Sunday, May 4, 2008

NFL Draft Analysis! Part 6

Just wanted to start this off by saying that I really hope the Hornets win the NBA championship. LeBron is a whiny bitch who complains about everything, he is amazingly talented, but man he's a bitch. The Celtics are fucking annoying as hell and to be honest I hate everything Boston anyway, so I need the Cavaliers to win that series. In the West, the Spurs are the most boring, obnoxious team possible and thus I pray to GOD that the Hornets win there. The other series is featuring Utah and the Lakers but really I don't care about either of them. Kobe is sweet but the Lakers have been there and done that. Thus its time for someone else and that's why I want the Hornets to pull through. Plus I think Chris Paul is the best point guard in the game and I want him to get a championship... he is awesome. Really really awesome.
OK I'm done sucking Chris Paul's cock, back to football.

  • The New York Football Giants: 7.5 Jeremy Shockey's still on the team (out of 10): The Giants failed to remove the cancer from their backside before and after the draft as they were unable to trade Shockey to the Saints or another team. The Giants, as you remember, had a much easier time winning football games and Eli Manning actually became a decent QB without the loudmouth star. Shockey is full of talent, but his attitude and more importantly his mouth, seem to interfere with the team. Outside of that though, the Giants had a fairly solid draft this past week. They were able to take Kenny Phillips, a safety from the U, who I think is going to turn out to be a great player. He was highly recruited to Miami and was becoming a star during his sophomore season. He hit a slump last year and scouts feel he makes to many mental mistakes, but that's just immaturity. Once he figures that out he has the physical tools of an Ed Reed and so the Giants drafted one hell of a football player. In the third round the Giants again drafted a talented kid. Mario Manningham is a retard. Evidenced by his 6 (out of 50) score on the Wonderlic test. He also lied to NFL teams about smoking pot back in college and a had TERRIBLE interview on some radio show before the draft. However, what he isn't is a bad football player. Manningham has first round potential and while at Michigan he was their best wide receiver, for two years. He can be a star with the right team and the right coaching, and remember Vince Young scored a 6 too. Look for him to supplant Sinorice Moss at the slot position by the seasons end. The Giants addressed the corner back position once again in this draft by picking Terrell Thomas out of USC. The kid has the size and the speed to play corner back in the NFL but he is still a little raw. USC players for some reason don't pan out in the NFL like they should, but he has the potential. In the sixth round the Giants were able to take Andre Woodson, a quarterback out of Kentucky. He has a quirky release and is a poor decision maker at times, but he has a lot of raw potential and could become a decent backup quarterback at the least. At one point during the season people were saying he was the best QB in college, so who knows.
  • The New York Jets: 5 retarded front office members (out of 10): The Jets are the second worst run franchise in all of football. In the past I would of said that the Skins were the worst but I think they have turned a corner and are moving in the right direction. The Raiders however, are just terrible and Al Davis seems to have gone completely insane and that is why the Jets are only #2. Their draft was a little bit confusing but they did get some decent players. Vernon Gholston, from OSU, will be a pass rushing OLB in their 3-4 scheme, and he is a freak. He is the definition of a combine warrior as he worked out extremely well for teams at the combine and at his pro-day. He has all the potential in the world, but he takes plays off and disappears in the big games, see the last two national championships. He should be a force every play with his natural ability but he isn't for some reason. In the NFL, I see him becoming a decent player but again I don't know if that desire is there or not, so I don't see him becoming a star like the Jets hope. Then the Jets, and their stupid front office, decided to trade back into round one and take tight end Dustin Keller from Purdue. Keller was not a first round pick, and he wasn't even the best tight end in this years class, as every scout gave that honor to Fred Davis form USC. The thing about Keller is that he is 6'2 but is only 242 pounds. He is not a strong guy and really isn't a pass catching specialist like Kellen Winslow or Antonio Gates. He might become a decent player but he could have been had in the second or maybe even third round. The trade also took away the Jets second and third round picks and thus they didn't pick again until the fourth round where they got a corner back from San Jose State, Dwight Lowery. He has a lot of talent but went to a small school and still got pushed off the ball a lot. I don't see him developing into much in the NFL. The Jets also drafted Erik Ainge out of Tennessee. I always thought he was a talented player and I remember how hyped he was when he first got to school. He never developed somehow though, but the tools are there so who knows. Then again, this is the Jets so I bet he does nothing.
