Friday, April 20, 2007

Friday Feature Part III (III of III): Smittblog Mock Draft

No more F'n around

Now for a taste of unimagination. I figured I'd better put my money where my mouth is after running off at the mouth so much about how dumb these draft experts are, so I'm throwing my hat in the ring (or insert cliche). The way I'm going to do it is to offer my opinion of what I think the team should do, and what they'll actually do. This way I'll have a better chance of being right in some capacity. That makes me twice as savvy as those retards who get paid to do this. It should be pretty easy to follow. This is not going to be funny at all. Dead serious. Not very exciting I know, but I like doing it, so F off.

1. Oakland
Should take: Jamarcus Russell
Will take: Jamarcus Russell
This is the easiest call ever. Don't let anyone tell you this isn't going to happen. Al Davis may be crazy, but he hasn't completely lost it yet. This is the only pick for Oakland.

2. Detroit
Should take: Trade with Atlanta
Will take: Calvin Johnson
The possibility of Atlanta moving up will become more apparent as Millen begins to panic about adding a potential bust in Joe Thomas or picking another wide receiver. He will desperately try and trade down and while Rich McKay and Atlanta are posturing very nicely about not wanting Johnson, this trade makes too much sense to go away. At the end of the day, the Lions likely won't consummate a trade before they pick and will pick Johnson so as to buy another hour to trade with Atlanta or just keep the pick and come away with the best player in the draft.

3. Cleveland
Should take: Adrian Peterson
Will take: Amobi Okoye
This is gonna catch some steam as next week progresses. Okoye is going to be the "it" guy going into the draft. There's not a ton not to like him. Adrian Peterson makes a ton of sense but Romeo can't afford to make a huge mistake with this pick and with the draft history of RBs at the top of the draft combined with the depth of starting RB talent in the later rounds, suring up their D is a more reasonable move. Okoye is too good to pass up and Cleveland is getting very talented on the defensive end with last year's addition of Wimbley. You get a kid who can plug the middle and share time with Mt. Washington. Cleveland will be hard pressed not to grab him. This acquisition could vault Cleveland into a top 10 D if Davis and Wimbley continue to improve. I'm not shitting you.

4. Miami (from Tampa Bay)
Should take: Laron Landry
Will take: Trade to Miami - Joe Thomas
The Bucs need more help in the secondary and no matter what anyone says, Landry is not a reach at 4. He is a difference making player in the mold of an Ed Reed. A head-hunting ballhawk. One of my favorite players in the draft. That being said, Tampa Bay will view this pick as a reach (and maybe think they can still get him at 9) and Miami would like to trade up for Joe Thomas or Brady Quinn. You don't normally trade up for an O-Tackle, but this is a dire need for Miami and they can't be comfortable with the prospect of reaching for Levi Brown. They also know Thomas is gone if AZ gets a pick. Plus, this pick will be available on the cheap. Tampa Bay will take a high round pick in next year's draft and a bag of balls for this pick once CJ gets taken.

5. Arizona
Should take: Lawrence Timmons
Will take: Gaines Adams
AZ needs a ton of help all over the place, but they could really use a stud linebacker to play opposite Dansby. Timmons is the man. He's a difference maker. He's better than Willis (who no less than 10 days ago was going to the Pats at 24 but now has moved up into the top 10 after doing nothing). But Gaines Adams will be too flashy for the new blood to pass up. To their credit, AZ knows that the DE position falls off FAST after Carriker and Moss while the LB crew is probably deeper and they MAY be able to steal Beason early in the second round.

6. Washington
Should take: Jarvis Moss
Will take: Patrick Willis
The Skins have to be CRUSHED that Okoye and Adams are gone at this point. They must be just sputtering. They figured at 5 they'd have a shot at the best DE or the best DT and neither are available. They should just move down the chart to the next best D lineman, Jarvis Moss. Instead, they'll want to go after "the best" something. On their chart, that player is likely Patrick Willis--the "best" linebacker. He is "rated" ahead of Timmons and Beason (and don't even get me started about Poszluszny or whatever the F his name is. I would bet all the tea in China that P squared is a failure in the NFL. He is Andy Katzenmoyer light.). There's a chance they flirt with Brady Quinn at this slot, but that pick might cause the early heart attacks of dozens of late 20's gentlemen I know. Because I want those fellas to live long and healthy lives, I'm really hoping they don't take Quinn.

