions that needed help. Maybe they went with ‘best available player’ on their board, and went with that approach. But, that only works for a team that doesn’t have any glaring needs.

Tyson Ala-who-lu? Obviously this is the biggest reach here in the 1st round (yes, even more than Tebow), and so everyone notices this pick standing out here. But the Jags stuck to their guns, and drafted an almost completely new front seven. Time will only tell if they made the right picks. That’s all I wanted to say about it.

The middle of the first round went almost exactly how I thought it would. A few teams traded down/up but the players weren’t surprising. Anthony Davis and Bryan Bulaga flip-flopped in my mock. The Titans drafted Derrick Morgan. I thought some good picks were the Chargers moving up to get their guy in Ryan Mathews, Earl Thomas to the ‘Hawks, the 18-21 picks (Pouncey, Weatherspoon, Jackson, Gresham) I really liked the Demarius Thomas pick, and the Dez Bryant pick. No one reached too much for them and that’s a good thing.

And now, the steal of the 1st round goes to: Ozzie Newsome. The Ravens GM traded out of the first round for a 2nd, 3rd and 4th, and they ended up getting Sergio Kindle, a top-15 prospect with a late slide because of medical concerns. Well, if you can say one thing about Ozzie Newsome, it’s that he has a history of taking on guys that slide down the draft because of medical questions. Kindle is an absolute steal in the 2nd round and allows the Ravens to have some flexibility at LB. Pair him with Terrence Cody, their other 2nd-rounder, and you’ve got two 1st-rounders in the 2nd round. Unreal.

Even though they slid, Jimmy Clausen and Colt McCoy actually ended up in some pretty good landing spots. It may take a year to devellop McCoy, but the style of offense the Browns want to implement will suit McCoy very well. Kudos to Mike Holmgren for working the Draft and being able to select McCoy with the 85th pick, not the 39th. Jimmy Clausen is going into a great situation in Carolina. He won’t be asked to do too much, as they are primarily a running team. And running teams can carry you into the playoffs if the QB isn’t asked to do much. Look at the last 3 starting rookie QB’s to take their teams to the playoffs- Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco, and Mark Sanchez. All 3 had great running games, and they weren’t asked to do too much. I think that you give Clausen every chance to be the starter, and let him battle it out with Matt Moore. Could get interesting.

And, now the one that everyone wants to know about- Tim Tebow. Yeah, he’s a first round pick and there’s nothing that anyone can do about it. He’s not an NFL QB, blah, blah blah.. I think that he’s gonna do just fine. Sure, he might be a ‘developmental’ guy or whatever, but who would you rather have as your starter in 2011- Brady Quinn, or Tim Tebow? Exactly. This guy is a winner. He’s beaten teams led by Sam Bradford, Matt Stafford, Colt McCoy and Jamarcus Russell, to name a few. The last ‘developmental’ QB to sit for a few years…? Aaron Rodgers. Ever heard of him? Give Tebow one year- and ‘you won’t see a guy working any harder to help his team win’. I think I’ve heard someone say something like that before..

Any other thoughts? Feel free to chime in. What was your favorite late-round pick? Are you mad at your team? Are you happy? Let’s talk it up

26
Apr
10

Post-Draft Thoughts coming soon!

22
Apr
10

Its The Final Mockdown

I changed my Draft Board a little. Here are my final predictions. Of course, someone is going to make a trade and screw it all up, but if there are no trades, then here is how I believe it will shake down:

