Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/27/2009 10:14 AM EDTTo me this draft was as much about 2010 as it was 2009. We only had 31 players signed into 2010. Wilfork will be demanding big money as will Seymour and Mankins. There is no way we can keep all three of those guys. BB apparently doesn't think so either and must feel Brace will take over for Wilfork after the season. Brace is not as good but all he has to do is stuff the run and come out on passing plays, just like Wilfork.
Drafting three OL types gives us depth to replace Neal and Kaz, hopefully we resign Mankins. Signing Peppers or Taylor are very real possibilities given we did not address rush OLB in the draft. Trading Hobbs and possibily Neal and Kaz would free up the cap to get Peppers. Carolina drafted a rush DE with their first selection so they can't be feeling good about the Peppers situation and didn't address their biggest need (OL depth) until the 5th round. The pieces are in place gentlemen.
A big kuddos to No1badguy. He was telling me all during the draft that our first pick would be at 34 and that we'd trade 89. Coming out of this draft with 6 of top 100 and having 3 seconds next year was a major victory, huh Dr. Z?
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/27/2009 10:27 AM EDTI would have been happy with Butler at 23 so to get him at 41 plus the other picks was HUGE. I wanted Chung at 47 so the order was just reversed. Miami would have been all over Brace at 44 so we had to trade up to get him. Just like Ted Washington, the Pats are not going to bust the bank for a two down player in Wilfork. So the Brace pick was good cap management. Replacing big Sey would be harder so perhaps they spend the money to keep him past 09. I was originally thinking Ziggy Hood thinking Sey would be the odd man out but this works too. The only surprise was not addressing rush OLB with the top 4 but this might mean BB has other plans (Taylor, Peppers). I was also shocked we passed on Maualuga at 34 but there must be something about him we didn't know.
I had Vollmer shooting up my board; he was in my top 100. I think he can take over for Kaz (if indeed I'm right) at RT for a year and eventually move to LT.
Again, coming out of this with the players we got plus landing 3 2nds for next year makes me give this draft a A-.
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/27/2009 1:03 PM EDTYep. You hit it on the head as usual Faucet. This is a 2010 draft.
LT, NT, CB, SS.
And paving the way for an impact player by shifting two more thirds into seconds.
It doesn't get any better.
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/27/2009 1:31 PM EDTZB and faucetman are right. We drafted quality players that could be solid starters in two or three years and we positioned ourselves very nicely in 2010 draft. Very smart shrewd moves on BBs part. I like Vollmer`s footwork and believe that Scarnnechia will coach him up to be a starter. Also think he can add some weight to his frame. With many of the players the PAts drafted it will be a case of who will be a player in two or three years rather than trading up and hocking the house on a supposed `impact player`. Kudos to all who said BB would not trade up in this draft. ZB, faucet and others all said that he would trade down or out (2010 draft) and thats what happened. It might seem like an odd thing to say, but the 2010 draft will be a very interesting draft for the Pats.
I like MacKenzie, but I really don`t know much about him. Like Chung, Brace, Butler, Tate and Vollmer alot.
I thought Ayers might have been on the Pats radar with the original 1st and once he was gone trading down became a possibility and, eventually, the reality. Depth at OL is huge. Kaczur is the weak link and Light is getting up there in age. I sincerely hope that Mankins stays, but from earlier draft threads many of us discussed whether Sey, Wilfork or Mankins would stick around. With the depth we drafted at OL and DL I still believe this is a legit question looking ahead.
The secondary improved, depth at OL and DL improved. I still don`t know that Peppers is on the radar, but the 2010 picks give the Pats flexibility that other Peppers suitors don`t have.I`d think Taylor would be greater possibility.
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/27/2009 1:37 PM EDTI agree. A- based on how I project these kids.
McKenzie was my fourth rounder. So having him in the third is great.
I think the happy with Butler at #23 underscores what this draft was about. There really weren't any players worth taking at #23.
As the buzz grouped up around English it now makes sense. But I look at picks 17-29 and can't help but think that except for the team that left with Maclin, most of those teams paid premiums for players that weren't appreciably better than the top 20 in the second round.
People call this draft weak, but I disagree. I think there were no real super-blue chips kids, but that was obivous.
The real missing talent segment was the solid meat between #14 and #25. Which I think really just shifted up in some parts.
But, there were players rather deep into round two that I would have been comfortable withat #26 or or lower.
26-46 . . . is Matthews that much better than Barwin? I don't think so. Is Britt head and shoulder better than Robiskie? I don't think so. I would put Brace and Hood in a dead heat myself, with Brace being the more solid if less sexy pick.
Here is what I know. Walk with me back a year. This is the bottom 12 of last year's first compared to the top 12 of 2009's second. I think as time wears on people will understand that this draft was weak up top, the middle shifted to the top, and had a long tail.
Are Duane Brown or Baker better prospects than Britton? I don't think so. Kentwan Balmer or Brace? How much you want to bet Brace would start now for the 49ers, and Balmer was on the bench all last season. I didn't like Balmer at all.
And it goes on. Lawrence Jackson verus Everette Brown? Alphonso Smith and Butler versus Jenkins and Talib.
I think this year's top of the second was better than last year's bottom of the first. Thus BB played it right. Why take players at #23 or #26 when low first round value was there to be had through the middle of the second. They got a better corner than was there in the bottom of the first (I liked Talib, I love Butler) they got a better safety (I thought Phillips was over-rated and I love Chung) and a far better 3-4 DT prospect than could be found anywhere in 2008.