7. Minnesota
Should take: Laron Landry
Will take: Brady Quinn
Now, I've got a weird feeling that back of the draft team like Baltimore or Chicago (I really think Green Bay may make a move here... I told you it was a weird feeling) could trade up to this slot and grab Quinn. They'd have to give up some decent talent to do that. But guess what? Chicago has some decent talent to trade (Lance Briggs says hello). This type of trade NEVER happens on draft day, so it'd be highly unlikely (which is why I'm "mentioning" it rather than "predicting" it), but it is food for thought. Landry is the perfect play for Minnesota. He shouldn't have fallen this far with his talent but Minnesota doesn't "need" him enough (though they could use him). Quinn makes too much sense and the pundits will be elated with this selection, though their fans will not when he goes Rick Mirer and shits the bed for the next five years. Tarvaris Jackson should start for Minn. He's a stud.

8. Atlanta
Should take: trade up with Detroit for CJ
Will take: Laron Landry
Atlanta MAY try and move up for CJ but Detroit will likely ask for too much. If Detroit picks CJ, that still leaves them time to make a trade with Hotlanta and don't be surprised if that happens. ATL needs a ton of WR help and should consider it, but one of their glaring needs is Safety and as laid out ad nauseum by me, Landry is a no doubter.

9. Buffalo (from Tampa Bay via Miami)
Should take: trade with Buffalo - Buffalo takes Adrian Peterson
Will take: trade with Buffalo - Buffalo takes Adrian Peterson
There's no one at this slot valuable enough for Tampa and Buffalo is going to POUNCE to get in ahead of Houston to grab A Pete. This will leave Tampa with some extra picks this year and some very solid picks for next year. This team is old and it could not be better for them. With Buffalo, A-Pete is the player they want. They'll get him and he could make them a playoff team.

10. Houston
Should take: Marcus McCauley
Will take: Aaron Ross
This is a tough one. I so want to think they'll take Alan Branch here to sure up that young D-line even more, but they kinda have to take a CB. Leon Hall is way overrated and I think people are picking up on it. McCauley is my favorite CB in the entire draft. Everyone who talks about him says he'll be a steal when he goes. I've never understood why players who receive such universal praise are not selected ahead of those who are universally proclaimed "overrated." Aaron Ross is not a bad choice and will likely be grabbed to make up for the Bush / V Young debacle (to appease the UT fans).

11. San Francisco
Should take: Jarvis Moss
Will take: Adam Carriker
This is a tough spot for San Fran. My guess is that they want a tackle (offensive or defensive) and probably want to grab a WR, but they aren't going to get the same value at this spot as they will with a DE end. Branch is a consideration as is Levi Brown, but I think they go for the top defensive end on their board and it's very likely his name is Carriker. I don't need to say anymore about Moss. He's getting screwed but some team will get lucky with him. SF will flirt with Ginn badly. That will make me very uncomfortable.

12. Tampa Bay (from Buffalo via Miami)
Should take: Alan Branch
Will take: Alan Branch
Branch has taken a bit of a beating with all the hype surrounding Okoye but he's still a valuable hole plugger and the Bucs could use one of those. After not getting CJ, they trade because they are aging on D and need help on both sides of the ball. They also know that the real value for wide receivers is in the second and third rounds this year and getting a couple picks in those rounds will be more helpful than reaching for value at the top of the draft.

13. St. Louis
Should take: Lawrence Timmons
Will take: Leon Hall
The Rams need help everywhere on D and would've jumped at the chance to take Branch. With him off the board, they'll take the next best player on their board. It would take a lot for Hall to fall this far down the board and if he does the Rams would be hard-pressed not to grab him. They'll also take a look at Timmons, Willis and the DE riff raff. They would be best served taking the most athletic LB, but Hall will likely be invited to the festivities and you can't let him sit at that table with his mom past 15, it'd just be embarrassing. St. Louis will be happy with this pick.

14. Carolina
Should take: Lawrence Timmons
Will take: Lawrence Timmons
This should be a no brainer for Carolina. Timmons is a superbly athletic and has overachieved for his size. Many mocks have Carolina grabbing TE Greg Olsen but I can't see that happening. Carolina is a playoff team and they're passing game is the least of their problems. They are a pick or two away from regaining their foothold on the South and reaching for a TE will not be particularly helpful.

15. Pittsburgh
Should take: Jon Beason
Will take: Levi Brown
Brown is the safe pick and while the greatest need is LB / CB, Poszluszny and Beason will likely be too risky for the new blood in Pittsburgh to take on and the CB crop is too weak with Ross and Hall out. They need some young talent on the O-Line and Brown is the way to go. I think this will end up being a pretty easy call for the Steelers.

16. Green Bay
Should take: Greg Olsen
Will take: Reggie Nelson
This is not gonna be a popular pick. EVERYONE thinks they're gonna take Marshawn Lynch but with the NFL's new conduct policy, character counts for a TON in this draft. With Lynch's recent run-in with law enforcement and questionable character, he may get passed by. Plus, I don't think he's all that sweet. TE would be a real solid choice here but the talent of Reggie Nelson on a defense that is lacking in talent is something they won't be able to turn down. They may be able to grab TE Zach Miller in the second round or Antonio Pittman for their running game. They will not be able to find a talent like Nelson deeper in the draft. Lynch is just not worth the risk. Especially for a town like Green Bay.