  1. Rams- Sam Bradford, QB- after passing up on Matt Ryan and Mark Sanchez the past 2 drafts, the Rams finally get their guy
  2. Lions- Ndamukong Suh, DT- Best player in the draft, hands down. You can’t pass him up.
  3. Bucs- Gerald McCoy, DT- consolation prize, and they are hoping he’s the next Warren Sapp
  4. Redskins- Trent Williams, OT- better suited for Shanahan’s zone-blocking schemes than Okung
  5. Chiefs- Eric Berry, S- Bulaga’s game tape has him sliding a bit, and you haven’t see another playmaking safety like this in years.
  6. Seahawks- Russell Okung, OT- will be a solid tackle, replacing Walter Jones. Could take CJ Spiller here and hope there’s an OT left at #14
  7. Browns- Joe Haden, CB- Browns will try and trade out of this pick, but if there are no biters then Haden is their guy.
  8. Raiders- Jason Paul-Pierre, DT- Freak athlete and huge potential. Sounds like an Oakland #1 pick.
  9. Bills- Dan Williams, DT- Bills will also try and trade into the middle of the 1st round, and they could also get a OT here, but with their new 3-4 defense, they need an anchor.
  10. Jags- Rolando McClain, ILB- Again, trying to trade out, but if not then they’ll go grab the best MLB in the draft
  11. Broncos- Maurkice Pouncey, C- Broncos have fallen in love with this guy leading up to Draft, Steelers will have to wait until next year to draft his identical twin brother
  12. Dolphins- Earl Thomas, S- Since Dan Williams is gone, they will try to trade back to say, the Eagles at 24, but again, if not then they will take the best defensive player
  13. 49ers- Bryan Bulaga, OT- even though not a top 5 player anymore, he’s still solid, and the 49ers will be very happy if he falls here
  14. Seahawks- CJ Spiller, RB- Again, they might try to grab him at #6, but I think they’ll end up with him. I dont think they’re going to take Clausen, they seem to be pretty sold with Whitehurst for now
  15. Giants- Mike Iupati, G- Giants need to get some youth in their offensive line, and this guy has a huge motor and a mean streak that their O-line needs.
  16. Titans- Derrick Morgan, DE- Most NFL-ready DE in the draft, and he’ll fill in nicely since KVB is gone.
  17. 49ers- Kyle Wilson, CB- it was almost Jimmy Clausen, but they want to give Alex Smith one more chance, and DB is a huge need also.
  18. Steelers- Kareem Jackson, CB- he’s been creeping up the boards, and if the Steelers don’t take a DB here I’ll be really surprised.
  19. Falcons- Brandon Graham, DE- The Falcons are looking to improve on D, and Graham gives them a hybrid-backer who should be pretty good if used correctly.
  20. Taxans- Ryan Matthews, RB- I really wanted them to take a D-back here, but only if Kyle Wilson falls to them will they do it. They need solid RB play if they want to win the AFC South this year.
  21. Bengals- Jermaine Gresham, TE- Cincy has never ever had a legitimate pass-catching TE since Carson Palmer was the starter. This could get ugly.
  22. Patriots- Dez Bryant, WR- Belicheck will have a hard time passing up on Jared Odrick here, but Randy Moss isn’t getting any younger, and the Pats have never hesitated on ‘troubled’ players.
  23. Packers- Anthony Davis, OT- The Packers can’t believe he fell this far, and in Michael Oher fashion, an OT goes with the 23rd pick.
  24. Eagles- Taylor Mays, S- if the Eagles don’t trade up for Earl Thomas, then expect Mays to go here. They can use him at Nickel to start the year.
  25. Ravens- Jared Odrick, DT/DE- Ravens can plug in this workhorse from Day One, and solidify a D-Line that will take pressure off a banged-up pass D.
  26. Cardinals- Sergio Kindle, OLB- Cards will take best available, and this is a steal at 26 if they nab him.
  27. Cowboys- Charles Brown, OT- They might also reach for Bruce Campbell if they feel he will have a higher ceiling, but the need for OT is their biggest.
  28. Chargers- Terrence Cody, DT- ‘Mount’ Cody will replace Jamal Williams for years to come.
  29. Jets- Everson Griffen, DE- What more do the Jets need? Defensive-minded Rex Ryan will get a new toy to play with here. Griffen could be huge.
  30. Vikings- Jimmy Clausen, QB- the eventual heir to the Favre throne, Clausen will probably fall this far if he falls past #17.
  31. Colts- Devin McCourty, CB- The Colts draft based on need, and they need OL and DB. Boring.
  32. Saints- Sean Weatherspoon, OLB- Saints get a steal here with the freakishly athletic Weatherspoon.

That’s it! I swear. Until after the draft anyway.