I was prepared to take Chung or Butler in the first, and I wouldn't have scoffed if they took Brace either. I would have torn my Pats blanket to shreds if NE had traded down last season for Kenny Phillips, Mike Jenkins or Kentwan Balmer. I wouldn't have even liked Balmer or Phillips as high second rounders last season if they traded up for them. I thought they were mid second/low second scrubs that would be reached at. The only players in that group that were really good were Mendenhall and Johnson, but last year was insanely deep at RB, where this year was weak.
Plus they were able to pick up two seconds. A all the way man, with a minus for not addressing TE at some point. Even to get a body in there.
20 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Aqib Talib Cornerback Kansas
21 Atlanta Falcons Sam Baker Offensive tackle USC
22 Dallas Cowboys Felix Jones Running back Arkansas
23 Pittsburgh Steelers Rashard Mendenhall Running back Illinois
24 Tennessee Titans Chris Johnson † Running back East Carolina
25 Dallas Cowboys Mike Jenkins Cornerback South Florida
26 Houston Texans Duane Brown Offensive tackle Virginia Tech
27 San Diego Chargers Antoine Cason Cornerback Arizona
28 Seattle Seahawks Lawrence Jackson Defensive end USC
29 San Francisco 49ers Kentwan Balmer Defensive tackle UNC
30 New York Jets Dustin Keller Tight end Purdue
31 New York Giants Kenny Phillips Safety Miami (FL)
33 Detroit Lions Louis Delmas Safety Western Michigan
34 New England Patriots Patrick Chung Safety Oregon
35 St. Louis Rams James Laurinaitis Inside linebacker Ohio State
36 Cleveland Browns Brian Robiskie Wide receiver Ohio State
37 Denver Broncos Alphonso Smith Cornerback Wake Forest
38 Cincinnati Bengals Rey Maualuga Inside linebacker USC
39 Jacksonville Jaguars Eben Britton Offensive tackle Arizona
40 New England Patriots Ron Brace Defensive tackle Boston College
41 New England Patriots Darius Butler Cornerback Connecticut
42 Buffalo Bills Jairus Byrd Cornerback Oregon
43 Carolina Panthers Everette Brown Defensive end Florida State
44 Miami Dolphins Pat White Quarterback, wide receiver West Virginia
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/27/2009 1:54 PM EDTBB felt there was better value in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th rounds. He wasn`t prepared to pay a steep price by trading up. Heck he traded down and still got Mayo (the type of player that you can build a D around) last year. Butler went lower than I expected and Brace and Chung went slightly higher than I expected, however, you can`t risk passing on a player you covet and hope he gets by another 10-15 teams until your next pick. Every teams`board is different. Crabtree went lower than I expected and Tyson Jackson went higher than I expected. This routinely happens with every draft.
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/28/2009 12:19 AM EDTZ,
Before you leave for the summer, what is your opinion of the Fred Taylor signing? That one really upset me. He's 33 years old, and I think he'll have about a $3.3 million cap hit, which is what we saved on Vrabel. RB is one spot where age really does matter, especially with a back who's taken the beating he has. Why did they sign him?
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/28/2009 7:34 AM EDTI just checked, and according to what I can find he is a cap hit of $2.2. Which still sounds like a lot against what he did last season.
And yes, I thought it was a little weird too -- 2400 carries is the magic number. Except for *very* short list that includes names like Barry Sanders, Emmitt Smith, Walter Payton, Curtis Martin, and Jerome Bettis, no back has ever had a high quality season featuring on an offense (1000 yrd 4.0 avg) after that many carries.
This includes Ladanian Tomlinson, who fell beneath the YPC avg of four, almost the day after he ran the ball his 2400th time. We'll see if he can add his name to that list this season.
Taylor just passed that 2400 thresh-hold. and he is 33 years old.
I think we both know the answer: BB likes veterans.
There is just one running back worth mentioning in this case though: Marcus Allen.
Like Taylor, it took him longer than you would think to get to 2400 carries, because of a history of missing a season here and there to injury, and in his case the emergence of Bo Jackson that put him on the sidelines.
In his mid-30's he put up back to back seasons of 800+ 4.0+ which is about the best showing of any back NOT on that list. And the YPC attests that he retained his explosiveness in this role. The fact that each season he had at least one run over 35 yards supports this as well.
I think BB is looking for a season like he got out of Morris last season. The way I see it he is willing to overpay a little for this guy.
If he gets 800 yards, Maroney gets 700 yards, and Morris et al get 700 yards, then NE has a top ten rushing attack again. And I think Taylor who has sprinter speed in the open, brings a "home-run" threat, as long as he isn't over-used. Almost every single season of his career he has had a 60+ TD run. That is an exceptional standard. Players during his career that have worse YPC and less long TD runs include Ladanian and Edgerrin James and just about everyone.
From what I have read from reporters, he still hasn't lost that speed, despite what his stats indicate. But then again both and his battery mate lost .5 ypc last season, and Jax moved rather quickly this draft to fix that problem, drafting Eugene Monroe and Eben Britton.
Is $2.2 million a bit rich for a platoon runner? You tell me. Marony and Morris make half that-- so for Taylor to make sense I think he needs to add value.
I think for Taylor to "add" the kind of value we are talking about he needs to be Marcus Allen and Fred Taylor.
He needs to have 800+ 4.5+ (his career avg btw) and he needs to crack a few of those long runs that he is famous for.
If he doesn't he will be a disappointment for me because any number of running backs who can run 500 3.9 can be found for 25 cents on his dollar.
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/28/2009 11:22 AM EDTThanks Z. I just have an awful feeling he'll be injured much of the season, no?
Re: Draft 5
posted at 4/28/2009 1:41 PM EDTGod. I hope not.
It is my worst fear. $2.5 in dead space?
That is why I objected to it.
But when the franchise does something I don't like I move on and try to understand why.
Some things make sense to me before they occur. Like getting Chung.
Others, even after, never make sense. LOL.
And still others make me look bad.