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Thread: Insider Request

  1. #1
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    Aug 2005
    Lafayette, Indiana

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    Member tdubb03's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    Crawfordsville, IN

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    After two days and 255 NFL draft picks, now's the time to evaluate what each team accomplished in New York. There's a clear group of teams that addressed needs and will be better because of it, led by Baltimore, Houston and San Francisco. How all this translates onto the field remains to be seen, but for now the guessing and second-guessing has already begun.

    Arizona Cardinals: GRADE: B
    I give them an A for the first day and a C for the second day. The Cardinals' QB of the future, Matt Leinart, fell into their lap at No. 10 (I had Leinart as the third best player in the draft). Guard Taitusi "Deuce" Lutui (second round) and TE Leonard Pope (third round) were great picks. Defensive tackle Gabe Watson underachieved at Michigan, and I wonder if coach Denny Green will be able to motivate him. OLB Brandon Johnson and DT Jon Lew could be good backups. The Cardinals didn't address the offensive line on the second day -- I thought they would come away with one or two more offensive linemen.

    Atlanta Falcons: GRADE: C
    You have to factor in the trade that brought them defensive end John Abraham. Cornerback Jimmy Williams will help the secondary and was a good second-round pick. RB Jerious Norwood has great speed, gives them some security and can take some of the load off Warrick Dunn. Adam Jennings will help with the return game and as a fifth wide receiver. D.J. Shockley is a developmental quarterback who may eventually be a serviceable backup.

    Baltimore Ravens: GRADE: B+
    The Ravens did a really good job of addressing needs effectively. Their first-round pick, DT Haloti Ngata, will help right away on the interior of the line and, they hope, will free up MLB Ray Lewis. Chris Chester will help on the offensive line, and David Pittman is an ideal nickel defensive back. On the second day, the Ravens helped themselves with WR Demetrius Williams, RB P.J. Daniels, TE Quinn Sypniewski and OLB Ryan LaCasse of Syracuse, who will be a good special-teams player.

    Buffalo Bills: GRADE: C
    While it was a reach to take safety Donte Whitner with the eighth pick, he is a great prospect and I like him. Giving up a third-round pick to get DT John McCargo in the first round was a reach. He's a solid player but not an elite one. Cornerback Ashton Youboty lasted longer than I thought but is a very good pick. Safety Ko Simpson and defensive tackle Kyle Williams are solid. Overall, the Bills reached on both of their first-round picks but drafted players who will help the team.

    Carolina Panthers: GRADE: C
    Carolina didn't draft a wide receiver and didn't take a tight end until the fifth round. Taking RB DeAngelo Williams at No. 27 gives the Panthers good security behind DeShaun Foster. Getting CB Richard Marshall makes up for the loss of Ricky Manning to the Bears. The Panthers made some reaches on OLB James Anderson, OT Rashad Butler and FS Nate Salley, but Jeff King could be a serviceable tight end.

    Chicago Bears: GRADE: B
    The Bears traded out of the first round and were still able to get secondary help in Danieal Manning. Devin Hester is a great athlete, but is he a cornerback or wide receiver? Hester will help the Bears in the return game. Dusty Dvoracek will get worked into the rotation at defensive tackle, and I really like the pick of defensive end Mark Anderson in the fifth round. J.D. Runnels could start as a rookie at fullback and was a great find in the sixth round. I was surprised the Bears didn't address needs at tight end and wide receiver.

    Cincinnati Bengals: GRADE: C
    Cincinnati needed a tight end but never took one. CB Johnathan Joseph was a solid first-round pick and OT Andrew Whitworth was good value in the second round, but DE Frostee Rucker was a reach in the third round. LB A.J. Nicholson slid because he has had off-the-field issues but is good with the pads on. Reggie McNeal isn't going to be an NFL quarterback, so it will be interesting to see where he plays. The Bengals also had a couple of insignificant late picks.

    Cleveland Browns: GRADE: B
    First-round pick Kamerion Wimbley will be a perfect OLB in the 3-4 defense, and D'Qwell Jackson reminds me of Jonathan Vilma. Wide receiver Travis Wilson could be a third or fourth option in the passing game. I like RB Jerome Harrison in the fifth round, and the Browns also got really good value in the sixth round with FB Lawrence Vickers and DT Babatunde Oshinowo of Stanford.

    Dallas Cowboys: GRADE: B-
    In the first round, they drafted a very versatile and talented OLB, Bobby Carpenter. Anthony Fasano is a good tight end, but the Cowboys already have Jason Witten, and more importantly, they didn't get the free safety and offensive line help I thought they needed. Skyler Green brings speed to the return game, and I do like the selection of DT Montavious Stanley in the sixth round.

    Denver Broncos: GRADE: B
    You have to factor in the acquisition of WR Javon Walker when grading the Broncos. I wasn't as high on QB Jay Cutler as much as some people were -- Denver took him at No. 11 -- but he is going to a well-coached team. Tony Scheffler is a very good pass-catching tight end, but taking him in the second round was too high. Guard Chris Kuper and C Greg Eslinger are both ideally suited for Denver's blocking scheme.

