Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

05 Apr 2013

RSP Writer Draft Update

The RSP Writers Project draft is now midway through the 11th round, so I thought I would link the results so far for FO readers to discuss. For those of you who didn't read about this project earlier, an explanation: Over on Matt Waldman's site, 32 different NFL writers are building teams through a straight draft. The idea is to find value while also building a team around a coherent philosophy. Writers can choose to build for now, or build for the future. Each writer is giving an explanation for his picks as well.

Here are the pages with draft data and explanations for FO-related writers:

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 05 Apr 2013

15 comments, Last at 08 Apr 2013, 3:34pm by Dan


by Ryan D. :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 2:00pm

I love the team full of linemen, Matt.

by Matt Waldman :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 3:28pm

Thanks. This will not be a team filled with skill divas.

by Ryan D. :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 3:56pm

Based on your player choices so far, who would be best suited to coach your team on offense and defense (other than yourself)?

Also, I would love to see each writer answer that question when they are done selecting their team (or sooner!).

by Matt Waldman :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 5:20pm

Good question. I'd like to have Mike Zimmer as my defensive coordinator. I like his ability to work to the strengths of his team and he's a 4-3 guy.

Not sure about offense yet. I have a few options, but depends on the rest of the draft. Tom Moore - if I could lure him from retirement would be on the list.

by Insancipitory :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 6:20pm

Build Chuck Knox a cyborg body made out of all the best metals like titanium, nickle and tantalum.

by andrew :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 3:26pm

still no punters or kickers taken....

by Karl Cuba :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 5:39pm

When you consider that FO's own research says that it's really, really hard to sustain success without a passer, the qbs on your teams are a rather unimpressive bunch.

Newton would be the best (but I'd still have taken Kaepernick, possibly because I'm rather biased in that regard), I can't believe that Mike Tanier took Vick after watching him in Philly, Palmer might stand a chance behind that monster of an offensive line but Aaron is engaged in an exercise in wasting the best years of Calvin Johnson's career.

by Aaron Schatz :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 6:28pm

Yeah, I somehow got screwed into not having a quarterback. The value was just never there for me in each round. All the good young quarterbacks went before my first-round pick, I felt Romo was too old so I took someone else. I was going to take Jay Cutler with my second-round pick but he went three picks before me. I could have taken Matt Schaub here but I liked Willis better since Schaub is 32 and somewhat the product of his offense, helped significantly by the running game and the presence of Andre Johnson. Schaub didn't last until the third round, so I was planning to take Andy Dalton, but he went before my third-round pick. I was going to take Carson Palmer in round 7, and Matt took him right before me. Right after that, I was thinking it might be time for Alex Smith and then a team took him right before me -- as their *backup*. (That's the only team to take two quarterbacks so far.) Once we got past Smith, we're generally left with either interchangeable veteran backups, youngsters I don't want, or not-so-youngsters who used to pitch for the Yankees. At some point, I'll take a quarterback as a placeholder. We're going to do two rounds of a rookie draft after 25 rounds of current players, and I'll probably end up taking one of those rookies who is not Mike Glennon.

The best remaining veteran backups are much better than you think, as long as they are playing behind solid offensive lines. As for wasting the best years of Megatron's career, nobody is better at adjusting to bad passes than Megatron is. He'll cope.

by Karl Cuba :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 10:20pm

I saw Smith go off the board to be a backup, if you'd landed him there you would have looked pretty smart for waiting after you never really had a shot at a marquee passer.


The only other quibble I'd make is I'd have taken Bowman over Willis, purely on age, and that's coming from someone with a signed Patrick Willis photo... and I only have one 49er jersey, number 52.

by Ben Muth :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 7:19pm

I was the only one in position to take a QB and even I hated my pick. Even I wish I was two picks earlier later. 2 picks earlier and I get RGIII who I think is a step above Kaep, Wilson, and Newton. 2 picks later and I can just take which ever guy is left Newton, Kaep, and Wilson. I see so little difference between those guys I just picked the guy that has been in the worst situation.