21
Apr
10

10 last minute thoughts on the Draft

The NFL Draft is Thursday, and from what I’ve been delving into lately, I’ve come up with some predictions/scenarios/thoughts on prospects, picks, and trends. So here are some of my predictions:

  • Contradicting my Mock 2.0, I believe the Lions will take Ndamukong Suh. You just can’t pass on this guy, I’m sorry. If you saw the Sports Science segment on him, he has the fastest acceleration burst out of anyone that they tested. He actually hits harder than Ray Lewis. Literally. Tested. Done. Next:
  • The Browns are going to trade down. I think that Eric Berry will get selected by the Seahawks. They aren’t going to pay #7 money for Joe Haden, who I don’t even think is the best Cornerback in the draft (I think it’s Kyle Wilson). The Browns are rebuilding, so trading down for more picks makes the most sense, especially with the value in the middle of the first round.
  • The Jaguars will also try to trade down and the Steelers might bite on this to grab someone they really want. They have 11 picks, and not 11 open spots on their roster. Since the Browns won’t trade their pick to division foe Pittsburgh, Jacksonville makes the most sense. If not then they go pass-rush, possibly Derrick Morgan or Rolando McClain.
  • Dez Bryant will not go in the top half of the draft. I think he may even slip to the Bengals or Patriots. That is, if the Raiders don’t scoop him up.
  • Someone is going to take a chance on Tim Tebow early in the 2nd round. Pay close attention to this one, kiddies. They wouldn’t have invited him to the Draft for no reason.
  • The Redskins are going to trade away Albert Haynesworth between the 1st and 2nd rounds. Haynesworth and Jason Campbell to the Raiders for their second-round pick, and a 2nd-rounder next year? Mark it down. Stranger things have happened.
  • The Ravens will do something awesome with their first round pick. They always do..
  • Michael Vick might be changing addresses over the weekend. Even though Carolina has less picks, if they don’t get the QB they want in the draft then they might try and cut a deal for him. The Eagles will probably pick up another veteran as a backup anyway. Jeff Garcia is still out there.
  • The Rams might trade away the 1st pick. Think about it. They can go about as far back as pick #5 and still be a safe bet for Bradford to fall to them. It all depends on if a team really wants Suh or McCoy that badly. This way, the Rams won’t have to pay #1 money, and still get their guy.
  • The 2nd round picks will be more interesting than the 1st round picks. Because the talent pool is so deep, and the 1st round is pretty much locked in to the same players, the 2nd round is where stuff will get really interesting. This is where teams will start to wheel and deal, jockeying for their guy to fall to them. Some of the big names to look out for in the 2nd round include Golden Tate, Colt McCoy, Tebow, Brandon Spikes, and Devin McCourty. Should be interesting.

I can’t wait for Thursday night at 7pm. I’ll be back after that to comment on the 1st round picks. Look out, Mel Kiper.

13
Apr
10

Trust The Tris Mock 2.0- with a vengeance

Now that we’re less than 10 days from the Draft, I feel that it’s time to update my Mock Draft. There’s been a lot of movers and shakers since Mock 1.0, so let’s do this:

1. St Louis Rams- Sam Bradford, QB Oklahoma. How much clearer have the Rams made it now that they dropped Marc Bulger, that they are going to take a QB in this draft? Then again, in 05, Aaron Rodgers was projected to go 1st overall, and he fell to 24th. Anything can happen. (Mock 1.0- Bradford)

2. Detroit Lions- Russel Okung, OT Oklahoma St. Detroit was originally a French settlement, pronounced ‘Day-Twat’ and was primarily a port city. It’s the only major US city that looks South on Canada. Oh, and they need an O-Line if they want to protect their pretty boy franchise Q, even more so than the need for a DL. (Mock 1.0- Suh)

3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Ndamukong Suh, DT Nebraska. That’s right, Clearwater, you’re gonna get your Suh, and his older sister too.  With Detroit looking like its gonna go with Okung the Hoss, the Bucs will get the next Warren Sapp. At least that’s what they’re hoping. (Mock 1.0- G. McCoy)

4. Washington Redskins- Trent Williams, OT Oklahoma. Is it scary how fast Trent Williams is flying up the boards? Some people have Williams ranked higher than Okung, and the Redskins know exactly what they need to do in this draft. Protect, protect, protect. (Mock 1.0- Okung)

5. Kansas City Chiefs- Bryan Bulaga, OT Iowa. No change here from my previous mock. The Chiefs must protect their investment in Matt Cassel, who was one of the most sacked QBs in the league last year. (Mock 1.0- Bulaga)