    Detroit Lions: GRADE: C+
    I thought I'd be higher on the Lions, but what concerned me was that they passed on Leinart. Ernie Sims (who they picked at No. 9 instead of Leinart) is a good linebacker, and Daniel Bullocks is a good prospect at safety. I also like the pick of RB Brian Calhoun in the third round if they can work him into the rotation with Kevin Jones. Guard Fred Matua was a very good pick, especially in the seventh round.

    Green Bay Packers: GRADE: B
    I gave Green Bay an A after the first day. The Packers had a lot of picks (12), and some were definitely reaches. Linebacker A.J. Hawk, their first-round pick at No. 5, will give the Packers a much-needed face on defense. Offensive tackle Daryn Colledge needs to get stronger and become a better run-blocker. I really like WR Greg Jennings, LB Abdul Hodge and C Jason Spitz. Will Blackmon was both a wide receiver and cornerback at Boston College, but reportedly he will get a chance to play corner initially.

    Houston Texans: GRADE: B+
    I would have taken Reggie Bush with the first overall pick. But I have to respect the pick of Mario Williams, especially if he's consistent from game to game. DeMeco Ryans at linebacker was a solid second-round pick, while Charles Spencer and Eric Winston will help out the offensive line. With TE Owen Daniels and RB Wali Lundy, Houston did a very good job of sizing up the board.

    Indianapolis Colts: GRADE: C
    First-round pick Joseph Addai (at No. 30) is a good blocking running back, but he is not all that dynamic running the ball. Tim Jennings will be a solid nickel cornerback, and I like the pick of LB Freddie Keiaho in the third round.

    Jacksonville Jaguars: GRADE: C+
    First-round pick Marcedes Lewis (No. 28) will get a great opportunity to be the pass-catching tight end the Jaguars need. His UCLA teammate, Maurice Drew, is a good runner and has good hands. He should also help Jacksonville in the return game. DE Brent Hawkins was one of the best defensive ends at the Division I-AA level, and DE James Wyche had great numbers but a disappointing senior season at Syracuse. CB Dee Webb went in the seventh round; he would have been better served staying at Florida for his senior season.

    Kansas City Chiefs: GRADE: C
    I thought the Chiefs would go with a cornerback, but you can't argue with their first-round pick at No. 20, DE Tamba Hali. S Bernard Pollard is a hitter but is questionable in coverage. Brodie Croyle might be the future at quarterback and will be able to learn a lot from Trent Green. I thought the Chiefs would take a cornerback higher than they did (Marcus Maxey in the fifth round). The Chiefs also needed a wide receiver but didn't take one until the sixth round (Jeff Webb of San Diego State).

    Miami Dolphins: GRADE: C
    Cornerback Jason Allen (No. 16), who was recruited by Nick Saban when he was the coach at LSU, has made a great comeback from a hip injury. I was never totally enamored with WR Derek Hagan, but getting him in the third round isn't a bad pick. OT Joe Toledo has a lot of potential but needs some coaching. DT Rodrique Wright's stock seemed to constantly be dropping.

    Minnesota Vikings: GRADE: C+
    Linebacker Chad Greenway was a very good pick at No. 17, while Cedric Griffin is a solid defensive back who needs to play the ball better. Ryan Cook is a versatile center who could be moved elsewhere on the offensive line. QB Tarvaris Jackson went a bit high, but he has a chance to be the Vikings' future quarterback. DE Ray Edwards struggled as a junior, and I thought he needed another season at Purdue.

    New England Patriots: GRADE: B
    Laurence Maroney, selected at No. 21, gives the Patriots a security blanket at running back. WR Chad Jackson was a nice pick in the second round and could have gone in the middle of the first. TE Dave Thomas has excellent hands, while Garret Mills might be more of a fullback. Kicker Stephen Gostkowski was a reach in the fourth round (I didn't think any kickers would get drafted). New England had a great first day and a good second day.

    New Orleans Saints: GRADE: C
    The Saints got the top player on the board in running back Reggie Bush, but I don't understand the pick of safety Roman Harper in the second round when they needed help at cornerback and linebacker. They didn't take a linebacker, and they waited until the sixth round to get a corner (Josh Lay of Pittsburgh). I do like guard Zach Strief in the seventh round, especially since he could have gone as high as the third round.

    New York Giants: GRADE: C+
    DE Mathias Kiwanuka was a reach late in the first round, but he will get a chance to learn from Michael Strahan and Osi Umenyiora. Getting WR Sinorice Moss in the second round was one of the best picks in the draft; he could be the deep threat the Giants' offense needs. Guy Whimper is a versatile offensive lineman and could have gone higher than the fourth round.