  • The Oakland Raiders: Al Davis sucks: They don't get a grade simply because it doesn't matter. This team isn't going anywhere. They went out this off-season and spent a TON of money but really didn't get any talent. Javon Walker, Kwame Harris, Gibril Wilson and the rest of the lot are all mediocre players at best. They were able to wrestle DeAngelo Hall from the Falcons which is great because he is talented, and him tagged with Nnamdi Asomugha gives them a great team of corners but really that's all they got. Jamarcus Russell has talent but there isn't enough around him. The Raiders tried to help that by drafting the most talented player in the draft in running back Darren McFadden out of Arkansas. However, he wasn't useful for them because they have a talented backfield already. Their running game last year was pretty good and they have decent running backs on the roster already in incumbent starter Justin Fargas, LaMont Jordan and second year player Michael Bush. They had former Colt Dominic Rhodes as well but cut him after the draft. McFadden is great and should be a great player in the NFL, however there were other players that could have gone at 4 and the Raiders should have taken based on their needs. The trade for Hall left da RAIDAAAS kinda bare with draft picks and they didn't pick again until the fourth round. There they took a corner back from Connecticut named Tyvon Branch who I know little about but who seems to have potential running the 40 in 4.3 seconds. He also has decent size at 5'11. Their next pick was wide receiver Arman Shields from Richmond. He is fast and can stretch the field but will get pushed around in the NFL. I think he could develop into a decent wide receiver as he has shown flashes, but the Raiders have no other talented, or even semi-talented wide receivers on their roster to mentor this kid (Javon Walker is washed up) and so he will probably amount to nothing.
  • Philadelphia Eagles: 7 boos by their fans at the draft (out of 10): Donovan McNabb wanted playermakers. He asked the front office for someone who could come in and be the next TO in Philly and how did the front office respond? They went out and signed Asante Samuel, who is an overrated corner back from New England. He does have some talent but I am not that high on him. Then they tried to trade away their own starting corner back, Lito Sheppard. I don't get the rational here, as having two solid corner backs is always better than having just one, but whatever. Moving on to the Eagles draft, one has to say that it was made by their decision to trade away their first round pick to the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers got HOUSED and sent to the Eagles a second round pick and afourth round pick in this years draft, and their first round pick next year. DAMN thats annoying as a Skins fan, screw you Carolina. The Eagles then went on to take arguably the most athletic wide receiver in this draft in DeShean Jackson out of California in the second round. He will immediately improve their special teams as he is a disgusting return man. He is fast as hell but had a poor junior year and some say he is to small to play wide receiver in the NFL, as he isn't even 170 pounds. I can see him being a decent slot receiver but thats about it. The Eagles also took Trevor Laws, a defensive tackle from Notre Dame. I was really hoping the Skins would take this kid as he is big and strong and can be a force in the middle. He is a high motor kid and never gives up but does lack ideal height and his lower body strength could use some improvement. I do think he will become a good defensive tackle in this league however. From there the Eagles went and took Jack Ikegwuonarguably the best corner back in this draft with their fourth round pick. The kid is from Wisconsin and was a great college corner. He did tear his ACL in pre-draft workouts but he is a solid corner and will become a star for the Eagles once he gets healthy. He may sit out this entire year but he has all the tools, even if he is only 5'10. He isn't dominant in man to man but could become a solid zone corner back.