6. Seattle Seahawks- Gerald McCoy, DT Oklahoma. Here’s where McCoy stops skidding down the draft board. He won’t fall very far either way, and Seattle likes a D-Lineman now that they’ve lost a few to free agency.(Mock 1.0- trade to DEN, Dez Bryant)

7. Cleveland Browns- Eric Berry, S Tennessee. Trying to play catch-up to the rest of the teams in the AFC North isn’t going to be easy, but Holmgren & Co. have already done a pretty good job of weeding in Cleveland. Let’s see if the fruit can finally grow. This will be a step in the right direction with Berry.(Mock 1.0- Berry)

8. Oakland Raiders- Bruce Campbell, OT Maryland. Or will it be Dez Bryant? Or will it be Tim Tebow? Who knows with Al Davis anymore these days. One thing is for sure, the Raiders need an O-Line. Or do they need a D-Line? Or… (Mock 1.0- A.Davis)

9. Buffalo Bills- Anthony Davis, OT Rutgers. With a roster that resembles swiss cheese, the Bills sure have a lot of holes to fill. But Chan Gailey is an offense-minded guy and as passionate of a speech that George Edwards will make about drafting a D-Lineman, they need to complete that O-Line.  Jackson and Lynch need something to run behind. (Mock 1.0- Pierre-Paul)

10. Jacksonville Jaguars- Joe Haden, CB Florida. I think that the Jags have temporarily solved their pass rush problem with the signing of Aaron Kampman, and their next issue is trying to defend against the aerial attacks in the AFC South (Colts, Texans). They could also nab Dan Williams, who has risen fast on the boards lately. (Mock 1.0- Haden)

11. Denver Broncos- Rolando McClain, LB Alabama. The Broncos solved their problems at DT by signing Justin Bannan and Big Fat Jamal Williams, so now they look to nab the best linebacker in the draft to run their 3-4 Defense. (Mock 1.0- D.Williams)

12. Miami Dolphins-Sean Weatherspoon, LB Missouri. The Dolphins did answer their MLB questions when they signed Karlos Dansby, but Weatherspoon can play outside, and man does he have a high motor and a nose for the football. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Dan Williams go here also. (Mock 1.0- Mays)

13. San Fransisco 49ers- Mike Iupati, OG Idaho. Even defensive-minded Coach Singletary knows that the offensive line needs serious help. Iupati can play at multiple positions and can help the ‘9ers reach that next level. (Mock 1.0- T.Williams)

14. Seattle Seahawks- Jimmy Clausen, QB Notre Dame. He may not be here, in which case CJ Spiller makes the most sense, but even the trade for Charlie Whitehurst won’t stop Pete Carrol from putting his thumbprint on the Seahawks Dynasty at QB. (Mock 1.0- Clausen)

15. New York Giants- Sergio Kindle, LB Texas. With Rolando McClain long gone, the Giants still have their biggest need at LB. Kindle is a huge playmaker and has drawn comparisons to another Texas Linebacker, Brian Orapko. Should be fun watching the former teammates play against each other twice a year for a long, long time. (Mock 1.0- R.McClain)

16. Tennessee Titans- Derrick Morgan, DE Georgia Tech. The Titans would like to draft a DE here, and drafting someone that they can plug right in is key. They would love to draft Jason Pierre-Paul, but he is too much of a ‘project’ and as such could cost him in the draft. Morgan is almost a lock here to Nashville. (Mock 1.0- Morgan)

17. San Fransisco 49ers- Kyle Wilson, CB Boise State. The 49ers feel that they can win with Frank Gore and Glen Coffee, and so they pass on CJ Spiller to fill another pressing need- the press coverage need, that is. Wilson is arguably the best corner in the draft (in my opinion he is better than Haden) and the 49ers become legit with a much improved pass D. (Mock 1.0- Spiller)

18. Pittsburgh Steelers- Dez Bryant, WR Oklahoma St. The Steelers have a lot of picks and not a lot of roster space this year, so they may want to try and trade up to someone like Jacksonville, who could use some extra bargaining chips. But now that Santonio Holmes is gone, the Steelers are going to have to play catch-up to the Benglas and Ravens, who have vastly improved their receiving corps this offseason. Character issues may be a concern here and that could lead to a CB falling here instead. (Mock 1.0- Iupati)

