Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

29 Jan 2006

Mock Draft: Too Early?

Don Banks prefaces his mock draft by suggesting that it's too early to engage in such an endeavor. Who's he kidding? It's never too early for a mock draft. I'd love to see a 2007 mock draft. Feel free to use this thread to discuss today's Senior Bowl as well.

Posted by: Michael David Smith on 29 Jan 2006

48 comments, Last at 30 Jan 2006, 2:43pm by Erasmus


by Show (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 1:00am

I know the Bengals run D isn't great, but I have a hard time believing that the DTs were the reason why. Robinson and Thornton played OK, and massive Shaun Smith looked pretty good in the later half of the year. I think a DE or a play making safety to play opposite of Madieu Williams is the choice for Cincinnati.

by Bruce Dickinson (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 1:16am

What Would Mel Kiper Jr. Do?

by Fnor (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 1:17am

As much as I dislike Don Banks, I can't help but be impressed. All his picks made sense and he actually picked a lot of linemen/defence! Amazing.

by NF (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 2:38am

I think all mock drafts should be prefaced with the disclaimer that they have almost zero likelihood to be very close to reality, and their only real value is for letting fans fantasize about what sort of players their teams may draft.

Proving my point, I am about to look and see who he has the Eagles drafting.

by NF (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:13am

The Eagles are not going to select 1st-round receivers in consecutive years (The Eagles first pick was #31, their second was #34 from the Dolphins. Thanks Dave!). If the duo of Reggie Brown and Todd Pinkston isn't as good as Owens and Greg Lewis, throwing another rookie receiver into the fire after he spends half the season learning a basic West Coast Offense won't help. I think Todd Pinkston is under-rated because he has always been a part of bad receiving corps except when he is #2 to a star player at the end of his career (Antonio Freeman) or #2 to TO. Seriously, in 2003, the other receiving options were James Thrash, who is now returning punts and coming in for plays from scimmage occasionally for the Redskins, Freddie Mitchell, a 1st-round drafted player who never got as high as #2 receiver and couldn't get a job anywhere in the NFL after being released (And that is truly impressive considering some of the teams with crappy WR situations.), the rookie LJ Smith/veteran Chad Lewis tandem, probably the best receivers at the time but no Tony Gonzalez's.

Also, I'm thinking that a lot of the awful short passes that happened this season were a result of McNabb checking down because Owens was well-covered and Lewis couldn't get separation, and hoping that whoever he passed to could make the tackler miss or break a tackle or something.

Saying all that, the Eagles are picking a DT or DE, unless the situation improves by FA or experience. Even if it does improve, they may pick a DE because Jevon Kearse's contract may become unmanageable in a few years and disproportionate to his value at his age. (I'm speculating here because I haven't recently checked his age or contract details.)

by NF (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:16am

I just remembered that they took a DT at 31 last draft. Maybe a linebacker? Starting at OLB was a revolving door. The reason i'm so hesitant about all this is that the Eagles have a lot of guys from previous drafts who aren't full-time starters but may make the leap at any number of problem positions.

by Kevo (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:26am

I agree, NF. The Eagles should go with a run-stopping OLB to stand behind their two pass-rushing DEs. I think they could use a bruising RB like LenDale White, too, to go along with Westbrook and Moats.

by Pat F. (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:46am

NFL Draft Blitz is a site that I've liked for a while. They do 2007 AND 2008 mock drafts for those interested, although a huge amount of their content is subscriber-only now, including those :\

by NF (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 4:09am

I was just looking at the 2001 draft, and saw that after Freddie Mitchell, the Colts took Reggie Wayne, the Bengals took Chad Johnson, and the Panthers took Steve Smith. Except for Wayne, all of those players were taken in the second-round or higher, and the only other 1st-round WR draft choice that panned out that year was Santana Moss, but still...If the Eagles take Steve Smith or Chad Johnson, people are talking about the Eagles Dynasty that went to 4 consecutive conference championships and two consecutive Super Bowls, and made the playoffs as a wild-card team in 2005 despite most of the team being injured. Ugh, this is why it sucks to be an Eagles fan.

by Potomac .Drainage Basin Indigenous Person (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 7:03am

I certainly hope the Eagles don't draft LenDale White.

by Harris (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:54am

I'd rather see the Eagles pickup White rather than Holmes. I'd also like to see them get Will Demps ande Rocky Beriand as free agents but that's not likely to happen either.