Well thats it for this post. The rest of the teams will be posted later.

Flagrant Fouls

Marvin Williams just rocked Rajon Rondo. In mid-flight, Rondo got clotheslined. It looked like a mid-air impact between an NFL safety and a WR. Marvin did get a pretty solid piece of the ball, but then got an even bigger piece of Rondo, slamming him into the ground. Stupid play but the Hawks have to be incredibly frustrated. They can't hit the back side of a barn. They had 18 points with just under 10 minutes in the 2nd quarter. With 3:36, the Hawks are down 68-34. Rondo stayed in the game and hit his free throws and is still playing well. Respect.

There have been some other hard fouls in the NBA playoffs like Brendan Haywood's foul (which wasn't that bad) on LeBron and Jason Kidd's flagrant on Jannero Pargo.

As I'm writing this Kevin Garnett just knocked Zaza Pachulia on his ass. It looked a lot like a crack back block in football. I can't believe the commentators were saying it was a clean play. Garnett lined him up, lowered his shoulder, and put his weight behind it. A little retaliation from the Celtics.

I don't have a problem with a rough, physical basketball game, but taking out defenseless players going up for a dunk or layup definitely crosses the line. Hard fouls aren't the biggest problem in the NBA today, nor is letting players (all-stars especially) to travel up and down the court. The worst part of the NBA today is flopping, which is also the worst part of soccer. Floppers take the game out of the players' hands and put it into the often incompetent hands of the referees. For example, in game 4 of the San Antonio Spurs, Tony Parker takes a big dive over Stoudemire's leg, throws the ball out of bounds, and he gets two shots. Are you serious? In the 1500s, the conquistadores brought smallpox and other diseases to the new world, infecting the entire Aztec empire. Foreigners like Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker, Pau Gasol, and others have brought the worst aspect of the great game of soccer to the NBA. Foreign players aren't bad for the game. Actually, several of them are better than American players. But flopping ruins the game. Here's another video to an already media-rich post:

Thursday, May 1, 2008

NFL Draft Analysis! Part 5

Well after the first quarter, the 76ers were on pace to score 48 points. With 1:20 left in the 2nd quarter, they now have 30 points. NOW ON PACE FOR 60 POINTS!!!!!!!11 Samuel Dalembert's haircut is ridiculous. There aren't any pics online yet, but I'll try to post one later on. It reminds me of the late, great Darrent Williams' mohawk/cornrow combo, also known as the frohawk. Darrent's was still better.

Before I jump into my analysis, you might find this interesting: Buzz Bissinger allegedly had sex with a horse. Have you seen this? Have you heard about this?

  • Miami Dolphins: 5 wins (in 2008): I'll make this one short and sweet. Henne, if he doesn't beat out John Beck in the pre-season battle, will be starting before November. Reaching back into my bag of tricks, I've been saying that Chad Henne will be a better pro than Matt Ryan. The Dolphins got their franchise QB while picking up Jake Long with the first pick and Philip Merling in the second round. Before his sports hernia, Merling was predicted to be the first DE drafted and he will help the Dolphins defensive line and can develop to take Jason Taylor's jobs when he retires (or is traded). Jake Long will be a good, but not great tackle. Kendall Langford, the DE out of Hampton, has great size at over 6'5'' 287 and although scouts have said that he lacks speed, he doesn't need to be that fast to play DE in a 3-4. They could have, and should have, taken a LB in the draft. Yes, I feel like I have predictive power today.
  • Minnesota Viqueens: 74 million reasons to hope that the Jared Allen experiment works (out of one hundred million dollars): Well, they needed a safety because Dwight Smith couldn't stay away from the hippie lettuce and navigated 10,000 lakes eventually making his way out of Minnesota, sailing into the sunset in the Love Boat. out of the . Darren Sharper is a dinosaur. Tyrell Johnson will be useful. John David Booty will not. I never thought Matt Leinart was any good. I think JDB is worse. Guion could be underrated, but he won't play much anyway because Fat Pat Williams signed a three year extension last year. They had two other picks which are more or less insignificant.
  • New England Patriots: 4.5 illegally filmed practices (out of 10): Bitch Tit Bill couldn't play fair, so Roger Goodell took away their first round draft pick (#31). What's that? Oh he didn't take away the one they got from the 49ers? And Goodell let the Patriots off easy? Ahhhh, now I understand. They traded their #7 pick to the Saints and moved back to #10. Good trade I suppose. The Pats picked up a great college linebacker in Jerod Mayo. He can play a little bit. CBs Terrence Wheatley and Jonathan Wilhite fills a need, so does OLB Shawn Crable (with Rosevelt Colvin gone). Bo Ruud, Barrett Ruud's brother, should get some good time on special teams. Kevin O'Connell? Congratulations, Tom Brady has become the best dump down passer in the history of the game and is able to throw deep because he has the best WR ever (physically). O'Connell won't be anything more than a backup...that is unless it's snowing during a playoff game, Tom gets hurt, Kevin comes in, the tuck rule pretty much giftwraps a victory for him, and then he makes a living throwing bench routes for the next decade. I'm not impressed by this draft, but the Patriots probably had film on these guys that no one else did. Matt Walsh FTW!
  • New Orleans Saints: Anyway, like I was sayin', shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, sautee it. Dey's uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There's pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich, and shrimp running backs named Reggie Bush. That- that's about it.: Sedrick Ellis is a great pick. He is a little bit smaller than Glenn Dorsey (an inch shorter and 9 pounds lighter) but has a muuuuuch more explosive. Dorsey is a big dude and is a force, but Ellis is a freak of nature. Tracy Porter, the Indiana CB, is also a solid selection. What baffles me is how Jason David started at RCB the entire year. If David was lined up opposite John Foppe, I guarantee you that Foppe would be celebrating in the end zone with JD in his wake. They signed Aaron Glenn in the offseason, but he is a 14 year veteran and isn't more than a stop gap until Porter gets up to speed. DeMario Pressley had about as much hype as Mario Williams did going into his senior season because of his size and speed. However, Pressley has had some durability issues so it'll be interesting how he handles the NFL game. Carl Nicks has a mean streak and with some coaching could be an option at RT in the future. Wisconsin kicker Taylor Mehlhaff was a need pick only because Olindo Mare still isn't quite sure how to kick a football. Adrian Arrington didn't have a spectacular career at Michigan and scouts keep talking about how he lacks explosiveness and burst - which means he won't be able to separate from NFL corners. But he was taken with the 30th pick in the 7th round, so if he never catches a pass in a game, no big deal.
Facts don't inhibit me! I am proud that my "nebulous" voice is able to perpetuate the future.