Still, it's been a really fun project.

by Dan :: Fri, 04/05/2013 - 6:20pm

An idea for a reader challenge: make a "best of the rest" team, where you get a pick at the end of every round. So, basically you can take one player who was drafted in each round, except for round 1. (And if you want to take no round 6 players and two round 7 players then you can do that.)

The advantage is that (if you do this at the end of the RSP draft) you can see the whole array of options at once instead of having to pick them one at a time without knowing who will be available later (so, there is no need to "reach" to get your guy, no surprise about missing out on a run, you can wait on a position knowing that you're 100% certain to get your favorite flier in a particular round, etc.). The disadvantage is that you have no shot at any of the top 19 QBs, or the other 13 first rounders (Watt, Atkins, Megatron, etc.).

by Sifter :: Sat, 04/06/2013 - 5:52pm

Hey I like this idea! After some umming and ahhing, here's what I came up with...
1 Cameron Wake DE/OLB (picked at 2.3)
2 Mario Williams DE (picked at 3.5)
3 Anthony Davis OT (picked at 5.8)
4 Evan Mathis G (picked at 6.21)
5 Jerod Mayo LB (picked at 8.3)
6 Alex Smith QB (picked at 9.7)
7 Mitchell Schwartz OT (picked at 8.14)
8 DeSean Jackson WR (picked at 9.25)
9 KJ Wright LB (picked at 11.8)
10 Antonio Smith DE (not picked yet)

I could have looked ahead, but I liked the challenge of not 'cheating' to see who could have been had later eg. I could have had Anthony Davis at the end of round 4, or Alex Smith at the end of round 8. In hindsight, might have taken D'Brickashaw or Trent Williams at 3 instead of Anthony Davis - just because they have been playing LT recently. Davis and Schwartz have played LT before, but probably not ideal to move one of them. For D, I'm probably looking at the 4-3 Under (been reading lots of Eagles crap this offseason). You'd have A.Smith and M.Williams as your DEs, Wake as the Leo/Predator, KJ Wright at SAM, and Mayo as one of the ILBs. Depends who the next pickup is though I guess, A.Smith can always kick inside to DT, and Wake down to DE in a conventional 4-3.

Next pick would probably be Sidney Rice, and tall WR to play opposite DeSean.

by Dan :: Sun, 04/07/2013 - 12:30am

I also have a team in progress, although I have been cheating (aka looking ahead):

1 Jay Cutler QB
2 Nick Fairley DT
3 Chris Long DE
4 Michael Roos LT
5 Marshal Yanda RG/RT
6 Roddy White WR
7 Sam Shields CB
8 Jon Asamoah OG
9 Mike Martin DT

[name omitted] is currently at the top of my list, but if he makes it through this round then I'll probably take Brian Robison as my 10th pick. I'm also not sure about the Asamoah pick; I may go back and rewrite that.

The way the value has fallen, I'm building my team to be really strong on the lines and averageish everywhere else. QB is essential, but Cutler was the best I could do (I wish I could've traded up to get Matt Ryan at 15).

On defense, it's been my priority to get a strong pass rush, inside and out (if Atkins had fallen out of the first it would've put me in a bind). On offense, I would've expected myself to focus more on the receivers and shop for bargains on the OL, but the tiers have put the value elsewhere. Cutler could really benefit from a strong line, Roddy White at the end of round 6 is pretty nice as a go-to-receiver (at least for the next couple years), and there are some good options still available for a WR2.

by Dan :: Mon, 04/08/2013 - 3:34pm

*runs to the podium*
10 Brian Robison DE
11 Kenny Britt WR

by Yaguar :: Mon, 04/08/2013 - 6:19am

01 Cameron Wake, Right Outside Linebacker
02 Andy Dalton, Quarterback
03 Jason McCourty, Cornerback
04 Jared Veldheer, Left Tackle
05 Ahmad Brooks, Left Outside Linebacker
06 Roddy White, Wide Receiver
07 Dwayne Allen, Tight End
08 Jurrell Casey, Nose Tackle
09 Brandon Spikes, Left Inside Linebacker
10 Cameron Heyward, Left Defensive End
11 Antonio Smith, Right Defensive End

The good pass rushers went fast, but they left the good run-stopping defensive linemen for ages. This should be a very balanced team.