Hey NF. Don't forget the Ravens picked Ray Lewis after the Eagles picked Tra Thomas. Ready to stick your head in an oven yet? I can move over.

by Derek (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 12:03pm

As fan of the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Philadelphia Eagles, I'm excited about the possibility of the team picking OLB Chad Greenway. His real strength is coverage but he is decent against the run. He wasn't very noticeable in the Senior Bowl but reports suggested he had a great week of practice.

I also think a first round OL is a possibility. I'm sure Andy Reid will surprise us.

by MRH (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 12:15pm

So if the Chiefs take Aston Youboty will he cover Craphonso Thorpe in practice?

by luz (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 12:34pm

so should i take from don banks mock draft that he likes the seahawks to win it all?

by KAyJAy (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 12:35pm

Ideally I would like to see them draft LenDale White(a better RB than Bush in my opinion - but thats another story) but im thinking hes gonna be gone at that stage . I dont think westbrook/buckhalter have enough as a RB if the Eagles want to make a good NFC East challenge next year. if they cant get white, they should try and improve ther O-Line. im thinking USC tackle winston justice or that guy with the knee from miami (cant think of his name!) and then maybe a RB in the second round.

by Derek (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 2:20pm

You are thinking of Eric Winston. Marcus McNeil out of Auburn might be another possibility at tackle.

Lendale White would be a nice addition but I doubt he'll be around at pick 14. I think 14 is too early for Santonio Holmes but I've seen Pat advocate picking the OSU WR.

by charles (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 2:44pm

After seeing him at the Senior Bowl, I think D'Brickashaw Ferguson is a viable #1 overall pick. Tackles this good last 15 years, which is three or four boom-bust cycles.

by Matthew Furtek (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 2:46pm

I agree with post #10. That being said... are the Eagles going to change their offense to actually utilize a traditional starting RB?

by ElJefe (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:00pm

Re: #11

So it's a tragedy that instead of Ray-Ray, the Eagles drafted a multiple-time Pro Bowl LT, and had MLB manned by a mutliple-time Pro Bowler as well?

Or are you referring to the Eagles not having someone in-house to "address" the TO situation.


by CA (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:20pm

Re: 9

Don't forget that Chris Chambers went in the second round that year as well. Also, I wouldn't count Koren Robinson out from that class yet. He showed flashes of brilliance in limited action with the Vikings this past season.

by fromanchu (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 3:23pm

re 9. 20
houshmanzadeh was also picked late that year. 6th round, i believe.

by Vash (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 4:37pm

Hm. So Banks just secretly picked the Seahawks to win the Super Bowl.

(they pick 32nd)

by David A. (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 5:49pm

Re: #19

As my buddy pointed out, Lewis didn't actually stab the guy. He may have held his arms back, but, but... but... yeah.

by NF (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 6:04pm


A G/T(?) was drafted in the 1st round of 2004. The Eagles actually got another linesman with starting potential out of the 2005 draft, and depending on how the OT Jon Runyan situation shakes out, the O-line may gel and be set for another 5 years. Chad Greenway sounds like he could be exactly what the Eagles are looking for to replace Keith Adams unless they want a good pass rushing LB instead.

#15: If the Eagles want LenDale White then they have given up on Buckhalter, which seems unlikely, given they signed him to an extension, but possible, given that it was only a two year extension. They are definitely sticking with Westbrook, who is a big part of the receiving game, compensating for his average running.

by Andre (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 6:05pm

I'd really love to see Bing playing for the Pats, but we all know that bellichick will pick a player nobody has ever heard of, probably from Notre Dame or Fresno State (Thanks to the holy belichick coaching tree). I'd say the'll pick somebody from LSU but i think those players are going to the Dolphins.

by Terry (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 6:06pm

Also, I wouldn’t count Koren Robinson out from that class yet. He showed flashes of brilliance in limited action with the Vikings this past season.

