How did New England find the right combination of offensive linemen this season, and where are Seattle's biggest weaknesses in pass protection?
28 Apr 2009
compiled by Bill Barnwell
We covered first round of the draft in Part I and Part II of this edition of Audibles. Our Round Two Audibles takes us from the New York Times to ESPN.com. We start with the best pick of the Lions' draft...
Mike Tanier: Delmas is a square peg. He's an in-the-box safety who is at his best when taking on blockers, shedding blocks, and hammering ball carriers. He's also a good cherry picker who reads plays well, stays around the football, and can pick off passes. He's like Rodney Harrison, only in bonsai: he's only 5-foot-11 and under 200 pounds, so his stack-and-shed game may not translate to the NFL. At the same time, he lacks the top-end speed needed to excel as a deep safety.
Bill Barnwell: Wow. Great pick for the Lions.
Philly Homer: Detroit doesn't make good picks. Are we sure that guy doesn't have a wooden leg?
Big Jgke: Correction: The Detroit Lions drafted a Louis Delmas Fathead.
Tom: Steve Young claimed that "putting a face on the defense" -- a.k.a. Maualaga -- would've been better than Delmas. This is "analysis???"
Mike Tanier: Chung won't help the Patriots' numbers against deep receivers much, but he should free Brandon Meriweather from in-the-box responsibilities, allowing the more athletic Meriweather to play deep safety. Bill Belichick will protect Chung and keep him from doing what he's not capable of.
putnamp: Oh man, Chung to NE -- that's gonna piss off the Field Gulls guys isn't it?
Doug Farrar: Awesome kid. Great box player with some coverage ability. Thought he would have been a great for for Dallas as well.
Anonguy: Patrick Chung from Oregon eh? Need another headhunter back there with Roidney Harrison gone.
Bill Barnwell: Ooh, Roidney. I see what you did there.
MilkmanDanimal: "The Golden Corral Best Value Pick." You have got. To. Be. Kidding. Me.
Philly Homer: I'm so angry about Maclin I could go to a budget buffet restaurant.
Mike Tanier: Steve Spagnuolo gets a defensive quarterback with this pick. Spags is a long way from building a Giants-style defense, but Laurinaitis and Chris Long give him two young tone-setters. The Rams still have needs in the secondary. It will be interesting to see how they fill them.
Drunkmonkey: Laurinaitis is petitioning the NFL to allow him to wear the Spiked shoulder pads.
Philly Homer: Laurinaitis sounds like something you get in the Browns' training room.
The NFL rep announcing second-round picks notes that the "St. Louis Cardinals" made the pick...
Vince Verhei: SAINT LOUIS CARDINALS? It's been 20-some years!
MilkmanDanimal: I look forward to the picks of the Houston Oilers, Baltimore Colts, and Decatur Staleys.
Bill Barnwell: How come all the Just For Men commercials are of single parents?
SGreenwell: Bill, because married men don't need to worry about their looks. Their life is a living hell anyway.
Bill Barnwell:Thanks for reminding me to not get married, ever.
Vince Verhei: The "He Went To Jared" ad cinched my lifelong bachelorhood.
Bill Barnwell: Robiskie is the PERFECT pick for them.
Mike Tanier: Robiskie is a tall, hard working receiver who will make catches in a crowd. He's a possession receiver, but a second-tier one who will need to be picture-perfect in the pros. He's a lot like Muhsin Muhammad, and Eric Mangini's staff will be pleased if he becomes that kind of short target and crack blocker. Robiskie's lucky to be going to a team with a true No. 1 wideout, but he's not really ready to be a No. 2 target. Look for the Browns to run a very plodding, station-to-station offense next year. Kind of like the one they ran last year.
Ed: Maybe Robiskie can catch the balls when Edwards drops them.
The Broncos give up their 2010 first-round pick to trade up...
needawittyname: Denver's taking Everette Brown. If I didn't lose $100 earlier, I would bet it on that pick
Vince Verhei: Now Broncos take Brown/Butler. They also need help everywhere.
Bill Barnwell: I could believe that. I wouldn't have minded them picking him at 12 _or_ 18.
Drunkmonkey: Here we were thinking Brown was going to go at 18 to the Broncos. Silly us, they knew what they were doing all along!
Vince Verhei: This is GREAT news for Seattle. I think that could be a top ten pick next year.