17. Jacksonville
Should take: Greg Olsen
Will take: Michael Griffin
The safeties finally get some love in this draft. Three taken in the top 20. That's fantastic. Griffin is starting to get some love on a lot of draft boards and seeing that there is a steep safey drop off after him, the Jags will sure up an already solid D with the addition of this playmaker. They'll be tempted to grab Anderson or Carriker, but Griffin makes the most sense.

18. Cincinnati
Should take: Marcus McCauley
Will take: Justin Harrell
Cincy is bad at selecting defensive players, which is surprising considering Marvin Lewis is the head coach there. They've had great luck with talent on the offensive line and skill positions and are solid at the safety position, but their D-line, linebackers and cornerbacks are amongst the league's worst. Character is going to be a HUGE issue for Cincy in this draft. They can't take Jarvis Moss and will look very hard at Posluszny and Revis but in the end their need at DT will outweigh the other issues. Harrell is climbing many boards and Cincy would be smart to grab him.

19. Tennessee
Should take: Robert Meachem
Will take: Robert Meachem
This is gonna be tricky. Tennessee is on the verge of becoming very good. Two names that will pop up over and over again are Marshawn Lynch and Ted Ginn, Jr., and they will be especially tempted with Ginn, but local boy Meachem is almost assured of becoming great and is too steady to pass up. Ginn has too many "ifs" for a team so close to taking the next step. They will also take a look at Revis as a potential replacement for Pac Man (Revis is a return stud), but Meachem is the target Young needs and he would be a great fit for Norm Chow's offense.

20. NY Giants
Should take: Marcus McCauley
Will take: Paul Posluszny
This does not make the ribosomes happy. The Giants have been in desperate need of linebacking talent for a little over a decade, maybe longer. There is some decent talent still left on the board and they'd be well advised to take Beason, but Posluszny seems like such a Giant-type pick. They will probably have to look at Revis, who would work very well and SHOULD look at Wright and McCauley, but they'll go the "popular" route and grab P squared.

21. Denver
Should take: Jon Beason
Will take: Dwayne Bowe
The Broncos are going to be looking to upgrade at WR, LB and Safety. The Broncos need some help at linebacker with Al Wilson's unceremonious departure, Beason will likely be too great a reach for them at this spot. Bowe makes sense and would be a good fit next to Javon Walker.

22. Dallas
Should take: Marcus McCauley
Will take: Darrell Revis
This is a typical Dallas pick. Revis will take over the return role and help fortify the secondary, but he is not the best pick at this slot for them. They'd be better served with McCauley, maybe Beason and even Anthony Gonzalez. They may take a run at Tony Ugoh, but if Revis slips into this slot they'll probably grab him.

23. Kansas City
Should take: Marcus McCauley
Will take: Ted Ginn, Jr.
This is my only guarantee on the entire board. If Ted Ginn is available, the Chiefs WILL take him. I would bet almost any amount of money on it. K.C. needs help at wide receiver, there's no doubt about it. They've failed to draft a wideout every year since I can remember. They need a ton of help on the defensive side of the ball too and really should begin working on their defensive secondary, but the draw of Ginn is going to be too great for that franchise to pass up. I can't wait for them to pick him, and I can't wait to laugh.

24. New England
Should take: Brian Leonard
Will take: Eric Wright
I can't be too angry with this pick. Maroney just had serious shoulder surgery and there's no guarantee he's gonna be able to "shoulder" the load (I'm a fucking pun factory). The Jets pick next and have got to have an eye on Leonard. He's a local kid and the Jets are in dire need of some pop in their backfield. Plus, the Eagles are also reportedly eyeing Leonard and pick again before the Pats. Leonard fits the Pats very well, but not as well as Eric Wright does. With Samuels doing all his bitching, the Pats need to gain some leverage and a solid corner is the only way to go. Though I'm not going to cancel the pre-order of my Pats Brian Leonard jersey yet...

25. New York Jets
Should take: Marshawn Lynch
Will take: Jarvis Moss
The Jets are a smart bunch now. They've moved away from their past days of draft day butchery. Another year they may have grabbed a second rate CB like Houston or maybe even taken a run at a tight end like Olsen, but this is not your father's Jets. Moss is the best value here and the Jets know that D-Line talent is at a premium. Moss at 25 is a Godsend and they will jump on it.

26. Philadelphia
Should take: Marcus McCauley
Will take: Marcus McCauley
The Eagles are perhaps the most successful drafting team in the NFL. They have been drafting later in the draft these days and still accumulate great talent through it (at least on the defensive end). This is why I am confident they will grab the best corner "left" in the draft (I think he's the best in all of the draft). McCauley is a big corner and would serve Philly fans well. The Eagles will likely flirt with Brandon Meriweather and will no doubt be tempted by Jamaal Anderson, but they should jump on McCauley and I trust they will do it.