    New York Jets: GRADE: B-
    I thought the Jets reached late on the first day with LB Anthony Schlegel and S Eric Smith. They did do a good job of building an offensive line with their two first-round picks, OT D'Brickashaw Ferguson (No. 4) and C Nick Mangold (No. 29). RB Leon Washington was a nice second-day pick. Former Missouri QB Brad Smith went on the second day, but I'm not sure where he'll fit in. DT Titus Adams was a really good pick in the seventh round; I thought he could have gone a bit higher.

    Oakland Raiders: GRADE C:
    Safety Michael Huff, their first-round pick at No. 7, and linebacker Thomas Howard will help the defense, while S Darnell Bing made sense in the fourth round. Weber State's Paul McQuistan will help the offensive line next season, and Cornell guard Kevin Boothe was a solid pick. I didn't give the Raiders a high grade because they didn't address needs along the defensive line and at running back.

    Philadelphia Eagles: GRADE: B
    I really like DT Brodrick Bunkley playing next to Mike Patterson on the defensive line. OT Winston Justice and Georgia OG Max Jean-Gilles will solidify the left side of the offensive line for years to come. Chris Gocong was a solid pick, whether they play him at defensive end or linebacker, and Jeremy Bloom will be a great pick once he shakes off the rust from being away from the game. Still, Bloom can help the Eagles in the return game this season.

    Pittsburgh Steelers: GRADE: C+
    The Steelers have replaced Antwaan Randle El with wide receivers Santonio Holmes (first round, No. 25) and Willie Reid. On defense, getting Anthony Smith at safety makes up for the loss of Chris Hope in free agency. DT Orien Harris could turn out to be one of the better Day 2 picks.

    San Diego Chargers: GRADE: C
    CB Antonio Cromartie (first round, No. 19) could be a great player and has tremendous upside. The Chargers needed a cornerback, and Cromartie is worth the roll of the dice. OT Marcus McNeill is good, but he plays tall and could have trouble with quick, smaller defensive ends. I have no idea what San Diego is getting in QB Charlie Whitehurst -- he's great one week and average the next. I am surprised the Chargers didn't go after a wide receiver, which was one of their bigger need areas.

    San Francisco 49ers: GRADE: B+
    I gave them an A on the first day with tight end Vernon Davis (at No. 6) and OLB Manny Lawson. DE/OLB Parys Haralson, who has good pass-rushing skills, was a solid second-day pick. Penn State QB Michael Robinson landed with the 49ers, but it will be interesting to see what position he ends up playing next season. Lawson's teammate at NC State, Marcus Hudson, could be a versatile safety in the NFL.

    Seattle Seahawks: GRADE: B
    They had only six picks, but I like what the Seahawks did with each of them. You can't argue with CB Kelly Jennings in the first round and DE Darryl Tapp with the 63rd pick. Seattle did a good job of addressing needs early and followed that up with Ohio State OG Rob Sims and USC fullback David Kirtman.

    St. Louis Rams: GRADE: C+
    I like some things the Rams did -- like taking CB Tye Hill at No. 15 -- but they gambled on DT Claude Wroten in the third round. They got two very good tight ends in Joe Klopfenstein and Dominique Byrd, although Byrd dropped because of concerns about his knees. Jon Alston is a fast outside linebacker, while ILB Tim McGarigle will help out on special teams.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers: GRADE: C+
    Tampa Bay went offensive line with its first two picks: OG Davin Joseph and OT Jeremy Trueblood. Joseph might have been high for the first round, while Trueblood is tall and sometimes plays upright. Wide receiver Maurice Stovall really improved under coach Charlie Weis and was a very good third-round pick. Alan Zemaitis is a solid cornerback who has a knack for the ball.

    Tennessee Titans: GRADE: B
    I would have taken Leinart, but Vince Young will be a very good quarterback. RB LenDale White will be highly motivated coming in as a second-round pick. Don't forget that he's reunited with Norm Chow, the former offensive coordinator at USC who holds that position with Tennessee. Calvin Lowry was a very underrated safety at Penn State.

    Washington Redskins: GRADE: C
    The Redskins had only one pick on the first day, and that was used on Rocky McIntosh in the second round (No. 35 overall); McIntosh will come in and start at weakside linebacker. Last year, Washington traded picks in this draft to take QB Jason Campbell last year, and they traded their third-round pick this year to get WR Brandon Lloyd from the 49ers.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Lafayette, Indiana

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  4. #4

    Default Re: Insider Request

    I hate Mel Kiper.

  5. #5
    How are you here? Kegboy's Avatar
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    Jan 2004
    Northside Bias

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    Quote Originally Posted by Believe_in_blue
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    I hate Mel Kiper.
    Who in the hell is Mel Kiper, anyway?

    Come to the Dark Side -- There's cookies!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2005

    Default Re: Insider Request

    Quote Originally Posted by Kegboy
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    Who in the hell is Mel Kiper, anyway?

    Yeah, has he ever put on a jock before?

    Definitely my favorite Polianism.

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