Mike Tanier: Smith can make an immediate impact, both as a cover corner and a return man. He's only 5-foot-9, and his height no doubt scared a few teams off. He'll lose a few jump balls, but height is an overrated attribute in a cornerback. Smith's quick hips, good footwork, and (most importantly) instincts in zone coverage will make him a player.
Karl Cuba: McDaniels is in soooo far over his head
Doug Farrar: WTF?!?!?!?!? The Broncos are insane.
Bill Barnwell:I really like Alphonso Smith. I really do. I wouldn't give up a 2010 first rounder for him.
Big Jgke: Wouldn't seattle have blown the pick on a 5-foot-8 corner anyways?
Doug Farrar: Well, they can still blow a pick on a 5-foot-8 corner later.
Tom: Mort just said about the players Denver likes: "they like smart guys, they like tough guys, they like guys with ball skills." Is there ANY team in the league that doesn't want those players?
Drunkmonkey: Broncos already had 2 first rounders next year, so it really isn't that bad for them, but Seattle got a steal.
putnamp: Having 2 first rounders next year isn't an excuse to throw one away. That's *two first round picks*! That's a very good thing! You gave half of it away for less than value!
Anonguy: Josh McDaniels: I'm the what now? Bill? Bill? *meekly* Bill?
Mike Tanier: Maualuga's best attribute may be his instincts, because the Bengals need to get smarter on defense.
Big Jgke: According to gruden: put maualuga in that bengals uniform, he'll look just like one of those Bengals.
Mike Tanier: The Jaguars must be working on an "all left tackle" formation, where everybody lines up to the left of everybody else. One thing's for sure: Last year's offensive line emergency in Jacksonville will not repeat this year. The plan right now is probably to start Eugene Monroe at right tackle, Tra Thomas at left, and develop Britton to replace Thomas. David Garrard and Maurice Jones-Drew give this draft an A-triple-plus.
Bill Barnwell: Jaguars take two tackles? Wow. No discount for buying in bulk, guys.
MilkmanDanimal: Can you buy offensive linemen at Costco? I had no idea.
terrapin: Jaguars taking two tackles could be good. If one fails you have another. Plus if they both work out you just got two bookends in one draft.
Bill Barnwell: But they have Tra Thomas.
KJT: They must be spooked from last year's injury fiasco on the OL.
The Patriots move up, and have back-to-back picks...
goodmorningcaptain: darius butler and connor barwin, d'you think?
Bill Barnwell: That'd be my bet.
Ed. note: I didn't see this during the chat, but I must compliment this man on his Slint reference.
Aaron Schatz: The Patriots must actually have Richard Thaler and Cade Massey in their draft room today. I believe they now have 637 second-round picks.
Mike Tanier: This is a depth pick for a team that doesn't have many needs. Brace fits the Patriots' two-gap system nicely, and they can spot him as a 30-snap wave backup to Richard Seymour and Vince Wilfork. He'll also help the team's short-yardage defense.
goodmorningcaptain: so a replacement for Wilfork if he doesn't get resigned, depth if he does ... you've got to imagine a pass rusher here? corner's not an enormous need right now, four thirds for the speculative picks (pat white?) later...
Mac: So they're using a Best Available New Englander philosophy here.
Mike Tanier: The Patriots acquired Leigh Bodden in free agency and just drafted Patrick Chung. Their secondary is a lot younger and faster than it has been in the last two seasons. With Tom Brady back, their goal will be to win shootouts. Both Bodden and Butler have big-play potential when they pick off a pass, which is a big advantage when opponents start passing like crazy to play catch-up. Don't be surprised if the Patriots find an offensive role for Butler, who played some receiver at Connecticut.
Karl Cuba: So considering that the Bills have Schobel and took Maybin, does this mean that Brown goes to SF?
Bill Barnwell: I had Brown to the 49ers with the tenth pick in my mock. If they get him in the second round AND add Crabtree, they may have had the best draft of anyone.
ambientdonkey: if any GMs are reading this and picking between now and pick 49 I'd like to tell you that everett brown drinks blended puppies.
Big Jgke: what the hell is a jairus byrd?
Bill Barnwell: Played alongside Patrick Chung. Not that familiar with him as a player.