27. New Orleans
Should take: Jon Beason
Will take: Justin Durant
There will be a lot of pressure to take Bowe, even with all the help NO needs on D. There's a chance they will succumb to that pressure. Not that New Orleans doesn't need the wide receiving help. Other than a 7th round pick, they were a rag tag bunch on that receiveing corp. More youth on that offense would help free up Reggie and Brees and Bowe is talented enough to make a huge difference. They need too much help on D and there's too much D in this draft to pass up. Durant will endear himself to that fan group in no time flat. He will turn out to be a steal of the draft.

28. New England
Should take: Jon Beason
Will take: Ryan Kalil
This is just a typical "Patriot" thing to do. They'll either draft Kalil or Olsen here because they can't go through a draft without picking up an interior lineman or a TE. Olsen doesn't fit as well as some other TEs in the past, so O-Line is probably where they'll focus their attention. They will also take a good long look at Jamaal Anderson and probably skip over him.

29. Baltimore
Should take: Jon Beason
Will take: Justin Blalock
I don't think there's a whole lot of discussion here. Ogden may retire and the Ravens have all but signed Blalock. He's about as sure a thing outside of the Chiefs taking Ginn as there is. Blalock is one of those under the radar guys who may move up some boards as we get closer to the draft, but I think he's pretty safe to the Ravens.

30. San Diego
Should take: Brandon Meriweather
Will take: Dwayne Jarrett
This should be a doozy. The Chargers draft well, but they need a wide receiver worth throwing to. As it stands, they do not have one. A big sure-handed guy would work out great for them, Jarrett is at least big. Meriweather makes sense for them but they have to make a run at big-time receiver and Jarrett has that kind of potential.

31. Chicago
Should take: Jon Beason
Will take: Greg Olsen
The Bears will be a in a ton of trade discussions as we get closer to the draft but assuming they are stuck with the 31st pick, the best value is Olsen and a nice big target for that asshole of a QB they have throwing the ball. They will get some great offers as we near the draft, so I'd bet it's better than 50/50 they don't end up here. Olsen makes sense if they do.

32. Indianapolis
Should take: Brandon Meriweather
Will take: Jamaal Anderson
This is going to be a little too easy for them. Some mock drafts have Anderson going as early as 8. With as much talent as there is at the DE slot, it doesn't take too much imagination to believe that Anderson could slip this far. And if he falls this far, there is almost no doubt in my mind Anderson goes to the Colts. Meriweather would be a great pick as the Colts have shown what kind of impact a difference making safety can provide, I just don't think they'll take the risk.

So there you have it. I'll stick that up against Mel Kiper any day.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Friday Feature Part II (of III): NFL Team Needs (The Real Ones)

I think it's safe to say that QB is a "need" position for the Raiders

I apologize in advance for the length of this portion of my tri-partite draft preview extravaganza, but it's necessary. Here's what I'm gonna do: I'm previewing team needs by telling you what the "experts" are saying and whether and why they are right or wrong. In doing that, you'll figure out what I feel is the team's true need in the draft. Later today, I'll finish this whole thing by posting my mock draft. I'm posting them back-to-back because it would be stupid to post "team needs" and then wait three days for the mock draft. And I'm not stupid. At least not that stupid. First there are a couple of general "needs-related" rules I need to address.

First things first, I took my experts "needs lists" from Scouts Inc. When you see their lists you'll notice something striking. Oakland, for instance, lists 8 positions that the Raiders are in "need" of filling. What positions are missing? Safety, DE and kicker, that's it. While I agree that the Raiders need a ton of help, listing 8 team needs isn't helpful. I'd give these experts a pass if they just did this for the Raiders. That would actually be kinda funny. But they have 9 positions listed for the Colts! The Colts NEED 9 positions filled? That's ridiculous. The reason they do it makes sense. When they miss badly with their picks, they can note that they had "LB or CB" as a "team need" and the team did themselves a good service by filling that need. It wold be pretty ingenius except that they list EVERY FUCKING POSITION AS A TEAM NEED (Check out Miami's need list below)! Assholes. For my purposes, I will only list needs I think must be filled in the first 75 picks (potential starters). Secondly, I do not accept the idea that a team has a "need" for a TE. No team NEEDS a TE in the first three rounds. Look at the Super Bowl teams. Those teams have solid TEs, but you can find a good TE anywhere in the draft and while it is nice to have a player like a Shockey, Gates or Gonzalez, it's not a "need". TE is a luxury item and can never be a "need" if you consider a "need" someone your team has to pick up in the first 2 rounds. need need need. Should I use that word anymore? Jesus I'm redundant.