NFL Draft Analysis! Part 4

I think that outside of the ESPN studio, Todd McShay and Mel Kiper actually do like each other. I think its all a show that ESPN has put on to raise viewership. It definitely works too, because people are always talking about it (need proof, look at NFL Draft Analysis! Part Two). However, I do think that the two of them know what they are talking about. Both Kiper and McShay have done an admirable job projecting this years draft, and now it seems that McShay has gotten bored and has now posted a mock draft for 2009 at ESPN, you can check it out here:

However that is not what I'm here to do, I'm here to talk about this years draft. To talk about the ridiculous 34 trades that happened this weekend, or the even more ridiculous fact that 8, count 'em 8, offensive lineman were taken in the first round. Over 25% of the first round were offensive lineman, and you don't think people watched the Giants defensive line dominate the Patriots offensive line?
But for now I am going to look at the next four teams 2008 NFL Drafts.

  • Houston Texans: 7 Reggie Bush's (out of 10): The biggest knock on the Texans draft is that they didn't take Reggie Bush, oh wait that was two years ago. It's news again though because the Texans offensive coordinator recently made a swipe at Reggie Bush, calling him nothing more than a third down back (and to date that's being generous), while talking about why the team picked a similar style player Steve Slaton in the third round ( I love it. But back to their draft. The actual biggest problem with the Texans draft, according to most experts, is that they used their #1 pick on Duane Brown an offensive tackle form Virginia Tech (another one?). Brown is said to be an elite athlete, but he is raw and extremely unpolished. I know the Redskins were looking at him as their second round pick, either at #48 or #51. Brown went at #26. The Texans were able to trade back with the Ravens and acquire another third round pick, which was then used to take Steve Slaton. They did pick up a potential starting corner back in the third round, as they didn't have a second round pick, by taking Antwaun Molden from Eastern Kentucky. Molden was from a small school which hurt him, but he showed great ability at the combine running the 40 in 4.389 and has decent height at 6'0. With Dunta Robinson expected to miss some time next season with a knee injury, this pick was a necessity and it seems that the Texans made a decent choice. They also drafted the younger brother of Marion Barber III, in safety Dominique Barber from Minnesota in the 6th round. If he plays like his brother he will be a force on special teams.
  • Indianapolis Colts: 8 future Super Bowl Trophies (out of 10): The Colts did not have a first round draft pick after trading it to the 49ers last year when they traded up to get OT Tony Ugoh. They did however have nine other draft picks. With these nine picks the Colts took three offensive lineman, two linebackers, two tight ends, a running back and a wide receiver. Mel Kiper says that the Colts took three of his top five rated centers in this draft, and that their second round choice, Mike Pollack out of Arizona State has the potential to move and become a decent starting NFL guard. The Colts also took a stud inside linebacker, in my opinion, in Philip Wheeler from Georgia Tech. He doesn't have the physical tools that some of the great players have but he does have heart and he is always all over the field. Their fifth round pick was also another player who didn't measure that well, but that was a solid football player. Mike Hart from Michigan ran a slow 40 time, somewhere in the 4.7 range. He dropped dramatically because of this, but he's a second round talent. All Hart did was start for one of the most prestigious college football teams in the nation since he was a freshman. He was their leader and their best player and that has to mean something. Remember the Colts seem to have a thing for identifying running back talent, see Edgerrin James and Joseph Addai.
  • Jacksonville Jaguars: 6 stupid trades (out of 10): Guys like Mel Kiper don't understand why the Jaguars didn't trade their first round pick for Jason Taylor of the Miami Dolphins, when instead they traded three other picks to move up to #8 and take Derrick Harvey. I disagree with him and think that trading away a first round pick for a player who is 33 and on the decline is retarded and a waste of a pick. Now, I'm not saying that trading up for Harvey wasn't a mistake either. Harvey is a decent defensive lineman from Florida, but did not deserve to go in the top 10. He was a reach there and that could come back to haunt the Jags. He does have the potential to be a decent player and could end up being a starter, but at #8 it was a little high. Then the Jags traded up once again, giving up more draft picks to get defensive end Quentin Groves from Auburn. Again he is another player with a lot of potential but a player whose production dropped his senior year and whose heart has been questioned. These two players however, are expected to become the cornerstone of the Jags line, and if it works out they will have pretty solid set of ends. Moving on from here the rest of the Jags draft is pretty weak as they traded away most of their picks. They were able, however, to take corner back Trae Williams from South Florida who could start along side stud Rashean Mathis. The kid is a little small but he seems to play bigger than his size and with the right coaching and mentor (Mathis is a pro bowler) he could become a decent player in the NFL. There grade is low due to their lack of draft picks.
  • Kansas City Chiefs: Wine 'em Dine 'em 69 'em (out of 10): That is the name of former Chiefs defensive lineman Jared Allen's restaurant, and thats fucking hilarious. Jared Allen did a lot of great things for the Chiefs during his tenure there but the best thing he did was get traded to the Vikings. The Vikings got straight ROBBED and it really helped out the rebuilding Chiefs. For Allen the Chiefs received the Vikings first round draft pick, both of the Vikings third round picks and the teams swapped six round picks as well. Once again, that is highway robbery. Allen is good, but thats a ton to give up. However, the Chiefs receive such a high grade for doing such a great job drafting. They took arguably the best player on the entire board in defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey from LSU. Dorsey fills a MAJOR hole for the Chiefs in the interior and should become a force for them. He could make up for the loss of Allen in the long run if he develops properly. Then the Chiefs were able to use the Vikings first round pick, #17 and some other picks to trade up with the Lions to take guard Brandon Albert from Virginia. Albert has had his cock sucked by scouts since the season ended and saw his stock rise dramatically, he has potential but I'm just not as high on him as they are. Albert, who projects to play tackle in the NFL, is stated to be one of the better lineman in the draft and he has great athletic ability, but he is going to be asked to move outside and that could be tougher than people think. Him and Dorsey should help solidify the trenches for the Chiefs and together, make this a pretty solid draft. The Chiefs weren't done there. In the second round the Chiefs were able to get corner back Brandon Flowers from Virginia Tech, a player who had first round talent but slipped a little near the end of the pre-draft process. With Ty Law no longer with the team, corner back was a big area of concern and Flowers should be able to start come the middle of the season. Another pretty nasty pick was third round running back Jamaal Charles out of Texas. This kid has a ton of talent and should team nicely with star (yet regressing) Larry Johnson. They were also able to take tight end Tony Gonzalez's future replacement in third round pick Brad Cottam. The kid came out of Tennessee and is really raw. But he is 6'7 and is a monster in the trenches. If he can learn the system and get some good coaching he could become a force.