Big Jgke: ugh. the bills make me sad. i'm oot - thanks FO guys
Mike Tanier: The Bills are always well-stocked with young cornerbacks who can also return kicks. Last year they drafted Leodis McKelvin, and while Byrd isn't quite in McKelvin's athletic class, he's more capable of pressing and jamming receivers. A sound pick for a team that must face the Patriots twice per year.
Panthers trade up into the 49ers' spot...
Sisqo from San Fran: Yep, they got a first. Smart move, they can get a QB in the first round next year w/ one of 2 picks w/ the more talented class then.
Mike Tanier: Brown is another tremendous Seminole athlete, but he's more refined than most of his predecessors. He did a lot of stunting at Florida State, looping around another defender and crashing an inside gap. He also had some "containment" assignments and did a fine job reading screen passes and corralling scrambling quarterbacks. Brown is undersized for a defensive end, and many scouts question his ability to hold the point of attack. In the games I watched, Brown often did a good job of getting under his blocker's pads, so I don't thing run defense will be a major problem.
Mike Tanier: You know how this will work. White will play a little receiver. He'll play a little quarterback. Ronnie Brown will line up in the Wildcat as a shotgun quarterback, White will be in the slot, and opponents will brace for triple-reverse option passes. The Dolphins needed a more traditional receiver, but they couldn't get an athlete in White's class with this pick, and Vontae Davis was a smarter selection early in the draft. So let the good times role with White, Brown, and every gadget play Tony Sporano's staff can dream up.
Mac: Okay, every time someone on ESPN mentions the Wildcat, drink.
KJT: Did you guys know that Miami used the wildcat last year? I think we're about to find out some more about it.
idle: I think pat white is an inspired pick and it's foolish to analyze this as a pick for a wr. even if that were the goal, his numbers are similar to randle-el's. add that to expanding the spread offense ... i think there's a lot to like there
Bill Barnwell: Those numbers don't mean anything.
Doug Farrar: I love the Pat White pick. We've been writing a lot about the Wildcat since that game against the Pats early last season, and he makes that offense much more expansive with his ability to run and throw.
Bill Barnwell:Jesus. Because the Giants don't have enough linebackers.
chet: Do the Giants need ANYTHING? That's the problem.
Mike Tanier: Sintim projects as a strongside linebacker who will be best with his hand in the dirt in a 50-front. He's a limited player at this stage of his career. The Giants may develop him into a Mathias Kiwanuka type.
AlanSP: Sintim seemed like a much better fit in a 3-4 (where he played in college). His best skill is rushing the passer.
Zach: Sintim seems to be a real SLB, the Giants have a lot of WLB/MLB types I feel like.
Mike Tanier: Barwin is a tight end who switched to defensive end in 2008. He had a strong year as a pass rusher, but he's a developmental player.
chet: Ryans, Cushing and Barwin all on the field at once?
Tom: I have no idea who Michael Mitchell is, but I somehow know that he's fast.
Doug Farrar: Mayock has him as a seventh-round projection. There may be no Sierra Nevada left in the Bay Area.
Vince Verhei: GO RAIDERS GO!
Mayock: "I had never heard of him three weeks ago."
The NFL.com DraftTracker doesn't even have Mitchell's height and weight on file. This is AWESOME.
Bill Barnwell: NFL Draft Scout doesn't have a profile for him.
chet: I still don't know who Michael Mitchell is. Unless he was Hendrix's drummer.
Philly Homer: Jon Gruden just made the best "I worked for that guy" face ever.
Mike Tanier: Most sources list Mitchell as a late-round pick and a developmental player. His measurables, including a 4.71 40-time, don't stand out, so this isn't an Al Davis "athlete" pick. Just an odd pick by an odd team.
Doug Farrar: People say that it's ridiculous for writers to stick the Raiders with the speed preference, that it's just a big cliche, and even the Raiders aren't that stupid. Well...
Bill Barnwell: I was wrong. I misunderestimated their fetish.
MilkmanDanimal: Seriously, I couldn't love the Raiders anymore. Would it be wrong to request the a laugh track play every time they make a pick?
Vince Verhei: I don't know about a laugh track. I'd like some circus music. Maybe a calliope.
Bill Barnwell: No, it's sad. They're running a $500 million asset into the ground.
KJT: The Raiders just pulled in random people off the street at a tryout to see who could run the fastest 40. Michael Mitchell won.
Monkey Business: How much you want to bet that when Al Davis called Mike Mitchell, and MM went "Seriously? You're making me a 2nd round pick?" At what point does the NFL take the Raiders into conservatorship?