Also, you may note that my draft order is not the same as the actual order. This will make more sense when my mock draft comes out, but I do think that there will be a good deal of movement in the top of the draft. The top 6 players are extremely valuable. After that, the next hundred are not. Great depth in this draft but not a ton of elite talent.

Lastly, I think it's important to realize "need" and "who they should draft" aren't necessarily the same thing. Value is important. You don't draft a "need" position if it lacks value and you may draft the top value even if you don't "need" the position. The Patriots are masters of this. When I talk about what a team needs, I am only talking about what they should try and fill with one of their first 2 or 3 picks. I am not suggesting that a team should try and reach on a guy in the first round because they need that position. Only when need and value match up should they grab a need position. Ok? Here goes:

1. Oakland
"expert" says: QB, DT, O-Line, CB, WR, TE, RB, LB
Smittblog: QB, O-Line
The Raiders do not "need" a CB. They have perhaps the most solid pass defense in the AFC outside of the Ravens. Asomugha is a Pro Bowler and Fabian Washington can hold his own. I don't think people understand just how good Oakland's D is. If they hadn't turned the ball over so much and didn't suck so much on offense, they could have been .500. Sure they need depth in the secondary (I could run by Duane Starks when he comes out in the Nickel), but who doesn't? I don't recognize that as a need. QB is the glaring need. The Raiders are pretty much the only team (with apologies to the Dolphins and the Jets) who do not have an NFL QB on their roster. Their O-Line is horrible. Gallery is a total bust and will likely have to move to guard, where he will continue to stink. They need a tackle and Joe Staley isn't strong value if he's there. With the 33rd pick, they should take whichever DE slips out of the first round. There is no place like DE to have strong depth. While it's not a need per se, there's no need to reach to fill a spot like OT when you can grab a project with upside later in the draft. Oakland is not a QB and offensive lineman away from the playoffs. They need to be smart for a change and just build their team from their strength (defense) on down.

2. Detroit
"expert" says: QB, ILB, CB, TE, S, WR, C, DT, DE
Smittblog says: CB, DE
The Lions should eventually pick a good young QB, but they don't need one. They especially don't need one this early in the draft. And they REALLY don't need one this year when there's one great QB and half a dozen decent ones like Kolb, Edwards, Stanton and to a lesser degree the medicine woman. Jon Kitna is not half bad. Don't believe me? Check out his stats. He completed 62% of his passes and was sacked once every 9 teams he dropped back to pass! If he played for the Bears, they'd be undefeated and defending champs. The only way the Lions take a QB is if Russell is available. The Lions suck at defense. And losing Dre Bly didn't help matters. If there was a top CB, they'd simply drop down to 8 and take that player. There is not a top CB. They need a ton of DE help, but the DEs are a crapshoot. Every day someone is flying up the charts while another is dropping back. They can't take one this early and likely won't move back unless Hotlanta gives up the farm. There's a player (he'll appear in my mock draft and I've mentioned him before) who is just too valuable to let go. In the second round Detroit can grab one of the DEs who fell out of the first round or grab McCauley or Wright.

3. Cleveland
"expert" says: CB, QB, RB, LOT, DL, S, OLB, WR
Smittblog says: RB, DT, (QB-Russell ONLY)
The Browns actually have some decent defensive players. Especially their linebackers if you consider Wimbley a linebacker (he's more of a DE / LB like Adalius Thomas). They could use some help on the interior defensive line with Mt. Washington relegated to about 6 plays a game and I think they could go after Okoye. The most glaring need though is RB (I don't consider Jamal Lewis a running back). They haven't had a decent RB since Ernest Byner. They need a guy who can pound it inside and take the pressure off their average QB and passing game. They can then grab Wright or McCauley (or even Reggie Nelson if he falls) in the second round. I feel bad for Cleveland fans because their team is so unelectrifying. They need an impact player like A-Pete to get them going. Match him with an impact D-back like Nelson, McCauley or Wright and this team has the beginnings of something.

4. Miami
"expert" says: OT/G, QB, DL, CB, TE, WR, S, RB, LB, C
Smittblog says: LB, CB
This expert "needs" list is funny. They literally list EVERY position. Every single position. They don't need another wide receiver. Booker and Chambers are very good. Booker had a fantastic season last year and Chambers is one of the top 10 most talented WRs in the league. They are getting a little long in the tooth on the defensive side of the ball. Especially the middle of the defense. They can't grab an LB or CB here because no one's good enough. I do think they'll move up to here to grab top talent either on O or D line because they are well aware of the talent drop off and Tampa will move with CJ off the board (unless they move up to take him). In the second round they may grab a QB or TE Zach Miller but should take a CB.