The rest will come later on during the weekend.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

We interrupt your regularly scheduled posts for this special update...

The team by team draft analysis has proven to be a more weighty task than anticipated. It's finals, give us a break. Anyhow, in the past few days, numerous, important stories have developed; stories that cannot be ignored.

  • The Blogosphere is a twitter due to last night's Costas Now. Buzz Bissinger, author of Friday Night Lights, flipped out on Will Leitch, editor of Deadspin, and condemned all blogs. Now, I have met Bissinger. He is a nice enough guy, as long as you are complementing his work. The man clearly thinks very highly of himself. I have not met Leitch, but I am fairly certain he is not an arrogant douche. Obviously there are crappy blogs on the interwebs, but Deadspin is not one of those. Ken Tremendous, aka Mose Schrute, of the Fire Joe Morgan Blog, put it best; to condemn the entire medium of blogging based on some garbage is as absurd as condemning all books because Ann Coulter is a giant idiot (I'm paraphrasing obviously). Tons of "old" media folks make similar arguments, and truly, it serves to make a lot of smart people look like idiots. Blogger Solidarity!

  • Sean Avery ruptured his spleen. You may recall a similar fate befalling Chris Simms a few years back. The Rangers are down 3-0, so him being out for the year is seemingly irrelevant, but hopefully he will be alright. All indications are that he will be, but he had a freaking heart attack because of this, so it is a bit frightening.

  • Roger Clemens had an affair. Normally, I would not care, because tons of professional athletes have shady deals going on, but this story is important for two reasons. First off, it reflects poorly on his character, especially because he denied it, despite the country singer who he reportedly slept with confirming the allegations. This is relevant because his entire defense against Brian McNamee is based on character. More importantly, Mindy McCready, the singer/ lady of note in this case, was 15 years old at the time that this affair began. Roger, on the other hand, was older than that. This would fall under the statutory rape law, which last time I checked, was a major crime. Double Uh-Oh for Clemens.