R.J.: If Al Davis was a fantasy owner in your league, you would've locked his team by now and kicked him out of the league.
ambientdonkey: Hell no, I'd invite Al back every year, my leagues play for money.
Matt: Maybe Al Davis just cares about more than scoring points. Like maybe he thinks it's not enough to just win the game, but that you have to do it faster than the other team. Like he's playing a game above the game. Or maybe he's just crazy.
Tom: From your friend and mine, The Cubs Fan, on Al Davis, with the best theory yet: I believe it's only amphetamines that keep him alive, so he just is pro-speed in all forms.
CNB: Oakland brought Mitchell in for a visit recently, so they actually did more homework on him than just checking his 40 time. He hits pretty hard, and uses his speed to make up for mistakes.
Vince Verhei: There were no other fast, mistake-prone hitters available?
There is no bad ending to the Michael Mitchell story. If he makes any kind of contribution, it's a genius pick. Otherwise, it's an A-plus bust.
With that, I must make my leave. The draft can't get any better, unless the Broncos draft a dead guy or something. Take care, all!
Doug Farrar: (What Vince doesn't know is that the Raiders are taking HIM in the third round).
Mike Tanier: The Broncos are getting good value in the second round. McBath will learn the free safety position from Brian Dawkins, and he can serve as Dawkins' "legs," covering the deep middle zones that the former Eagles free agent can no longer handle.
Anonguy: McBath? McDonald's gives out baths now?
Seahawks trade up as the Bears move down...
Mike Tanier: Unger has a tackle's quickness but a center's size, and he has less-than-ideal strength for the NFL. He was pushed around during Senior Bowl practices, and he would have a hard time switching from the screen-and-draw Oregon offense (which suited his abilities) to a piledriving offense like the Titans' or Vikings'. The Seahawks will use more zone blocking and short passing, and Unger has the potential to excel in a scheme that will allow him to slide out to the second level frequently.
Vince Verhei: I had to log back in after that Seahawks trade and pick. We'll see what they gave up, but this draft has been GREAT for them so far. Curry and Unger will both be Opening Day starters, and they added a first-rounder in 2010. Happy Happy Joy Joy!
Doug Farrar: Seahawks did take a center in 2005, but Chris Spencer has never lived up to his first-round status, and he's a free agent next year. I had them taking A.Q. Shipley in the fourth in my mock, but I'm overjoyed by this. Curry and Unger AND a first-round pick next year? Holy crap!
putnamp: Hey did anyone get around to making Oher/Unger jokes?
chet: What's the Oher-Unger on the number of Oher-Unger jokes?
Mike Tanier: With Brian Robiskie and Massaquoi on the roster to complement Braylon Edwards, the Browns will be able to spread the field with multi-receiver threats and frustrate opponents with crossing routes and passes into the short middle. They will also be able to run to the edge from passing formations, because Robiskie and Massaquoi can both block. Look for lots of tunnel screens, too. It's still not a great offense, in terms of talent. But the Browns look much better than they did yesterday, and their decision to slide down in the first round has resulted in some impressive second-round values. The only problem: Edwards and Massaquoi could form an Olympic-caliber hot potato team with their ability to drop passes.
Mac: Massaquoi can take over dropping passes if Braylon's traded.
It appears that the Cowboys pass on their pick...
Doug Farrar: BAHAHAHAHAHA!!!
Bill Barnwell: Amazing. Cowboys rule.
Philly Homer: I love watching a bunch of Cowboys brass looking bewildered.
Mac: They're waiting for Werder to arrive on a flight from Denver.
Tom: Dallas still doesn't know what to do since Michael Mitchell was taken.
Mike Tanier: The Cowboys had Giants and Eagles fans out of their seats when it appeared that they passed on their first pick of the draft here in round two. Browns fans were on their feet, too, as were some guys who appeared to be racquetball enthusiasts. The Cowboys have that effect on people.
The Cowboys didn't pass. They executed a last-second deal with the Bills, who took their second offensive lineman of the draft.
Mike Tanier: The Sporting News compares Levitre to Todd Herremans of the Eagles, and there are similarities. Herremans needed a full season (two?) to slide from tackle to guard, but he became a solid interior pass protector with enough quickness to pull out and block on Brian Westbrook sweeps. If he's not asked to take over at left tackle right away, Levitre can develop into a similar player.