5. Arizona
"expert" says: OT, WLB, CB, DT, DE, TE, S, P
Smittblog says: OT, DT
How can you list punter as a team need? Yes, Arizona is a punter away from 9-7. Are you drunk? As if you needed another reason from me to discount the validity of "need" analysis by experts. AZ definitely needs some help on the O-line. They were hurting before they lost the shitstain that was Leonard Davis. Their dream is that Thomas falls to them but I'm not sure that will happen as some other team will likely move to Tampa's spot and grab him after CJ is taken by Detroit. They could use a ton of help on the D-line, starting with DT and moving to DE. I don't think they'll actually draft any D-linemen in the first 3 rounds as the value just isn't there. They may grab Meriweather in the 2nd round and perhaps a linebacker in the third.

6. Washington
"expert" says: DT, DE, G, S, CB, WR, OLB, QB, TE
Smittblog: DT, WR
The Skins are a paper tiger. They are very strong at critical positions. They are one of the few teams at the front of the draft who don't need to overhaul their O-line. They have a solid if aging secondary. They have decent offensive weapons and a good linebacking core. They are missing some top young talent, especially on the D-Line. They should be banking on Okoye but I'm not sure they'll get him. They could also use a big target wide receiver. If Jarrett falls deep into the second round, he could be a steal
7. Minnesota
"expert" says: WR, DE, CB, TE, C/G, QB, DT, RB
Smittblog: OT, QB
This is tough for me. I love Tarvaris Jackson and think he could do some things if given the reins. I just don't think that's gonna happen. I don't think they'll trust him and with the way the NFC North sets up, Minnesota is probably a player or two away from making the playoffs. I don't understand why they aren't more active in the Trent Green race. Right tackle is a position of major concern. They lack depth on the offensive line as it is and they literally have no one to fill the right tackle position. Any of the top 3-4 tackles would work here. They can then take value in the second round like Pittman at RB or WRs like Gonzalez or Smith.

8. Atlanta
"expert" says: S, DE, OT, CB, G, DT, RB, PK, MLB, QB
Smittblog: DE, WR
Another kicker, eh expert? How can you not list WR as a team need for Atlanta? I agree that the loss of Kerney was huge for a D that was suffering as it was. They kind of need to reconstruct that defense from the ground up. They could definitely gain from a superior pass rushing talent, but I'm not sure they're going to get it in the first round. I don't think they need a safety necessarily, but Landry would be a great pick. What they do need is a great WR. They have two picks in the second round and could move up with Detroit for CJ, but I don't think they'll make that move. Hopefully for them they grab a DE (maybe Adams or Carriker) and stock up on some other defense talent in later rounds. I'm not sure they'll get their WR this draft and may have to weight for Urrutia to come out next year.

9. Buffalo
"expert" says: RB, CB, OLB, TE, DT, FB, WR, ILB, FS
Smittblog: LB, RB
This is easy. For reasons that will become clear, I think Buffalo will move up to this position to grab a unique talent. The Bills desperately need an RB. They also need an LB and may make a second move in the second round to grab Beason. The Bills ARE another team that is a player or two away from the playoffs. O-Line depth, CB depth will help, but an RB and a top 5 linebacker puts them in playoff contention.

10. Houston
"expert" says: CB, WR, S, DT, OLB, DE, OT, RB
Smittblog: OT, S
It starts to get a little easier as you move down and the teams become less flawed. I think it's a mistake to suggest that Houston "needs" an RB. They have half a dozen of them. The Texans young defense is getting better. I think people will begin to realize that a player like Mario Williams comes along less often than a player like Reggie Bush. He's a Richard Seymour type guy. Offensive line is a serious need for Houston. They would also be well served to grab a ballhawking risk taker in the secondary like a Landry or Nelson.

11. San Francisco
"expert" says: DT/DE, OLB, S, OT, WR, RB, ILB, TE, FB, C/G
Smittblog: CB, LB
San Fran has been fairly active in the offseason. The Nate Clements grab will look a lot better if they can grab a comparable CB in the draft. That would be no "h" UGE!. They could also use some talent at linebacker with J-Pete gone. San Fran will be a darling next year pretty much no matter what they do in this draft. I would BEG them not to take Ted Ginn here though. That's pretty much the only way they can F this pick up.

12. Tampa Bay
"expert" says: WR, DT, S, DE, CB, OT, RB, TE
Smittblog: OT, CB
If I'm proven correct, Tampa will have 4 of the first 68 picks. That would help them immensely. They need help on the defensive end and that's the way their draft will go but their biggest need is OT. Unless Levi is still there, I don't think they'll get what they need and will be forced to take a DE or DT, which is not a bad thing. Tampa needs the help. They should find young talent at their other positions of need in the later rounds and are two years away from being a really solid team.