  • Speaking of statutory rape (how often does one get to type that?!), Demetrius Bell was drafted in the 7th round of the NFL draft by the Buffalo Bills. His father? Karl Malone. Bell and Malone have had limited contact, and when they did meet, Malone was evidently a real asshole. Now Malone has fathered his fair share of kids, but this is not news. Shawn Kemp and Travis Henry could probably start their own country with all of the illegitimate kids they have. What is relevant is that Bell's mother was evidently 12 or 13 years old when she gave birth to Demetrius. This means that Malone, who was in college at the time, is clearly guilty of statutory rape. It is one thing to be an asshole and a non-existent father, but to father a child with a 13 year old is completely unacceptable. I may be alone in this feeling, but statutory rape should probably be a bigger deal than Josh Howard's pot habit, or even Steroids. That's just my opinion.
  • Currently, Liverpool and Chelsea are playing an awesome soccer game, for the right to play Manchester United in the Champion's League Final. Now, I can't stand MLS Soccer, and I hate that ESPN tries to make me care about it. But Champions League Soccer is not only watchable, but fairly entertaining, and this game even more so. Check it out for sure. the final is May 21st, mark it down.
Until next time, be safe, and try not to sleep with minors.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

NFL Draft Analysis! Part Three

If you didn't catch the Manchester United vs Barcelona today, you missed an awesome game. There were a lot of near misses by both teams and until about the last 5 minutes where Milito squandered every offensive opportunity, you had a feeling that Barcelona had a great chance going to tie it and get to the Champions League Finals. It's the first time that two English clubs will be playing in the championship game. You missed this...

  • Dallas Cowboys: 8.5 buckets of popcorn (out of 10): The only thing I didn't like about the Cowboys' draft was that they passed on drafting a WR. Their starters are getting up their in age and their backups really can't hold their own. Maybe Jerry Jones knows something we all don't. Felix Jones is not Reggie Bush, although they are built the same way. I watched a bunch of the Arkansas games this past season and there were several occasions where Felix Jones looked better as Robin than McFadden did as Batman. He is actually a football player. Jones should be able to have some impact in the return game. Sticking with the running backs, Tashard Choice is a force. He would get about 30 carries a game at Georgia Tech and would only look stronger as the game progressed. Not entirely sure whey they took him, with Barber already in Dallas - must be for insurance purposes. Mike Jenkins is one of the most athletic CBs to come out of this years draft and has some return abilities and fills one of their top needs. Martellus Bennett is enormous and pretty quick for his size. He's a tough player with good hands.
  • Denver Broncos: B: The Broncos did a pretty good job addressing their needs in the draft. Out of their first 3 picks, 2 were offensive lineman. Boise State OT Ryan Clady might be good enough to start right away, which might be Coach Shanatan's plan. They took Kent State center Korey Lichtensteiger for added depth. Eddie Royal reminds me of Brandon Marshall and will be one of Cutler's favorite targets, if not only because hey doesn't have that many other options to throw to. ASU RB Ryan Torain is a big back at 6'0'' 222 and if the offensive line can correct some mistakes, should be able to find some good holes to run through - especially in Denver's zone blocking scheme. Selvin Young looked pretty good last year but can't do it alone. Travis Henry is a Bronco but he has 9 kids with 9 different women and has some off the field issues, so drafting Torain is smart. Joshua Barrett could be better than Hamza Abdullah, so another good selection. Finally, I like the selection of Peyton Hillis. He has wheels, can block and can catch the ball out of the backfield.
  • Detroit Lions: 6.5 non-winning seasons (out of 10): If anyone is curious, the Lions have actually had 9 non-winning seasons in the past 10 years. 5 of their 9 picks were defensive players, which was a good idea in theory, given that the Lions' defense sucked. Jordon Dizon was a necessary pick, Kevin Smith will certainly help spark a dormant running game, especially with the addition of Gosder Cherilus - the run blocking Boston College OT. I like the selection of Purdue DE Cliff Avril. He led his time in sacks and tackles for a loss. He is a hybrid player, much like Vernon Gholston, who can play OLB as well. For the record, I am not convinced that Gholston is a can't miss player. He disappeared during games a little too often at OSU, which means he probably took plays off. Sure, he's a workout warrior...but so is Adam Archuleta and he hurts defenses more than he helps. In any case, Avril should pick a position and master it, instead of rotating between the two like he did in college. The Kenneth Moore pick is okay. He had 98 catches and over 1,000 yards in his final year at Wake Forest, but the Lions can't even find ways to utilize Roy Williams and Calvin Johnson to their full potential. Don't expect to be hearing Moore's name very often in 2008.
  • Green Bay Packers: 10 beer basted brats (out of 10): I wouldn't expect anything less from the greatest football team in all the land, than a perfect draft. 19-0 here we come. But in all serious, I thought it was a solid draft with players with a lot of upside and potential. Ted Thompson has a pretty good eye for relatively unknown WRs (see Greg Jennings, James Jones). Jordy Nelson can ball. He is our second tallest WR behind Ruvell Martin, who by default found himself a member of the Fab 5. What I most like about Nelson is he can catch the ball in traffic, doesn't shy way from contact and is great after the catch. All three talents are perfect for the west coast offensive scheme up in Green Bay. Driver is on his last legs and Nelson will add some competition for the 3rd and 4th receiving spots as a rookie. Patrick Lee, the Auburn CB, is physical, so he'll fit right into our bump and run defense. What I don't like about Lee is that he's 24 and for some reason he brings back memories of Ahmad Carroll, because he might be too physical downfield. Lee is probably best suited in a zone defense, but hopefully Harris and Woodson can be his mentor and he can develop into a starter, instead of just a sub-package CB. Jermichael Finley can also pick up yards after the catch. He's 6'4.5'' and has deceptive speed. I only wish he was a better blocker. In any case with Bubba gone, Finley is a good pick. Jeremy Thompson is apparently Ted Thompson's "boy", so I expect nothing but good things. We picked up two OTs in the later rounds which was necessary. OG may have been a bigger need, but the draft is for the future and Clifton and Tauscher are getting pretty old. Brohm was a steal in the 2nd round (25th pick). Aaron Rodgers will start and hopefully can stay healthy and develop into the next Steve Young. Rodgers shouldn't worry too much about the Pack drafting Brohm because 1) we usually go with the best player available and 2) behind Rodgers we had Craig Nall 3) we needed depth. Go Pack, Go.