19. Atlanta Falcons- Dan Williams, DT Tennessee. One thing is for sure- the Falcons need a pass rush. If Dan Williams falls this far, then watch out, this could be the steal of the draft. If he doesn’t fall, then Carlos Dunlap or Jason Pierre-Paul start to look much sexier here. (Mock 1.0- Dunlap)

20. Houston Texans- CJ Spiller, RB Clemson. A lot of uses for CJ Spiller. Kick returner now that Dunta Robinson is gone. RB now that Steve Slaton sucks.  Slot receiver since Kevin Walter always gets hurt. This guy is gonna create a lot of headaches for the AFC South’s so-so defenses. (Mock 1.0-E.Thomas)

21. Cincinatti Bengals- Jermaine Gresham, TE Oklahoma. The Bengals will most likely take the best available player here, and that could end up being Gresham. This will also give Cincy a legitimate middle-of-the-field threat who is deceptively fast for his huge size. I’m a little nervous. (Mock 1.0-Tate)

22. New England- Brandon Graham, DE/OLB Michigan. Graham will add so much to the Patriots D as long as they just let him sic the QB all game. He has the size to play DE and the speed to play OLB. The Patriots need to stay competitive on D to shut down the offensively weak AFC East. (Mock 1.0-Graham)

23. Green Bay Packers- Kareem Jackson, CB Alabama. The Pack still need an injection of youth in their O-Line, but that will have to wait. Jackson is getting a lot of hype around the league now and the Packers should bite on pass D. (Mock 1.0-B. Campbell)

24. Philadelphia Eagles- Taylor Mays, S USC. If the Eagles are known for one thing, it’s their playmakers. Taylor Mays worked extremely hard in the offseason, and his blazing time in the 40, along with obvious talent make this pick a no-brainer for Philly. OL is interesting here, too, but with a high 2nd-round pick, this can be addressed. (Mock 1.0-Weatherspoon)

25. Baltimore Ravens- Carlos Dunlap, DE Florida. The 6′-6″ freak of nature can inject some youth into the Ravens D-Line, and creates mismatches along with Haloti Ngata up front. CB is also a huge need, and Patrick Robinson could be higher on the Ravens’ board than people may think. (Mock 1.0-Gresham)

26. Arizona Cardinals- Jason Pierre-Paul, DE USF. I think that the Cards will roll the dice on this guy, which could pay off in a huge way, especially in the NFC West. Pierre-Paul has a lot of questions surrounding him coming out of college, but his athletic ability and huge potential are definitely not in question. Don’t forget that Earl Thomas is still available… (Mock 1.0-Kindle)

27. Dallas Cowboys- Earl Thomas, S Texas. The star of the Longhorns’ D becomes a star in the Big D after Jerry Jones pulls the trigger on the best D Backs in the draft. (Mock 1.0-C.Brown)

28. San Diego Chargers- Terrence Cody, DT Alabama Even though they still need RB, by the time that they draft again in the 2nd round, Cody will be long gone. And with the loss of Big Fat Jamal Williams, Cody can come in and become an instant space-eater. (Mock 1.0- Best)

29. New York Jets- Jared Odrick, DT Penn St. What else do the Jets have left to fill this offseason? They’ve made some fantastic moves to acquire some great players, and Odrick is going to serve as Rex Ryan’s new play toy. Watch out for the Jets. (Mock 1.0-Odrick)

30. Minnesota Vikings- Patrick Robinson, CB FSU. With the Vikings not needing too much, a playmaking CB is basically a nice parting gift in the back of the Draft for Minnesota. I wouldn’t be surprised if the drafted elsewhere, say, RB? But really they are a very complete team; as long as Grandpa Favre is still around, that is. (Mock 1.0-Robinson)

31. Indianapolis Colts- Maurkice Pouncey, G/C Florida. EVERYONE has him going to Indy, and so do I. The only other pressing need is CB, but all the good ones are scooped up except for Devin McCourty from Rutgers. But Pouncey will be a very nice addition. (Mock 1.0-Pouncey)

32. New Orleans Saints- Daryl Washington, LB TCU. I like the idea of Mad Scientist Sean Payton drafting Tim Tebow here, but that would just feel too warm and fuzzy. LB is a much greater need than QB/TE/RB. And look how long it took them to figure out what to do with a ‘college football superstar’ last time they drafted one in the first round. (Mock 1.0-K.Wilson)