13. St. Louis
"expert" says: DT, DE, LB, CB, RB, G/C, WR, S
Smittblog: LB, CB
The Rams are a funky team. They usually draft kinda "sneaky well." They grabbed most of their good players that way. Holt, Bruce, Barron, Bulger, Little... they know what they're doing. They have NEVER had luck with CBs though. This could be the year they get one who is at least decent. They could also use help at LB, though their core group of guys are pretty talented.

14. Carolina
"expert" says: TE, S, ILB, DE, OT, WR, OLB, DE
Smittblog: OT, LB
This expert evaluation really pisses me off. How can you say this former dominant team's number one need is a TE? That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard. They're O-Line kinda broke down last year, as did they're linebacking corp. They need to invitalize those groups with some talented youth. The only place they don't need immediate help is on the D-line, yet the experts put DE as a need TWICE! Nice work. If you have a choice of Timmons or Greg Olsen at this pick, do you really think Olsen is a better fit for this team after what happened to Dan Morgan last year? Gimme a fucking break.

15. Pittsburgh
"expert" says: OLB, G, DE, CB, RB, WR, C, ILB, TE, FB
Smittblog: LB, CB
Pittsburgh doesn't have a lot of needs. They need to stay healthy. They could definitely use an athletic outside linebacker like a Timmons or Beason. They could also use some corner help because their corners kind of blow. They don't rely too much on tight corner coverage traditionally with the zone blitz and all, but they are really lacking in the corner position, even for them.

16. Green Bay
"expert" says: RB, S, TE, WR, DT, CB, OLB, G
Smittblog: RB, DT
I'm very surprised that GB didn't pick up any of the veteran RBs available in the free agent market, because there were several. I'd be surprised if they don't take a run at Corey Dillon before it's all said and done. This year's draft is not where you want to pick up your future RB unless you get the first guy off the board. At DT though, they could strike gold. There's good talent and depth at the position. I'd go DT, WR, RB if I were them. Maybe take a run at Ramonce Taylor in the later rounds.

17. Jacksonville
"expert" says: S, DE, QB, OLB, WR, CB, DT, MLB, TE, G, P
Smittblog: S
Jacksonville just needs to grow up. They have a great foundation at every position but don't really need anything other than a running mate for Darius (or replacement if he gets hurt again). They are a VERY good team.

18. Cincinnati
"expert" says: CB, DT, OLB, TE, S, OT, WR, DE, QB
Smittblog: DT, CB
Cincy doesn't need any help on offense at all. I don't care about the Henry suspension, the loss of Washington or anything, they just need to clean up defensively. They need to start with some youth at the front line of their D-line. Secure that and move onto some playmaking corners and they could have the making of a dominant team.

19. Tennessee
"expert" says: WR, DE, CB, TE, C/G, QB, DT, RB
Smittblog: WR, RB
Tennessee is on the rise. They have great talent on the defensive side of the ball and even with the loss of Jones they are still in great position in the defensive backfield. They need offense. Vince can't do it all. They really have no one for him to throw the ball to and no one who can consistently run it. This should be a fun draft for the Titans fans as they won't be making conservative picks like OG or DT. You'll be getting WRs and RBs.

20. NY Giants
"expert" says: OLB, CB, OT, DT, WR, RB, TE, G/C, P, PK, ILB
Smittblog: CB, LB
I really want to write "QB" because I think Eli Manning is one of the top 5 worst QBs in the NFL, but that just goes to show you how glaring a need the Giants have at LB and CB. There is NO WAY that the Giants can take Posluszny with this pick. That would be horrendous. The value here is with a CB. The Giants can pick up some decent LB talent later in the draft.

21. Denver
"expert" says: DE, WR, S, OT, DT, MLB, RB, CB
Smittblog: WR
This cracks me up. Denver has Champ Bailey, they traded for Dre Bly, yet they Scouts Inc. claims that they NEED a CB. Gimme a fucking break. They need a WR because Rod Smith is almost 100 years old. And that's about all they need.

22. Dallas
"expert" says: CB, WR, OT, DE, PK, C, S, NT, ILB, OLB
Smittblog: CB, DE
Dallas definitely could use someone opposite Newman who can hold his own. Not that Newman has been any great shakes himself but he's certainly capable. They can get great value for a CB at this position or they can grab a DE like a Jarvis Moss. Dallas is in a great wait and see position for this draft.

23. Kansas City
"expert" says: WR, OT, DT, CB, DE, QB, G, FB, LB, C
Smittblog: OT, OG
Kansas City won't do shit without an offensive line. They were built from the O-line out. With Shields and Roaf gone, they need to build that back up. They have significant problems on D, but they need to start with the O-line. This could be an ugly year for K.C.

24. New England
"expert" says: ILB, S, CB, OLB, RB, OT, QB, P, NT
Smittblog: CB, RB
With Samuel bitching, the Pats have a legitimate need at CB. That part is easy. With Maroney's shoulder injury, they also need to grab an RB. Those are the two easy needs. They are also old at inside linebacker but it was hard for me to list that as a "need" when they've got Thomas, Colvin, Vrabel and Bruschi on the roster. They definitely need to get younger but I don't know that LB is a greater need than RB and CB.