Athletic as all hell, and great after the catch. I think everyone knows those things ;-) For him, it's just about making the freaking catch in the first place...

by CaffeineMan (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 6:15pm

I’d really love to see Bing playing for the Pats, but we all know that bellichick will pick a player nobody has ever heard of, probably from Notre Dame or Fresno State (Thanks to the holy belichick coaching tree).

I think it depends on who the Pats pick up in free agency. I don't even know who's gonna be out there for defensive backs.

by buddha (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 8:09pm

Jay Cutler plays wide receiver?

by Paul (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 10:03pm

28: Thanks a lot. You just made me spit beer all over my keyboard.

by RowdyRoddyPiper (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 10:16pm

This may sound like snark, but it's totally serious. Does drafting a RB (say White if he gets there) help them a little on WR, I mean Brian Westbrook could easily line up at slot. Any Philly fans have insight into this?

by Harris (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 10:41pm

Re# 19: No, it's not a tragedy, but Lewis is a Hall of Famer. Neither Thomas nor Trotter, as much as I like him, can say that. So, would I like to have had the single most dominant MLB in the NFL playing for the Eagles over the past decade? Yep.

by Andrew (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:01pm

RRP #30:

Westbrook already spends a lot of time lined up at slot. He had 100 passes thrown to him this year, and many of those were with him split out.

That being said, Philly is not going to draft a big back in the 1st round, just like they won't draft a wideout then. They already have enough money tied up in running back, so they won't blow first round money on the position to load it up more. The 1st round will be used on the O or D Line. Picking a Tight End or Outside Linebacker is an outside possibility, but unlikely.

by Ted (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:01pm

I'm a Raiders fan and would like them to take D'Brick at #6 if he's available which seems unlikely. Failing that the next three guys are defenders whom I haven't seen play once this year. Mario Williams, DeMeco Ryans and A.J Hawk. Can anyone who has seen any of these guys tell me who I should want the Raiders to take and approximately what they would be getting?

by Ruben (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:07pm

#28 took me a second, but g-d d@mn that was funny.

Otherwise, I think this is among the laziest mock drafts I've read in a while. Arizona took JJ Arrington toward the top of the 2nd last year, and it has been indicated that he will be the every-down, with Marcel "Steaming Pile O'" Shipp as the "stuffed on 3rd down" back.

The Texans will be crazy to take Bush (but I think I'm still the only one banging this drum) over D'brick, but Leinart to the 'aints, and Young to the Titans doesn't sound bad...just predictable. I thought the whole point of these things was to be daring? Buncha safe bets and college golden boys.

Philly will not take a reciever in the first round; I'd say a run-stuffing MLB or a pass-rushing DT...the behemoths they've drafted the past few years haven't exactly been twinkle-toed.

by Ruben (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:10pm


Even though I'm usually a shameless Michigan homer, I can tell you that AJ Hawk (what a comic book name...no one really has that type of name) is the real deal.

I've watched him in too many years of Big 10 games, and he is always around the ball, even dropping deep into coverage. Good player.

by Ruben (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:22pm

Anybody else watching Family Guy right now? I think the Pats should replace Dillon with Peter Griffin...and football in London is exactly as I envisioned it to be...

by SJM (not verified) :: Sun, 01/29/2006 - 11:36pm

Andrew is right, the Eagles won't draft White because they just gave Westbrook a big extension. That would be like the Bengals drafting a 1st round RB right after giving Rudi Johnson a big extension... oh wait they did exactly that. OK it's possible.

by Erasmus (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 1:42am

I have seen pretty much every single Alabama game the last 4 years including every home game but 2 in person and I been to both UT road games in that span as well as the South Carolina road game this year, plus the Music City Bowl and Cotton Bowl so I am brushed up on DeMeco.