MilkmanDanimal: Mayock: "In a phone both, I'm taking Andy Levitre." We play games inside phone booths now?
Mac: Dreading what Berman will do with Levitre's last name.
Mike Tanier: Veikune is very one-dimensional. At this stage in the draft, he's a useful project. He works hard enough to get some coverage sacks, and he can fill a role on special teams. Still, he's a reach. The Browns have so many second-round picks that they might be running out of ideas.
Mike Tanier: Those 36 touchdowns McCoy scored are just what the Eagles need: They were so bad in goal-to-go situations that it nearly knocked them out of the playoffs. McCoy is the complementary back Brian Westbrook has needed since Dorsey Levens got old. A fine pick, one that actually got the Eagles fans in the audience excited, including the guy in press row who should have known better (guilty).
Monkey Business: So the Eagles are going to have 3 super fast receivers that can't catch, and someone to spell Brian Westbrook who is NOTHING LIKE BRIAN WESTBROOK.
Bill Barnwell:Sal says McCoy is "Brian Westbrook Jr."
Red Hedgehog: I think the Eagles picked up LeSean just to make DeSean feel better about his first name.
Mike Tanier: Loadholt went too high here, but he went to the right team. The Vikings can draft Percy Harvin and trade for Sage Rosenfels, but deep down, they just want to run the ball down everyone's throat. If he stays in shape, Loadholt can be a solid run-blocking guard or right tackle.
Doug Farrar: The guy I like in that line is Duke Robinson -- wonder where he'll go.
chet: I like practically anyone called "Duke" except "University"
Mike Tanier: Moore is a hard-luck story among hard-luck stories, a young man who rose up from hardscrabble poverty and who plays with the passion of someone who knows what an opportunity he has. He may lack the natural instincts to be a top free safety, but he can fit as an extra linebacker and 3-3-5 type player.
Karl Cuba: Great pick by Falcons, Moore virtually lived the Wire as a kid.
chet: Does Moore appear in 'Melo's "No Snitching" DVD?
Moore is compared to a dinosaur of some sort...
Monkey Business: More players should be compared to dinosaurs. "Andre Brown can spit like a Dilophosaurus."
chet: Is Maclin a mastodonic-type receiver?
Monkey Business: Donald Brown is a great one-cut, north/south runner, much like a Velociraptor.
chet: I think the T-Rex comp was thrown out there for Sam Baker, and he turned out OK, health aside.
Colts trade up...
Mike Tanier: Moala doesn't have the tenacity to be a top run-stuffer, but his size will be an asset, and he can be dangerous stunting outside when Robert Mathis or Dwight Freeney twist.
Karl Cuba: Fantastic pick by the Colts, really fits their scheme, if they haven't changed it.
Anonguy: Who McShay projected as the number overall pick last year.
Jason C.: Can you define five technique DL?
Bill Barnwell: 5-technique DL plays between the tight end and the tackle, coming way off the edge.
Peter: between a four technique and a six technique imo
At this point, the chat breaks down into a discussion of beer and Boston hot spots, so it's mostly Tanier from here on out...
Mike Tanier: Kruger is always around the ball. He anticipates plays very well and gets a great jump. He works very hard to keep blockers from latching on. I don't see him as a natural 10-sack pass rusher, but he's the type of defender who picks up five or six coverage sacks a year because he won't quit working to get to the quarterback.
The downside? He's a 23-year-old rookie (Mormon mission) with no spleen and only one kidney, a guy who suffered a collapsed lung just 15 months ago. He's also a man without a true position. The Ravens will slot him on the strong side and allow him to rush the passer on most downs. He'll never be great. But he'll fit in.
chet: Ravens apparently draft Nobel Economist Paul Krugman...
Mike Tanier: Vollmer could barely speak English when he arrived at the University of Houston. Language barriers have a way of disappearing when you are 6-foot-7 and 315 pounds. Vollmer is not NFL ready at all, but he still has room to grow, and athletes with his frame are rare. He projects as a right tackle.
CNB: Mayock on Sebastian Vollmer: "He's from Germany. They call him 'Sea-Bass,' don't ask me why..." It's not that hard to figure out, Mike.
Mike Tanier: A developmental pick. Martin grades out as a nickel or dime defender with the speed and size to get better. This is the kind of pick the Panthers can afford to make.