25. New York Jets
"expert" says: CB, OLB, TE, WR, NT, ILB,C, QB, S
Smittblog: CB, QB
The Jets need so much help at corner it's not even funny. They may have the worst set of corners in the league. The don't need a center, the don't need a safety they don't need a TE. They do need a QB, and not a backup QB. Chad Pennington sucks when he's healthy, and he's rarely healthy. They would be well served to grab Stanton or someone who can throw hard enough to break toilet paper.

26. Philadelphia
"expert" says: CB, S, DE, OLB, RB, WR, TE, MLB
Smittblog: CB, WR
There's no way the Eagles draft a WR even though they need one so badly They never do. They need corner help and will draft a corner. He will likely be a big one. That's just what the Eagles do.

27. New Orleans
"expert" says: CB, LB, DT, WR, TE, DE, G/C, QB
Smittblog: S, CB
The Saints really just need to solidify their D backfield in order to go from a very good team to the best team in the NFC. That's all they need. Period.

28. Baltimore
"expert" says: CB, OT, OLB, ILB, FB, C/G, QB, S, DE
Smittblog: OT, QB
With Ogden on the fence, the Ravens definitely need to upgrade the O-line. They also need to fill the void that will be left at QB when McNair goes out for the career with a concussion at some point this year.

29. San Diego
"expert" says: WR, S, ILB, CB, DL, RB, G, OT, OLB, LS
Smittblog: CB, WR
SD is two players away. A decent wide receiver and a good young corner. They'll get both.

30. Chicago
"expert" says: DT, OLB, WR, TE, RB, OT, QB, S, G
Smittblog: QB
They need to replace the cumslinger, stat!

31. Indianapolis
"expert" says: OLB, DT, ILB, RB, G, CB, WR, OT, QB
Smittblog: S, CB
Doss is gone and they always need CB help.

32. Seattle
"expert" says: N/A
Smittblog: CB, S
They need more talent in the defensive backfield and they need to stay healthy.

Mock Draft Next....

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Chappy Sinclair a Deadbeat?

Colonel Chappy Sinclair

CBS2 LA is reporting that Louis Gossett, Jr., best known for his role as Colonel Chappy Sinclair in the epic war drama / rockumentary "Iron Eagle" ("Break the sound barrier. Break the speed barrier."), has not paid for tickets he purchased to attend events at the Staples Center.
Oscar-winning actor Lou Gossett Jr. is being sued for nearly $40,000 for not paying for two premium seats he purchased at Staples Center in 2003, according to a lawsuit filed Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court.

L.A. Arena Funding Inc., in charge of ticket sales at Staples Center, filed the lawsuit. A contract attached to the lawsuit states Gossett signed the deal in October 2003 and it entitled him to attend Lakers, Kings, Clippers, Sparks and Avengers regular season games.
I find this very hard to believe. First of all, if his seats are for the Staples Center, why the F are the Kings involved? They play at Arco Arena. Secondly, there's no way Colonel Chappy Sinclair is paying for a ticket package that includes the L.A. Sparks. Lastly, who the hell are the "Avengers"?

In Iron Eagle, Chappy said, "God doesn't give people things He doesn't want them to use." Assuming Lou Gossett, Jr. heeds his character's advice (and I'm sure he does) and assuming that there's no way he'd ever attend a WNBA basketball game, why would he pay for a ticket package he wasn't going to use (not that I'm suggesting that "God gave him" the tickets per se, but He did give him his keen acting abilitiy which led to his talent being discovered which led to his immense riches and fame which led to his ticket purchase, so the big guy was involved and Chappy's quote is on point)? Chew on that, L.A. Arena Funding Company.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Another Great Moment in Red Sox Broadcasting

This is a clip from last year. Dennis Leary and Lenny Clarke popped in the booth after a few too many. The result was predictably hilarious but almost left Remy in traction.

A True Patriot

Remy and Orsillo's call of this was their best of the day.

This may not be up on Youtube very long, so we should celebrate it while we can. This is from yesterday's Sox v. Angels game held on Patriot's Day. Patriot's Day is a holiday in Massachusetts (and I think Maine and New Hampshire) and serves to honor the Battle of Lexington. It's held on the third Monday in April and is celebrated by the running of the Boston Marathon as well as a Sox game that usually starts at 10am. Massachusetts residents celebrate by waking up at 7am and cracking a 30 pack of Schaeffer's. I hope the pizza toss at the dickhead who dropped the foul ball becomes an annual tradition.

(UPDATE: A couple longer versions are available here, and here. The play-by-play is outstanding.)