DeMeco is the real deal, his stats are not as eye-popping as Hawk's this year and his combine numbers will probably be lower then any of the other top LB choices as well. But the guy can play football. I think I can count on one hand the number of tackles he has missed the last 3 years starting. His weakness may be in coverage on faster TEs and thats about it I think. He is a football player-I am not sure if he is the gamebreaker like Hawk maybe, but he is the kind of guy who you can pencil in as a starter for multiple seasons with no worries.

by Erasmus (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 2:21am

Also, DeMeco Ryans size is a concerh-he would have to bulk up some to make it in the NFL. Again his tackling ability, his motor, and his intagibles are his best qualities by far.

by Tom (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 3:33am

Erasmus, did you see any of the Senior Bowl practices? Singletary had the South LBs doing some foot-speed/agility drills, and DeMeco was decidedly below average. Maybe he's a better game player than a practice guy, but I can't help but wonder if he'll fall below that #6/7 range where he's projected to be if the other raw athletic skills test similarly unimpressively.

by Erasmus (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 4:26am

Yeah I am surprised by the constant admiration for him both in this mock and with Mel Kiper as well. I think he is not as athletic as say a Greenway or Hawk and things like the speed/agility drill show that. I think his 40 time is around 4.7 as well. But in perhaps the fastest conference in the country he was the Defensive Player of the Year and I really have trouble remembering him being out of position or looking slower then someone else. I will admit that I am somewhat biased towards Ryan though.

by raiderdave (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 8:14am

Raiders are looking for a LB and they pass up AJ Hawk and draft Demeco Ryans???


by Dean (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 10:31am

Always good to see lots of speculation on Philly's pick. I'll try to keep my thoughts brief.

1) It won't be Santonio Holmes. This guy has T-O II written all over him. It could, however, be a different WR (Hagan? Nance?) if one has a great combine.

2) It won't be Chad Greenway. Reid RARELY takes linebackers on day 1 (but I wouldn't be upset to be wrong here).

3) It won't be LenDale White. He fills a need, but one Philly can fill later in the draft for less money.

4) It could be Eric Winston. Runyan is a UFA, and Thomas is 31, injury prone, and has 1 year left on his deal.

5) DE is the spot where we could get the most bang for the buck. Kiwanuka is starting to look like a reach in this spot, but the guy can flat-out play and he's the style of DE Reid likes.

6) My best guess: Reid trades up. He traded up to get McDougle and Andrews. Maybe he goes up to 7 to bag an impact player? Too bad it won't be Hawk.

by Dark Star (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 10:55am

43: Always good?

I don't think so.

by Dan Riley (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 11:41am

Hat Tip to Don Banks:
The point of the Mock Draft is not to get it right, but to give the fans of the league's 30 other teams something to talk about until April. And see? It works.

by Tom (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 12:52pm

Re #41
Thanks for the reply. I just have this feeling that DeMeco will be "that guy who dropped" this year, unless he tests out closer to Hawk and Greenway that I expect at the Combine.

Re #43
I don't really see Santonio Holmes as a T-O type player, and I'm curious as to why you do.

As for Holmes the player, he's extremely polished for a college WR. Pretty good hands, ran good routes, at least pretended to try to block, sometimes actually even doing so, and demonstrated pretty good speed. I didn't see nearly as much of Mark Clayton, drafted in the 1st round by Baltimore last year, but from what I read, they're the same type of player. The NFL player comparison is the same, Derrick Mason.

As for other WR's who would have value at Philly's pick, there really isn't one, at least at this point. Sure, I've seen Chad Jackson going late in the 1st round, but he doesn't excite me and the other WR's are solid 2nd-4th round selections.

by Brandon (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 1:33pm

No disrespect to Ryans, but I don't see him as quite the level of Hawk. I've probably only seen Ryans 4 or 5 times compared to around 15 for Hawk, so maybe my view is tilted by the that somewhat. However, I think Hawk's combination of elite speed and great instincts make him a much higher ceiling player. On the other hand, Ryans seems to do a better job staying in his lanes than Hawk, who allows his aggression to rule his play sometimes. In short, I think Hawk is a value at the Raiders 6 or 7 pick, while Ryans is a very slight reach.

by Erasmus (not verified) :: Mon, 01/30/2006 - 2:43pm

Heck I am a big DeMeco Ryans fan and I do not think he is at the athletic level of A.J. Hawk or even Chad Greenway. I still think he will be a great pro player though.