Mike Tanier: Both of Beatty's parents are pastors. Instead of living it up here in Manhattan, Beatty is spending draft weekend in Arizona, signing autographs and raising money for a new church. Why does sitting in a dark theater on a gorgeous April day typing about football players suddenly seem like such a shallow pursuit?
Beatty isn't your typical lineman. He sews. He paints so well that art colleges pursued him as relentlessly as football schools. He plays keyboard. He even cooks Thanksgiving dinner for teammates: 20-pound turkeys, sweet potatoes, trays of macaroni and cheese and desserts such as cheesecakes and rice pudding, according to an article in the York Daily Record.
The perfect Tom Coughlin lineman? Sounds like the perfect spouse.
Oh yeah, Beatty can play football, too. He's a solid pass blocker with good feet and a knack for reading the defender's moves and countering them. He needs a year in the weight room and some refinement, but he will develop into a solid left tackle.
Mike Tanier: Having already selected Vontae Davis and signed former Cardinals cornerback Eric Green, the Dolphins could afford to gamble here. Smith isn't the hitter you want at safety or the technician you want at cornerback, but he can fill a role as a nickel safety who covers tight ends, or as a jump-ball corner to cover Terrell Owens in the end zone. I think the long-range goal in Miami will be to get him to bulk up and become an in-the-box safety.
Karl Cuba: 6 foot 4 214 lbs cornerback! Do they mean safety or have they never seen Lenny Walls play?
Bill Barnwell: The hope would be to build him as a hybrid.
Mike Tanier: When Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville walked into Marks' Vigor, Ala., high school gym, Marks was dunking basketballs. Tuberville was so impressed with Marks' athleticism that he immediately offered him a scholarship.
That's all it takes? What if Marks shot a hole-in-one on a Par-5? Bowled a 300 game? Stacked 4,096 cups in 20 seconds? Some basketball skills translate onto the gridiron, but don't you think Tuberville should have waited to see Marks, you know, play some football before offering him the grand prize?
Tuberville knew what he was doing, and Marks grew into a quick, disruptive force in the middle of the Auburn defense. He did not, however, turn into a run-stuffing force or a sack machine. Marks is still very raw, a guy who will get latched to a blocker or knocked to the ground if he doesn't beat his lineman off the snap.
The Titans need to replace Albert Haynesworth. Marks isn't that kind of player, but he does have the athletic ability to force defenses to adjust their blocking schemes. This is a very good value pick at the end of the second round.
Anonguy: Well, he's ok. I mean, he'll never be another Fat Albert, but he could be good.
Mike Tanier: The difference between the second-tier pass rushers who thrive in the pros and those who become busts is often effort. Many NFL sacks are second-move sacks. For an athlete a notch below Dwight Freeney to excel, he must change directions and keep battling once the offensive tackle has him locked up. Brown is a high-motor player, so he should be able to succeed despite his deficiency against the run.
Bill Barnwell: Really like Cody Brown. Good pick there for the Cardinals. Shocked that Michael Johnson is still on the board, though.
The Broncos trade up to the final Day One pick to take...
Mike Tanier: A tight end who catches eight passes per year? Where do we sign up?
We also chatted about Day Two on ESPN.com. For those of you who missed the chat or bailed during the hour-long technical difficulties, you can find the full archive here. Our player comments...
Doug Farrar: Greene's an interesting guy, Well-known as a one-year wonder, some academic issues in his past, but he does have that punishing style most teams want in at least a platoon system. The compressing of multi picks to get a couple is odd, but I'm so in line with the Sanchez pick, I'm not too unhappy with the methodology.
Doug Farrar: I like Barden, and he fits an obvious need with his 6-foot-6 frame. He can get downfield in a hurry with major strides. He's the jump-ball guy, the red-zone threat, and the security blanket Eli Manning hasn't really had since certain events unfolded. It shows that the Giants are aware of the value of that kind of receiver in their system and are willing to move on instead of holding fast to a player due to overwhelming offensive value. Smart move.
Doug Farrar: He's an interesting speed guy who really flew up the boards at the Combine. The Bears are seriously addressing the receiver position, and I love the Iglesias pick. Iglesias is that reliable slot receiver who will be a quarterback's best friend. Guys like Knox benefit from big-armed quarterbacks, and there certainly is one in Chi-Town now...