Monday, April 28, 2008

NFL Draft Analysis! Part Two

I think Mel Kipah Joonyah and Todd "Nemesis" McShay should battle in a no holds barred cage fight. They hate each other and Kiper obviously cannot handle another draft savant on his block. Kiper has all the characteristics of a human being: blood, flesh, skin, hair; but not a single, clear, identifiable emotion, except for frustration of not predicting the draft correctly and disgust for McShay. Something horrible is happening inside of him and he doesn't know why. Kiper's nightly bloodlust has overflown into his days. He feels lethal, on the verge of frenzy. I think his mask of sanity is about to slip. Personally, I think it's because T-Mac called the Mr. Irrelevant selection 15 minutes before it happened. And now for the analysis:

  • Carolina Panthers: 7 Scissoring Cheerleaders (out of 10): The Panthers had 2 first round picks by trading their 2009 1st round selection to the Philadelphia Eagles. John Fox has nothing to lose but his job, so why not right? They took Jonathan Stewart with the 13th pick and Jeff Otah from Pitt with the 19th. I like Stewart. He runs hard and fast and should be able to compliment DeAngelo Williams nicely. Otah gives the Panthers some youth along the offensive line and he could compete for a starting spot this fall. Godfrey isn't spectacular but he can contribute on special teams. Dan Connor was a steal in the 3rd round as he was predicted to go as early as midway through the first round at one point and is PSUs all time leading tackler. Tar Heel Hilee Taylor got picked up in the 7th round w00t. With 9 draft picks, maybe half of those will pan out.
  • Chicago Bears: A pretty good, but not great deep dish pizza. I would still rather have a thin crust pizza: Kevin Smith will start because Cedric Benson is about as useful as Ricky Williams is to the Dolphins. Chris Williams is good. Earl Bennett was productive at Vandy and will help the Bears' awful WR corps. They have no chance of winning the NFC North. LSU safety Craig Steltz may also start opposite Danieal Manning.
  • Cincinnati Bengals: C for Convicts: Marvin Lewis talked about focusing on drafting pass rushers before the draft. Pass Rushers Drafted: 0. I love the Keith Rivers pick. With Sedrick Ellis off the board, the Bengals took the the second of the 10 USC players to be drafted this past weekend. Although he has some durability concerns, Rivers can be a dominant force at the LB position for years to come. He is a freak athlete and has a good nose for the football. The Bengals won't break .500, but Rivers should have a similar impact to the one Patrick Willis had last year in San Fran. Ah...Jerome Simpson - the measurable monster. He's a skinny bugger at 190 lbs but he's 6'2'' and should be able to add some pounds without sacrificing speed. He has great reach because of his LONG ARMS!!!!!!! and has the biggest hands of any receiver in the draft. He runs in the mid 4.4s and has a 43 inch vertical. He was once SportsCenter's #1 play with a one hander lander. He also hurdled a defender once in a spectacular fashion. We'll see if all those measurables can translate into productivity at the professional level. Andre Caldwell will be a bust just like all the other UFlorida WRs. Pat Sims was a good pick in the 3rd round. Sims was considered by many to be one of the top 5 DTs. The Bengals never learn though. They drafted Jason Shirley, the DT out of Fresno State, who has been trials pending on two DUIs and one hit and run. The Bengals have had 10 players arrested in the past 14 months and if I had to guess, Shirley will be wearing white stripes, instead of orange ones, before long. Anthony Collins could develop into a good OT after a couple of years. Mike Williams, I mean Mario Urrutia, will be a non-factor.
  • Cleveland Browns: B for the Browns and Brady Quinn! NOW I'M DONE (almost)!: Beau Bell was an excellent pick in the 4th round. He racked up 126 tackles (10 for a loss), 4 interceptions, 5 forced fumbles, and 3 sacks. Those are some impressive stats, even if he was just playing for football powerhouse UNLV. In a couple years the Browns could have one of the better linebacking corps with D'Qwell Jackson, Kamerion Wimbley, Andra Davis and Beau Bell. It's too early to tell how Hubbard will develop, but he could be an exciting player. Taking everything into consideration (trading this years 1st round pick for the overrated Brady Quinn, trading their 2nd round pick for Packers' DT Corey Williams, and their 3rd for the Lions' Shaun Rogers) they had a very good draft, even if technically they drafted two DTs who are approaching their 30s. In any case, Rogers and Williams will start and greatly improve the Browns' defensive line.