Doug Farrar: I find it interesting that they took Teel in the fifth with Central Washington's Mike Reilly still on the board. Reilly broke most of Jon Kitna's records at Central, the Seahawks were looking at him pretty hard there for a while, and I know that Greg Cosell (Producer of State Farm NFL Matchup) thought he was the fourth-best quarterback in the draft behind Stafford, Sanchez, and Freeman. I'm not as familiar with Teel, but I do find the pick surprising.
Doug Farrar: Pascoe's really not that guy -- he's almost the anti-Davis. A concussive blocker and an instant upgrade on special teams. More of a Will Heller or Jeff King than the kind of ostensibly elite athlete Davis is.
Doug Farrar: I like Painter -- wrote the pool report about him at the Combine. What I liked about him was his ability to gauge the timing and speed of his throws for different receivers. That sounds like it's not a big deal, but you'd be surprised at how many big-armed guys are throwing airballs out there on the post corner.
Caleb (Indianapolis): Could Curtis Painter one day be a starter for the Colts?
Aaron Schatz: Yes, and that day will be known to everybody as "Week 17."
Ryan (Austin): I am a UT Alum. With that said I am really pissed that no one has picked Quan Cosby, yet. I see him as the next Eddie Royal. I mean have none of these guys ever seen him play? Some of these WRs going before him leave me scratching my head. Its like they would rather have "potential" over proven stuff. I am so confused?
Bill Barnwell: I would assume there are pudding-related red flags that are coming up with regards to his makeup.
It's not necessarily potential over proven stuff, Ryan -- it's a matter of understanding what a player can do at the pro level. Just because a player could do something at the college level does not necessarily mean that he's able to transfer that skill to the NFL. In this case, Cosby is under 5-foot-9 and slow. He's got good hands, but if you can't get separation from corners, you can't catch passes. Cosby's athleticism may have been enough for him to get separation at the college level, but what his drop is saying is that scouts don't think he'd be able to get separation or contribute on special teams as a professional.
Greg (CT): Why is Graham Harrell so looked over?
Bill Barnwell: Harrell, honestly, doesn't have the pedigree of an NFL quarterback. He's accurate, but he doesn't have a big arm and he's playing a totally different game in college. Maybe he'd be successful as a pro quarterback, but NFL coaches aren't inclined to take on such a project.
Matt (Pennsylvania): I can't believe Jordan Norwood (PSU) is still on the board. His hands are AMAZING. I figured with him showing them off at the skills challenge he would be a sure lock.
Bill Barnwell: Harold Miner was great in the dunk challenge, too...
Ignoring the question of whether Norwood's hands are actually that great, he's another undersized guy who can't run routes. If you want to make it in the NFL as an undersized guy, you have to be able to run routes better than taller guys and have better hands. Do you think Wes Welker would be in the league if he was sloppy in and out of cuts?
Mark (Ohio): What are the odds of Mount Union's Nate Kmic being drafted? I know he is a small kid from a small school but he has rediculous stats. 8074 career rushin yards, Most TDs in a Career - 130 - Most Rushing TDs in a Career - 125 - Most Points Scored in a Career - 780 -Most TDs in a Season - 44 -Most Points in a Season- 264 - Most Yards Rushing Season -2,790 All NCAA records for all divisions and as for his size here are a few guys with the same height or smaller Darren Sproles, Steve Slaton, DeAngelo Williams, Brian Westbrook, Maurice Jones-Drew, Warrick Dunn Last time I checked these guys weren't too bad
Bill Barnwell: He has ridiculous stats, sure, but they're at a lower level and don't mean anything in the pros. Those guys are small, but they all have great athleticism. Your list is a red herring; they don't succeed because they're that small, they succeed in spite of their height.
Cameron (IN): What about Marcus Thigpen from Indiana? He had a forty time in the 4.3's.
Bill Barnwell: I hear 4.46, and that was at his Pro Day. Unless a 40-yard dash happened at the Combine, it didn't happen. The method of timing is totally different. We have no idea what track the 40 came on. You're allowed to wear totally different shoes and attire. The reason the 40-yard dash works is because everyone does it under the same conditions. Otherwise, it's like comparing a SAT grade from 2009 to one from 1983. The context is totally different. Picking guys for their Pro Day 40 time is one of the stupidest decisions a team can make.
69 comments, Last at 01 May 2009, 4:13am by masoch