NFL Draft Analysis! Part One

The NFL Draft, one of my favorite sporting events, went down this weekend. I don't care if it is just an over-hyped reading of names, I love it. After the draft, everyone and their mother decides to grade the draft performance of all of the teams, despite the fact that none of the players have played a single NFL down. They use letter grades, stars, thumbs, and all sorts of nonsensical other rating systems to assess these performances. Mel Kiper Jr. Only gave out one A, because his wisdom has evidently gone to his head. Anyway, I am not above this sure-to-be-wrong evaluating. In fact, mine will be even better, as I will use multiple rating systems to grade each team. Here we go, in alphabetical order (because why not?):

  • Arizona Cardinals: 8 out of 10: The Cardinals had a fairly productive draft. They ended up with three players who at one time or another were in the first round discussion. Dominique Rodgers- Cromartie is evidently quite the athlete, and since he is related to Antonio Cromartie, he must be good (Logic!). Doucet and Campbell are both very good athletes who can be quality pros, and Doucet provides insurance in case Anquan Boldin pulls some holdout nonsense (he is unhappy with his contract). Kenny Iwebema is a nice value pick, and he and Campbell should serve to fill some of the void left by Calvin Pace. I don't like the pick of some Richmond Running Back in round 5 when Mike Hart was still available, but the same complaint can be levied against almost every team, so I won't hold that against them all. Solid draft overall.
  • Atlanta Falcons: 6 fighting dogs (out of 10): Atlanta obviously hopes to make Matt Ryan their franchise quarterback, and make fans forget about Mike Vick. Sorry Atlanta, Mike Vick won't be forgotten about that easily. Moreover, while Matt Ryan is a good quarterback, he is a bit overrated. This post from the Sunday Morning Quarterback Blog shows this, with statistical evidence! I could only wish our blog was so scien-terrific. Also of note in that post is the quality players who were passed over. There are at least 6 or 7 guys on that list who I would of loved one of my teams to draft. Back to the Falcons... They also traded back into the first round for Sam Baker. Baker is a good tackle, but should not have been a first rounder. This was a desperation reach since he was the best tackle left. they would have been better off trading up earlier, since they obviously wanted a cornerstone tackle to protect Ryan. Still a reach though. Their next three picks were all very good values. Curtis Lofton is a good backer, and Chevis Jackson and Harry Douglas are both good players. The Mike Hart issue comes up again in round 6, as they drafted Thomas Brown, who could not even start for his college team, over Michigan's all time leading rusher. Makes a lot of sense. Anyway, the 2nd and 3rd rounds made an otherwise poor draft into a average one.
  • Baltimore Ravens: A+: What a great draft. Sure, Joe Flacco is a bit of an unknown quantity, but he seemingly has better raw ability than the rest of the Quarterbacks in this draft. The real reason they get an A+ is because of two picks; Ray Rice and Tom Zbikowski. Obviously, I am a giant homer for Ray Rice (Westchester!) and think he is a great value at pick 50. He and McGahee should form a formidable backfield duo. Zbikowski is certifiably insane, and should be a special teams dynamo, until the day he is able to start next to Ed Reed at safety. While I would never have him return kicks, because he does not call fair catches and will probably get decapitated at the NFL Level, his insanity and toughness make him a great pick. Tavares Gooden was also a very productive player on a mediocre Miami team last year, but he should learn a lot from Ray Lewis and become a quality player. A+ Baltimore!
  • Buffalo Bills: a dozen 35 cent wings: This draft left me relatively unenthused. James Hardy was a good value pick, and McKelvin fills a need nicely. Did this draft do enough to make them a playoff team, with Trent Edwards and Marshawn Lynch leading the way? Nope. But it was not bad either.
Okay, that's enough for now. Obviously I only reviewed four teams, but I am tired. I promise I will have all 32 teams reviewed by the end of the week. Keep reading!